“I’m Not Married My Wife’s Married”

Melancolia_(melancholy)A single eligible woman said to a married man who was ‘hitting on her’ at a party, “Aren’t you married?” The married man responded with “I’m not married my wife’s married.” This bit of semi-humorous ‘cheat speak’ is a justification of cheating based on the belief that different commitment rules apply to men and women. For this guy, what is good for the goose is definitely not good for the gander.

What is cheat speak? Cheat speak is what cheaters believe and say to themselves and other people to justify and rationalize their cheating behavior. These rationalizations making it temporarily easier for an individual to cheat. As you might guess, one problem with rationalizations and justifications is they don’t last very long. So people who use cheat speak to help rationalize their behavior have to say these things over and over again and cope with the conflict that’s behind it.

Cheat speak is also a very convenient defense against guilt. These statements are usually humorous and meant to distract the speaker and the listener away from the moral and conscience troubles the cheater is constantly dodging.

“Men were not made to be with just one woman, it’s not in their natures.” This statement is an example of a biological rationale for infidelity. The idea is men are biologically determined to cheat, that cheating is built into their ‘genes.’ I guess you could say there is a ‘gene for cheating.’ Give me a break.

Cheat speak is also meant to simply manipulate a listener into giving the speaker exactly what he is asking for. In this case, it’s sex or what feels like a viable excuse for having an extramarital or ‘extrarelational’ affair. With enough witty cheat speak going on you just might start believing that the cheater indeed knows what he is doing and why he is doing it.

Last but certainly not least, cheat speak can be used to conceal a ‘commitment problem’ from oneself and anyone else who might think the speaker has one. I think cheaters are made anxious by the phrase, ‘commitment problem,’ and work hard to keep the focus away from this kind of thing. “What more does she want from me, I take care of her don’t I?” As if providing for one’s family should be a spouse’s primary or only concern.

“You aren’t giving me what I need. It’s your fault I’m looking somewhere else for it.”  This little piece of irrational blaming is intended to put the ‘blame’ and therefore the responsibility onto someone else. When cheating is involved, the attribution of blame will most likely fall to the wife. This is a common example of the old ‘you made me do it’ defense. As if anybody can make anybody to anything.

Sincere lovers be on the look out for cheat speak. If you hear think kind of thing at the beginning of your love relationship you can count on cheating at some point during the relationship. Most cheaters start rationalizing their behavior long before they’ve acted.

Comments? Welcome. Dr. Tom Jordan

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Dr. Jordan

Dr. Thomas Jordan is a clinical psychologist, certified interpersonal psychoanalyst, author, professor, and love life researcher.

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