Why Men Cheat, Part One: Your Fault

The topic of cheating is a very sensitive subject, one that most of us have experienced at one time or another in our relationships. It is a breach of trust, a violation of the agreement of exclusivity that two people volunteer to enter into. But even more unfortunate is the lack of responsibility taken by the cheat-ee as to the motive of the cheat-er, which keeps the cycle going. As a man, it is disheartening to hear women dismiss unfaithful behavior as just another example of our inability to control our urges, a decision made completely independent of a woman’s actions in the relationship. And so I have decided to give my readers a man’s-eye view of the real reason men cheat. My hope is that you hear it, let it sink deeply into your consciousness, and harness the power that you have to keep your man at home. Let’s go in.

“Once men pass their virile twenties, they go to bed mainly to satisfy their egos. And because many women don’t understand that, they damage and wreck a man’s ego.” – Malcolm X, The Autobiography

For those of you unfamiliar with Brother Malcolm’s story, he spent a significant part of his early adulthood working at a whorehouse as a steer, someone who guides men to the different flavors available in the brothel. He noticed that the largest part of their clientele were older, married men who were nearing, or past their sexual prime. In his conversations with the working girls, they all said that they were just as often paid to listen to men vent about their nagging, complaining, disagreeable, domineering wives, women who “were being taken care of and given everything.” The prostitutes’ main job was not to have sex with men, it was to stroke the man’s EGO through the use of sex and sensuality. These men paid for these services because, as Brother Malcolm put it, “the Prostitutes made them feel, for a time, that they were the greatest men in the world.” And THAT, ladies, is the main reason why men cheat on you.

To be more specific, men cheat because they’ve had their egos and self-esteem bruised and stomped on by the women they love, and so they seek validation between the legs of another woman. Ladies, you have to understand that you are a walking, talking reflection of our self-esteem, an example of the best specimen we were able to find and attract. Let me repeat this, because it is important: we live vicariously through your opinion of us; how you think of us is how we think of ourselves. I cannot think of any more important and influential privilege other than parenthood that can compare with having the power to shape how a grown-ass man views himself. And the sad part is that most women don’t even know that they have that ability, to make a man walk with his chest out or his shoulders slumped.

We want to feel as if we are the greatest men who ever came into your lives, the flyest nigga who ever laced up a pair of Jordans. In the beginning, all relationships start out that way: the infatuation period where you tell a man everything he wants to hear. You make him feel as if he is giving you something that no other man can, both physically and emotionally. As time marches on, both of you begin to show more of yourselves and your shortcomings, because you are no longer able (or willing) to hide it. And that is completely okay, because life and love is about the balance of positive and negative, yin and yang, ebb and flow.

But once two people have been in a relationship for an extended period of time, they know how to push one another’s buttons. They’re more honest with their feelings and emotions, they voice their frustrations louder, and most importantly, your man believes what you say about him more deeply. It is in THIS period that you must be careful to maintain the same high praise of him that you had coming into the relationship. Sometimes we forget to complement one another because we say to ourselves, “he/she already knows what I think about him/her,” While that may be true, we males need to hear it again, just like you do. And during the act of physical intimacy, we need to know that we still give you the business, just like we did when we first met. Sex for men is just as mental and emotional as it is physical. And if you want to be the only person he gives his sexual energy to, you must go beyond the sexual dimension and please him mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.

This all sounds very familiar, doesn’t it? It kinda sounds like…the reason WOMEN cheat (*gasp*)! That’s because at the end of the day, men’s emotional health is just as important as our physical satisfaction, just like you. The idea that men have divorced our emotions from our libidos is somewhat inaccurate, and insulting. They say we are led by our little head, that’s laughable. It’s not so much we have unemotional sex, its that sex feeds a different area of our emotions. Instead of our hearts, it heavily influences our self-esteem, and many women just don’t understand it that way.

So once a woman gets cheated on, her first instinct is to blame his behavior on his inability to keep it in his pants, in order to make herself comfortable enough to move on. It’s a knee-jerk reaction to an act that was probably brought on by several things she could have done differently. But by shifting the failure of the relationship to his side, she neglects to reflect on what part, if any, she had in his choice. I understand it, because the natural human coping mechanism is to block negative memories to avoid reliving the pain and embarrassment caused. But when you purposely avoid reflection and self-criticism, you throw away the priceless experience that will save you from future pitfalls. And thus, the cycle continues in the next relationship.

In conclusion, it is not entirely due to a lack of self-restraint, or a male mental disorder that we cheat. I know this because I have passed on countless offers from all types of ladies wanting to throw it at me, from ratchets to ring-worthy women. So have my homies. We pass because we don’t need the validation; we already have it at home. And that is the same reason we cheat: because many of our girlfriends and wives don’t understand that their opinion of us is our primary source of self-esteem. Don’t play soccer with it, because if you neuter your man, he will get his nut elsewhere.


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If you don’t feed your man’s emotions, he will seek it elsewhere.


14 Comments Add yours

  1. This is an interesting perspective on one aspect of why men cheat. I like the essay-style of your posts.

  2. Jontae Grace says:

    Thanks Queen! And I am glad you see it for what it is: ONE aspect. I hope I dont send a message that cheating is all women’s fault, because next week I’m gonna balance it out and go in on the Brothas! Peace

  3. serenityluv1 says:

    Reblogged this on Love, Life and Relationships and commented:
    Add your thoughts here… (optional)

  4. I think you’re right about ego and validation being key, but I also think it extends beyond the relationship. My (now ex) husband chested (and ultimately committed bigamy) when he was facing professional problems. He found a stranger that he could lie to and make himself out to be the man he wanted. I was supportive of him, but I also knew his vulnerable underbelly (especially after 16 years together) and he wanted to be able to pretend that his fears and insecurities did not exist. It’s key for both partners to be introspective, honest, and communicative. Without those keys, validation will be found through temporary salves.

  5. Socialkenny says:

    I count read pass the first paragraph with the Malcolm X quotes. Why not? Because it is so friggin’ true!!

    That is absolutely the pull that hookers have over ordinary women or girlfriends; they actually engage the men. Women cry all the time that men don’t talk nor listen to them and their worries, but we’re in the same position also where we crazy a bit of convo and to feel like a man of value.

    1. Jontae Grace says:

      People dont want to admit that men and women are more alike than we think. We both want the same things in life – for completely different reasons.

  6. Socialkenny says:

    Make a man feel like a king /the Alpha Male, then a woman has a better chance of keeping him around. And in the black community, we have too many black girls wanting to dominate their men. Men were created to be dominant creatures, not submissive (that’s the woman’s role). So until women (black and Latina women) can come to this reality, black men will forever stray. Also the same for white guys, but on a lesser scale since white girls are more submissive and less domineering.

    1. Jontae Grace says:

      There are a bunch of reasons why women dont know this important bit of info about men, but I think the most important reason is that there are simply not enough men around to pass the info along. We have women raising boys AND girls, and unless a person seeks that information on their own, they dont get it from an early age. I was raised by a single mother, and I didn’t learn this from my pops – I had to read Brother Malcolm’s book to learn it LOL. Thanks for tuning in Brotha!

  7. Marie says:

    Wow, good post and it gives me a lot to think about. It wasn’t even full of blame and negative vibes, just kinda tellin’ it like it is. I like that a lot.

  8. Andrew says:

    I actually enjoyed this very much. I happened to be reading the Malcolm X book when I came across that very paragraph and had a hard time fully grasping it, so I googled it, and sure enough, this popped up. I appreciate your post, very insightful.

  9. bronzesugar says:

    Thank you so much for this post…

  10. I don’t agree with all of it but you do provide some really valuable insight into male behavior….Thanks for joining me.

  11. Gloria Brock says:

    I agree with what has been said. It is one aspect & not all circumstances are the same. What I have learned is how you respond to the act of being cheated on…Physical or emotional infidelity..can also play its part in couple’s recovery….if they can recover.

    To shift blame without taking self inventory is a defense mechanism because nobody wants to admit that MOST likely there was something we could have done our handled differently.

    I look forward to Part 2.

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