Negotiating Relationships: Returning to Normalcy after One Person Cheats
Relationships are complex enough without one party cheating. Cheating introduces mistrust and confusion into a relationship that already has its fair share of problems. Problems such as how much time should you spend with the boys, how much money should she spend at the mall, put the toilet seat down or leave it up, dinner and a movie or pizza and Blockbuster. Cheating complicates the always complicated relationship. An affair makes things worse. The partner who was cheated on is sometimes left to wonder whether they had anything to do with the affair. Sometimes the partner who did the cheating will imply that they had no other choice, but to cheat. Negotiating a return to normalcy is essential when deciding how to proceed after the indiscretion has been realized. The problem under study is how two people in an intimate heterosexual relationship can negotiate normalcy after one person has committed infidelity. Returning to normalcy often hinges on other factors. The factors that will be addressed are culture, religion/faith and educational level. This study analyzes literature related to cheating in relationships and forgiving a partner who cheats. Additionally, a personal case study is included. This case study depicts the author’s willingness to confront cheating and also her willingness to negotiate a return to normalcy. It is essential to note that normalcy is defined by the person. Normalcy can mean different things to different people. It can mean deciding to forgive and continue in the relationship or ending the relationship after an admission of infidelity has been made.
Keywords: Negotiation, Relationships, Cheating in Relationships, Women's Attitude Towards Infidelity
Master's Student, Department of Conflict Analysis and Resolution, Nova Southeastern University