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How to Stop Men from Cheating?

March 24, 2012

I came across this article and felt it may make for good discussion and perhaps bring clarity to the relationships within our community? Is he saying men are big babies, women are selfish? Couples become t relaxed? I am not sure what he saying. I usually don’t shed too much light on relationship discussions because I am not an expert in that area but this guy seems to feel he has it all figured out. Do you think so?

Real Reasons Men Cheat
by: M. Gary Neuman

As women have gained more respect in our culture, men have diminished somewhat. You’re not a “good” man anymore if you make a good living and coach your kid’s football team. No, no. The real question is, do you change diapers? Do you skip some Sunday football to be at your in – laws’ family barbecue? Do you plan a date night and arrange a babysitter? How about some household cleaning? My point is only that men tend to get less appreciation because they’re expected to do more than ever before. Whenever I counsel a couple, I do an appreciation exercise with them early on in our therapy. Each partner is given a pad and asked to write all of the things that he/she appreciates about the other. Invariably, the list is very short. After reviewing the list of about two to three things I ask the simple questions: “Doesn’t he hold down a good job, isn’t he an attentive father, doesn’t he make time for vacation?” And it’s always the same answer: “But he’s supposed to do that.” Somehow, we’ve concluded that whatever is expected of our spouse is not worthy of appreciation.

As the bar gets raised, appreciation diminishes. As a woman appreciates her husband less and less and focuses on what he does not do more and more, her motivation to be “ thoughtful and caring ” understandably decreases and it’s an immediate step toward a man feeling emotionally disconnected from his wife. This logical process makes up 54 percent of the problem that contributes to cheating, the men say. Cheating men wanted their wives to give to them in a host of ways, whether it be a neck massage, initiating sex, buying them their favorite CD, cooking a special dessert, saying how wonderful they were, or any other thoughtful gesture. These men often admitted that they needed to do the same for their wives. But in their minds, the main contributor to their cheating was that they had come to feel that thoughtful gestures were sorely lacking. However, many cheating men told me that they don’t want their wives to tell them daily that they are hard workers with simple comments that they’d find condescending — they want their wives to show them through gestures that they are appreciated. They want their wives to really understand how hard they are trying to do the right things. Men are largely raised to provide and protect. As far forward as society has moved in not placing people into categories just because of gender, men are still thought of as the ones primarily responsible for protecting and providing financially for the family. Appreciation for their work in this area is often missed by wives.

Naturally, there are many women today who earn a significant part of the family income and therefore don’t see how their husbands deserve greater appreciation than they do. I’m not in any way suggesting that you do not deserve great appreciation for your work outside the home if you are one of those wives. Yet for many women the pressure to generate income is less than for their husbands. I’m not talking about day-to-day energy or pressure but rather the overall social pressure that your husband has to bear. In most cases, a man is still going to be seen as the one primarily responsible for financially caring for his family. This pressure is huge regardless of how much income you bring to the table.

Bottom line: if your family suffers financially, few people are going to look askance at you. Almost everyone is going to judge your husband negatively and infer that he has failed in some way even if you had a lot to do with the financial problems… But where is the appreciation? Men need to be appreciated for fulfilling the responsibilities they have been learning since they were little. Learn to understand that your husband’s ability to protect and provide for you is an identity that’s been drilled into him forever. It doesn’t mean he hasn’t or won’t be able to learn to identify himself in other crucial ways like being a loving husband to his wife and father to his kids. It just means that he needs to feel that you give him high marks in these areas. He wants you to tell him that you are thankful that you can live the lifestyle you do because of his hard work, that your kids can have a vacation, holiday presents, nice clothing, and so on because he works to make it happen. This takes nothing away from you or your need to feel appreciated by him. It just focuses you on one of the most significant areas of your husband’s existence.

M. Gary Neuman is a Florida state – licensed mental health counselor, a rabbi, and the creator of the internationally recognized Sandcastles program for children of divorce. He and his work have been featured multiple times on Oprah, The View, Today , and National Public Radio’s Talk of the Nation , as well as on Good Morning America, NBC Nightly News, CBS Weekend News, and Dateline NBC. Neuman’s work has been featured in People, Time, Cosmopolitan, the Washington Post , theChicago Tribune , the Miami Herald , and the Los Angeles Times.
You can also visit his Web site at http://www.mgaryneuman.com .

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12 Comments leave one →
  1. Chandra permalink
    March 24, 2012 3:55 pm

    I think what Neuman says validates the experiences of some men and I find value in his position. I don’t think people necessarily cheat because they are craving more sex. I think people cheat because we feel we need more validation and appreciation. Too many times, the rush of an affair or new love only temporarily fills the need.

    For black men, too many times society encourages sexual sport as the best way to validate black masculinity. We all lose when this cycle continues. I want to see more examples of whole relationships in our communities.

    For me cheating is not the root of the problem, cheating is the response to a deeper issue. My husband has had affairs. I also had affairs. Although we both had affairs, I think we were looking for some type of validation that we felt we were not getting at home. More than that, our first child is not mine but his with a white woman. Everyday we still have to take hard looks at where we’ve been and where we are going. Relationships do need a certain level of vulnerability to be authentic. Sometimes, we are just not willing to take that risk.

    I agree that there is a real lack of appreciation for the opposite sex. I also think that sometimes what I need for wholeness and completion can never be found in a human relationship. My husband does have an important role in my life, but not as important as God in my life. I rather put more pressure on God about things and less on my husband.

    Actually, I have dialogued with my husband about ways I can help him define is identity healthily. I could put my feelings and wounds on display and hyperreact to my husband’s weaknesses. I believe men and women cheat because they are not allowing God the proper place in their lives. When I put and make other things, priorities, gods….I can find many excuses to cheat.

    Never have I thought how can I make my husband stop cheating. That decision is something he has grown into with himself and his God. When men cheat, I hope women can still support their journey and healing. I believe so many times our love is on self, self, self, and not how love was designed in our lives to bring wholeness and help. Probably if we knew how to communicate better in our relationships, probably if we were not so competitive in our relationships with each other, if men and women could just listen, probably if we did not have this financial strain over our relationships….I find value in what God ordained but it is not without hard work, disappointments, and so much more…but all of it keeps me close to God in prayer and surrender. After 15 years of marriage, I will continue to look to God….we coulda, shoulda, woulda, been divorced 10 times over….

    There is an authenticity in our marriage. There is a truth and bond. We look to God and daily we continue. The minute we stop…we will cheat again or divorce…for real…so hopefully both of us have figured at this point in our life…genuine gestures and actions….make big strides together. In time, in God, I will see the course….in faith. For there is no other way.

    • Diva permalink
      March 26, 2012 3:25 pm

      Chandra, I enjoyed reading your post, your transparencies and courage was a refreshing read. I can understand, appreciate and relate to your journey and too know the value of Faith in a faithful God that will guide us through life’s circumstances and relationships.

      • Chandra permalink
        March 26, 2012 9:49 pm

        Thank you, Diva! Your encouragement means a lot. God bless you!

  2. March 24, 2012 11:06 pm

    I am fully in agreement with M. Gary Neuman. I may get some flack from some women but I only know to tell the truth, no matter where that truth lies, I tell it.

    Ladies, or some ladies shall I say, do not know their role or forgotten their role in a relationship. One of her jobs is to provide a loving home in harmony for her husband and her family. Having a big chip on her shoulder because she thinks he should be doing something that he is not, is not providing that loving harmony. Mr. Neuman says that the appreciation for a good man husband has lessen. It has. As us women climb the ladder of success, we raises the bar for men to compete with or be on the same level. Well that is not necessarily what it takes to be a good man. I say if he is able to provide or do his part, care and love his family to the best of HIS ability, or in other words, be what God ask a husband to be in the home, she should not complain. Ok, so you make more money outside the home, president of the company or own the company, Ladies you still have to appreciate your husband and be of service to him when you get home. Just because you took that extra responsibility to make more money, you can’t EXPECT your husband to take on some of the roles that was mainly meant for you. No, I am not putting us women back in the caveman days but if he do those extra things, show your appreciation to him for doing it. In a loving way. Don’t act like he suppose to do those things. I am sure a good man will help out when and if he can, but ladies do not expect that it suppose to happen.

    Love you husband and show him you appreciate his love, you appreciate his presence in your life and being a part of your life. Don’t let time that has gone by make you become complacent with your role as his wife. Don’t let your role outside of your home confuse the role you should have inside your home. Respect and Love, Love and Respect. Show with actions, and care with your heart. Be the virtuous woman God (Yahweh) meant for you to be. Today society should not dictate your role as a loving wife, your love for your husband and appreciations that you should be SHOWING him should dictate your role to him and how you treat him.

    This message was overdue. Someone need to let women know that although we are climbing a step up in the business world and success, we loose some steps in what it will take to make a marriage last. I certainly am not like most women but I say “we” because, that is who I represent.

    – Doren DA

  3. March 25, 2012 12:33 am

    By Coincidence, I am part of a online discussion group and this question came up, ” Are men hardwired to Cheat?”. I posted two responses below. The first response is another reason that I agree with.

    From Mr. Glover:
    I think There are 2 common profiles of cheaters. The first is insecure people who cheat because even love isn’t enough 2 boost their confidence. They’re risk-takers and feed off of the adrenaline rush. Then there are those who cheat because they’re bored @ home or their partner won’t give them the type of sex they want, so they look elsewhere.

    From Mr. Garcia:
    No they are not. Its just the position they are in. If I wasn’t getting any at home then I’m sorry I will get me! I’m saying if its been over month or more.

    • Diva permalink
      March 26, 2012 4:14 pm

      Mr. Glover just simplified it, the whole men not being appreciated and feeling unappreciated whether it is real or not plays into the psychological process of things. This is where all the layers come in, not listening, not valuing, miscommunications, and assumptions.

      Then Mr. Glover and Mr. Garcia’s other aspect, he is simply not getting any at home.

      The first point of view I must concur with what others have stated, we each have to have a healthy sense of one’s self and that comes from believing in a higher power other than ourselves, because as much as I may ; no one individual can ever affirm another individual. You have to believe in yourself. This is a personal journey.

      So, if we both have a healthy God given understanding of who we are and what we possess by all means we should be long suffering, kind, not easily angered, gentle, meek, listen communicate and more often than not we should strive to understand what is not being said for therein lays the essence. In a healthy relationship fair give and take is key.

      I feel often times we don’t see marriage from a team perspective. The couple should have an agenda, a game plan and objectives to conquer in this life instead of each other.

      My interjection on an unfulfilled sexual relationship at home, this can go both ways, Women not given it up to the husband and in some cases the husband not given it up to the wife just boils down to power and control and why anyone would be shocked at this type of behavior inducing cheating is a wonder to me. Unless there is sickness or physical trauma, or he/she is on leave; a month or more, can we be serious that is a set up.

    • August 12, 2012 5:53 pm

      I have to disagree, a wife can be the best wife, and a husband may still step out

  4. Diana permalink
    March 29, 2012 2:46 pm

    I understand where everyone is comming from as far as women and men having their roles in a relationship..and if at anytime on of them fails to carry out that role then if and only if you want your reationship to work and truley are in love with your partner..you and that person should fix it..all that other stuff is just excuses for people to cheat and i dont think that men or women should have a guidline for why they cheat..come on if you are not happy or lacking anything in your relationship fix it or leave it…there should be no reason to add to the problem…to me this article is just more excuses for cheaters

  5. Jackie permalink
    April 20, 2012 3:45 am

    There is no excuse for cheating because if your really in love and something is not right you just have to talk to your partner and work things out with them. Then if it fails you just have to try harder.

  6. Jackie permalink
    September 7, 2012 6:49 am

    There is no reason for cheating all those are excuses coz if u really love the person u have to try make things work than finding an alternative.There are women who try their best to make their men confortable in their homes but end up being cheated on

  7. Choco permalink
    October 8, 2013 4:24 am

    Hello.
    I know you believe in prayer but i believe in what i do and the only way to bring back my spiritual body is by doing what my gods want from me by offering the sacrifice that is why i am telling you, so let me know if you will help me or not. I assure you that your husband will come back to you as soon as i finish with this i promise you that no matter what is happening and what people think your husband will come back to you.

    • Indira Williams permalink
      August 14, 2014 11:00 pm

      I rebuke the demonic spirit that wants people to turn to some “gods” for help in their relationship rather than the one true God. Being swayed, tempted and led to dabble in things that are not of God and not have a discernment of what is morally and spiritually right is one of the main reasons that people are cheating-Men and Women!

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