Last Updated on March 11, 2024 by Angela Vaz

You’re reading this post because you’ve either discovered your partner was cheating on you or you’re plain curious.

Either way, I’m going to cover this question from multiple angles because there is no cut-and-dry answer.

These situations are complicated because we are human.

Human beings have so many feelings and we process a lot of emotions simultaneously.

We can feel joy and sadness at the same time.

We can feel anger and sadness at the same time.

Every single situation is different.

In my case, my partner told me he didn’t love me and hadn’t for a long time. Oh yes, that cut deep.

But according to him, he still cared for me.

I do believe that, that was a lie because there was a lot of vengeance involved from his end even though he was the one who cheated.

I’ll talk about my story, but to answer your question, can a guy can cheat but still love you?

Yes. It’s completely possible that a guy can cheat but still love you. If he’s been having the affair for a long time, chances are he has moved on. But if it was a one-time event or he was unable to control his urges, then he may love you. However, he doesn’t respect you or the relationship if he hasn’t tried to fix it or come clean from his end.

So, there are several factors that we need to consider before we say that the guy loves you.

Let’s dive in.

I am going to link to multiple posts on cheating at the end of this one, so be sure to check it out if you want more information.

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Why do guys cheat even if they love you?

You have to understand something very important.

Most guys cheat not because they don’t love you or you’re not enough.

They cheat because they have unresolved issues that they need to fix themselves. Their cheating rarely has anything to do with you.

Now before we talk about the reasons, you have to keep in mind that everybody feels attraction.

It doesn’t matter if you’re single or married.

Beautiful people are going to cross your path, you are going to develop a crush on someone and you will feel attracted to people, physically or emotionally.

It’s normal.

But people who are committed (and monogamous) choose to not follow their instinct.

They understand that they feel an attraction to someone because it’s biological and move on.

They don’t act on those feelings.

During the course of your life, whether you are single or committed, you are going to develop an emotional connection with many people.

You may even be physically attracted to those people.

But if you love and respect your partner and you both are in a committed relationship, then you make the choice to stay loyal.

However, some people cheat.

And, here are some reasons why they cheat.

1. They lack impulse control

he lacks impulse control

A lot of people (surprisingly) do not run the consequences of a decision in their heads before following through.

They act on impulse.

Let me give you an example.

For instance, you may calculate your finances before going on a trip. You’ll analyze your budget and then accordingly book hotels/resorts based on what you can afford.

Some just wing it.

They just book tickets and put everything on their credit cards. They don’t actually take the time to see if they can afford the trip.

They decide that they’ll deal with it later.

A lot of individuals struggle with impulse control.

It doesn’t matter if they love their partner, they can’t help cheating.

When they feel an attraction to someone, they simply go with the flow. They don’t care about the repercussions.

They don’t realize that it’s going to hurt you or hurt the relationship.

They do the deed and decide to think about it afterward.

2. They don’t feel emotionally close to their partner

he doesn't feel emotionally connected to his partner

When 2 people aren’t happy in a relationship, they will drift away slowly even if they stay in the same household.

Maybe he has emotional needs that his partner doesn’t meet.

Or maybe he doesn’t feel intimate with his partner.

So, instead of talking to his partner and ending the relationship, he will seek validation and intimacy outside of the relationship – and this leads to cheating.

This is what happened between my ex and me.

Once I was physically and emotionally abused, I lost interest in the relationship.

Instead of leaving the relationship, I stayed but resented him silently.

He was unhappy too.

And he continued to have affairs until I discovered he was cheating on me and I left.

3. He needs the adrenaline rush or may be polyamorous

he needs the adrenaline rush

A lot of people aren’t built to be monogamous.

This doesn’t have anything to do with their partner, it’s just how they’re built.

That’s why it’s so important to take time to be alone and figure out what you really need and want before entering a relationship.

There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to relationships.

So, he may be a polyamorous person who is quite literally unhappy being committed to 1 person.

He may also be constantly chasing that adrenaline rush.

It could be either reason.

Now, instead of talking to his partner and revealing this, he may seek the thrill of a new romantic or sexual encounter.

And yes, he may love his partner, but he needs to satisfy his cravings because his desire overrides his commitment to their partner.

Please note that there are several polyamorous people who build happy and satisfying relationships but are open about it with their partners.

Both parties must talk to one another, no matter what their needs and wants are. This is the healthy way to build a relationship – monogamous or polyamorous.

4. He hasn’t healed from his childhood trauma

he may have not healed from his childhood trauma

If he’s had a very bad relationship with his parents or he’s had emotional trauma as a child that he’s not recovered from like low self-esteem, then cheating is a way of seeking validation.

This unhealed childhood trauma will prevent him from forming a strong and long-lasting relationship with women.

This is a coping mechanism.

These personal issues do influence a person’s behavior and yes, they can lead to poor choices like cheating.

5. He may just be immature

he may just be immature

A lot of people have just not developed the emotional maturity required to be in a relationship.

They enter one because everyone else around them is doing the same thing.

They enter one maybe because they are forced to by their peers or their parents or society.

They may struggle with monogamy, have a fear of intimacy or have a genuine fear of being tied down to 1 person for their whole life.

And yes, this can lead to cheating because they aren’t ready for this.

He may love you, but that will not stop him from making bad choices.

Do people cheat even if they still love you?

Love and respect are 2 completely different things.

He may still love you and care for you but he does not respect you, your time, or the relationship he has with you when he chooses to cheat.

It’s very important to understand that we all get feelings of attraction to people other than our partners (committed or not).

But cheating is a choice.

It involves breaking the trust you have with your partner and pursuing another person.

He chose to cheat.

Is it worth staying with someone who cheated?

is it worth staying with someone who cheated

I cannot tell you what to do, but I can share my opinion with you because I have personally been through this.

I was married for 4 and a half years to a person I had dated for almost 5 years.

Yes, there were red flags, but I chose to ignore them.

I married this man because I had known him throughout my college.

Out of the 4.5 years, he was having an affair for 2 years.

So, in my personal opinion, I believe leaving is the best solution.

My quality of life drastically improved after I discovered he was cheating and left.

So, no.

It’s not worth staying with someone who cheated.

It’s very likely that the person will cheat again.

You may love this person with all of your heart but you have to respect yourself too.

You matter.

Your feelings matter.

You will most likely not be able to trust this person at full capacity even if you choose to stay with them.

It will take a long time for your partner to re-earn your trust.

And this will lead to both of you feeling hurt.

Your partner will suffer from low self-esteem after the cheating especially if they are trying to reconcile with you.

By staying in a relationship with someone who cheated or continues to cheat on you, you are telling yourself that you deserve less.

If you want and desire a monogamous relationship, you deserve a partner who can give you that.

I won’t lie, it’s not easy leaving a relationship.

You feel horrible having to start from scratch again.

It feels like you’re beginning at square one and it can feel even worse when you watch all your friends get married and start a family.

Or maybe they have families and you’ve just gone through this major setback.

But once you take this step, it gets easier.

I felt at peace after leaving that relationship.

I fell in love with my single life after a while and I pursued all my passions and dreams.

I eventually found love again.

I’ve been with my current partner for almost 2 years and I never would have gotten here if I had stayed with my ex.

So, yes, I highly recommend you leave even if it means staying alone and being single again.

I have written about this topic a lot because I keep getting questions related to cheating.

So, here are some more posts to read to help you:

Angela is a 30 year old Illustrator and Blogger living with her 2 adorable labradors in Bangalore, India. She has a degree in Psychology and Human Relationships from the University of Toronto. When she's not writing her heart out or drawing, you'll find her sipping chai and reading non-fiction books.

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