How People Cope With The Fear Their Partner Might Cheat On Them

Man contemplating and looking out the window
Hamish Duncan/Unsplash

When singles finally find a romantic partner after what may have seemed like an eternal love drought, they make sure they put in all the effort it takes to keep that relationship going strong.

However, there are those who are convinced that the love they found is too good to be true–probably because they may feel they don't deserve it or because they have doubts.

That's the thing about those who don't trust a good thing when it happens. Their skepticism can be all-consuming and it can lead to self-sabotaging the relationship.


Curious to hear from those who struggle with the "what ifs" in their relationship, Redditor DinoNuggieVape asked:

"How do you cope with the fear of your partner cheating on you?"

A certain hobby is more likely to prevent wandering eyes.

Commitment To Knitting ​

"I’ve been cheated on by my only other long term partner beside my wife. I don’t worry about my wife because 1.) I trust her and 2.) having an affair would cut too much into her knitting time. Hell, I feel like 'the other man' when compared to yarn."

– JohnnyIsCross

Relatable Concern

"As someone who crochets, I’m sure this is how my partner feels 😂"

– shwee2019

Sew What?

"Mine sews. You're said the Perfect comment. I once complained to my wife about being second love. She sewed me a blanket, and it's now my most comfortable possession. Find the right one for you."

– BPGizza

Fixating on the possibility is the bigger problem, according to these love experts.

Stop Obsessing

"By coming to terms with the FACT that there is literally nothing you can do to control what another person chooses to do."

– Pairadockcickle

Find Your Self-Worth

"Too many people hang on to the idea of 'I can’t live without this person' love."

"Yeah, you can. Realizing you can exist on your own and be fulfilled. After that? You’ll realize you can survive a cheater."

– 5hrs4hrs3hrs2hrs1mor

Finding Independence In Love

"I can't live without this person"

"That's not love. It's obsession. Once you realize you don't need the other person to live, you can start to truly love them."

– Ch4l1t0

Fooled Once

"This. I had two partners (possibly three, not sure on the last one) that cheated on me. The first one I know for sure. It feels absolutely soul wrecking. So I do know how it feels. But I do also know the signs and what to look out for. Investigating phones or emails or listening for hushed conversations aside, the biggest tell tale is in the personality change. It happens 100% of the time. That is at least from talking to other people about it has led me to conclude anyway. You can always tell. And if you suspect, you could well be right."

"I'm not Mr. Paranoid or anything, but the reality is if she's going to cheat on you, then it's going to happen. There is nothing you can do, if it's going to happen, you can't control it. What you can control however is your reaction to it. And mine is very simple. End of relationship, block contact, see you later. The second time it happened to me, I didn't even offer an explanation. Her friend contacted me at some point asking why I had cold cut her out of my life and how it was so f'ked up of me to do so. I simply responded that I knew she was screwing someone behind my back, to which her friend replied, 'Oh you know about that? Well it really doesn't matter, it's you she wants!' I don't think I actually responded, I hung up."

"Getting past that business for the second time was remarkably easy. She had a few things left at my place which went into the bin, hoovered my house, cleaned the bathroom and kitchen, threw out the few bits in the fridge as I used to get some food items that she liked but I never used, total clean out. I didn't feel the need to go nail a new girl that instant, instead spent the evening playing some guitar and watched a movie. I was perfectly happy and was done with the whole thing in an evening practically."

– raceAround126

The pain cuts deep, but these Redditors learned to move on.

Trust Goes A Long Way

"I’ve been cheated on by every partner I’ve ever had. I just got married 6 months ago to the only person I’ve ever actually trusted. It comes natural which is crazy… i do have moments where i het intrusive thoughts at random like 'what if…' but i snap myself out of it and remind myself how truly trustworthy this man is and how i know he loves me. A lot of commenters seem to not understand that being cheated on can cause a type of ptsd. It’s something you just work through."

– tmtm1119

Lingering Trauma

"Agree, my ex cheated on me 16 years ago and I think I will always have some doubts. My wife, who I've been with over 12 years, has never once done anything that would make me think she would cheat on me, and I trust her completely, but that trauma from 16 years ago is is still there, rearing it's ugly head from time to time."

– BigSlade2001

I find that being obsessed with the possibility of one cheating on another can manifest in ways that jeopardize a solid relationship.

It's more important to appreciate being in the moment when something is going well, whether it's a relationship or anything else applicable.

Because fixating on the "what ifs" can take up a lot of energy that could be better spent on enjoying a healthy relationship.

While your instincts are usually reliable, always remember that communicating a doubt that is becoming an obsession is vital to sustaining a trusting and respectful relationship.

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