You know when you see someone in a situation from the outside and you think to yourself that it’s crystal clear to you what you’d have done if you were in their place? And you just can’t believe what they are doing instead? You just don’t understand their choices and you think they’re just making obvious wrong decisions.
I used to see people get cheated on all the time and think to myself, what the hell are they doing? Why aren’t they just taking revenge or yelling their hearts out at their cheating partners or leaving them or planning some massive destructive plan to make them regret what they have done for the rest of their lives? Even though all this does happen in some situations, in others, people stay despite what happened and choose to continue with the relationship. I know many of us from the outside don’t understand why would anyone stay or be okay with being cheated on. However, this is not me discussing if a person should stay or not after being cheated on. This is me telling you that you never really know what’s going on till you’ve been in their exact position. Yes, sometimes people cheat and you wish you could make them pay for what they did, but you choose not to. People might think that you’re a fool for doing so, but let me tell you one thing: You don’t know what it’s like hurting someone you love, even if they’ve hurt you.
You haven’t been in a situation where one day you’re completely in love and everything is perfect, and the next day you realize that nothing is perfect and the person you’re in love with has been cheating on you all along. The thing is, when this happens, you don’t just un-love them the second you find out they have been cheating on you. You’re not a robot that’s going to press some kind of button and make things instantly change. You’re a human being with so many feelings, emotions, and complex thoughts.
I have seen people judging others and shaming them for how they stayed in relationships after being cheated on, and I used to be one of these people too. But what I realized is that we just haven’t been there. And even if we have, we haven’t lived the same exact relationship. We don’t know what’s truly happening or going on with these two people — we don’t get to judge.
You don’t get to ask someone how they are still in love with their partner after being cheated on. You don’t get to shame them for still loving the person who cheated on them. Emotions and feelings are not always things that are in our hands. We don’t get to choose how we feel, it just happens. Sometimes you still love someone and just keep having feelings for them despite your will.
You can’t expect people to just stop missing their partners, even if they have decided to end their relationship. You don’t get to just judge them for missing them after all that has happened. It’s normal to miss their partners and to still have feelings for them — infidelity is not a feelings eraser. It won’t make the person lose all their feelings towards the other person instantly.
When a person gets cheated on, they don’t just get hurt or broken or feel like their whole world has just been turned upside down, but they also suffer from misunderstanding afterward from the closest people to them. Many people can’t share what they’re thinking or feeling to people close to them after being cheated on because people shame them and attack them for having sympathy and feelings left towards their cheating partners. They make it harder for them to express themselves because they are not doing the expected, which is sending their cheating partners straight to the guillotine.
Being cheated on is something that is more complicated than what it looks like from the outside. It’s not easy for someone to stay, and it’s not easy for someone to walk away—there are loads of things to be processed, considered, and felt during a time like this before doing anything.
Having external pressure is the last thing a person needs while going through something like this. After being cheated on, most people just want to be understood. They want to have a space to process and think about what happened. They need someone to just let them do all that before judging them or shaming them or completely jumping into conclusions and must-dos for them.