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Serial Cheater

Community Member

Hi, After some my best friend & support during challenging time together, my dad passing, 2 bouts of cancer (One of which left me infertile) and 2 very intense surrogacy journeys. We've been through so much, and worked hard to create the life we have. It makes me so sad to think that that is very possibly all over.


He is a serial cheater (with the same lady), a serial liar and has significant anger issues (towards himself not the family) and mental health issues (that have been untreated). When our first daughter was newborn (2016) I caught him sexting someone else. We worked through it, went counselling. Then just before our 2nd child was born, caught again, he denied it until he could deny no more - evidence was clear. Same lady. He admitted they were having a full affair (2019). Devastating. We went through couples counselling. I was determined to do all I could to keep our family unit together.  A few weeks ago found a text from this same lady. Again he denied - until there was too much evidence to deny. He admits to 6 months of phone sex. His adamant nothing physical, either way it's an affair.


Our kids adore their dad-friend's think he is the nicest- he does a lot for our family and I'm not sure how I could have survived without him. He is not coping with the consequences of finding out about affair. When confronted about the affair he got very aggressive (towards himself), he has been self harming (scratching) - he grabbed a knife at one stage (nothing ever directed towards me or the kids). He repeatedly tells me that all he wants is to be with me and the kids, he loves us. he wants nothing to do with the other lady (I've heard all this before). Though he says if his not with me he doesn't want to live. I ask him what did he think was going to happen? He says he was only thinking about himself, his very remorseful. I ask him why - he says its because his sexual drive is so high. He has promised me over and over that he will do all he can to change=taking meds, seeing a psychiatrist etc. He has addiction issues - previously drugs, alcohol - his sober now.


My head is spinning, I'm confused & can't talk to anyone(aside from mum) due to judgement. His parents know - apparently his dad did something similar(I keep being told 'it's genetics'). I just want to do the right thing for my family, he genuinely was my best friend. We are due to see a couples counsellor this week

5 Replies 5

Hi PositivePolly,  Welcome to the forums and thank you for sharing this here. We’re really sorry to hear what you’re going through; it sounds like your partner has really hurt you and your strength in trying to make it work is admirable. We hope the amazing words from our community who hopefully come here soon, bring you some comfort.  It sounds like it’s been a really difficult time for your partner, and it must be really hard to comprehend and process the separation in that context. It sounds like you care for him deeply, but it’s also hard to manage your own and your children's’ wellbeing through such circumstances. 
In a healthy relationship, you should be communicated with and treated with respect. It could be useful to have a chat with 1800Respect to discuss how you’ve been treated by your partner. They're on 1800 737 732, or you can reach them on online chat, here. You could also speak to Relationships Australia on 1300 364 277.   
Thank you again for your courage and strength in sharing your story here. It’s really important to look after yourself and reach out when you need to talk it through. Our counsellors are here for you, anytime you’d like to chat, on 1300 22 4636, available 24/7, or you can speak to them on webchat here
Kind regards, 
Sophie M 

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

You've been through a lot Polly. It's sad to hear your husband has betrayed you and done this countless times with the same affair partner. 


Serial cheaters have a lot more going on inside them than merely "a high sex drive". The more you read about these types of personalities, the less you may like people like this. 


Basically the things I picked up on were: 
* you're not telling any friends (who think he's marvellous) which can lead to you suffering in silence = going downhill with the pretence.
You not having support = you appearing like a nervous wreck to everyone without them knowing why.
Lastly everyone STILL thinking he's great when he's not = looks like "enabling" behaviours from you. 
* you saying you want to do "right by your family". 
It seem clear to me that you mean "right by your family" = suffering this for life. 


Suffering for 7 years is a very long time. Having his parents say "it's genetic" is simply blame shifting by blaming GENES. Wow that's special lol. 

Even his parents are excusing his behaviours to a point. 


I hope the Counselling helps you figure things out. A priority to tell the Counsellor would be his threats of ending his own life. This may help the Counsellor see he's jumped to using the worst manipulation strategy of all. 


Best wishes

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello PositivePolly, it is so sad that this is happening to you and whether or it's genetics or not something should have been done to avoid this, so I find this difficult to accept and he shouldn't be blaming all of this as being handed down from his father.

You have had such a terrible time, which I can only open my heart to you for trying to cope with all of this, but we have listened to you and want to help you.

A person who has behaved like this seems to have only respect for himself and not for his wife nor his children and because he believes he has a 'high sexual drive' is no reason that he can cheat on you.

A cheater will only tell you what you want to hear, and for him to say that it was non physical is a long stretch and when you first met someone you love, they are your best friend, but life changes and so do the circumstances as well as having the trust you originally had for one another.

Promises can be made but can they be honoured.

Please let us know how the counselling goes.


Life Member.

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Oh Polly, you have been through so much, and I am truly sorry for everything you’ve had to endure. It’s even more upsetting that, instead of your relationship being a source of support during your hard times, it has really been an extension of your trauma. I was in a DV relationship for many years and I see so many parallels, I think over time that we become conditioned to accepting so little that we really lose our bearings on what we can expect from a partner. My self worth was also so low that I didn’t think I could survive on my own. The reality was that I thrived without the constant manipulation and emotional drama. My family also thought my previous partner was wonderful, while he abused me behind closed doors. But the reality is it doesn’t matter what people on the outside think, all that matters is how your marriage FEELS on the inside. When I really sat down and asked myself if I loved him, I realised I didn’t love how he treated me, I didn’t love walking on eggshells, I didn’t love the disrespect, the lies, the minimization. I described it more as a bond, and it was, a trauma bond. I had been through so much during the relationship, some external and a lot because of the relationship, but because he then comforted me, I associated him as being my savior in a way, the person who could stop the hurt. But the reality is that I wouldn’t have needed that if he wasn’t constantly hurting me. I would suggest that you go and see a psychologist on your own, not a couples counsellor who is invested in both of you working to save your relationship, but someone invested in you. I think that you need to start looking after yourself because it’s clear no one else is going to. 

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hey there. I imagine you would feel upset, angry, frustrated, confused plus a whole lot of other emotions. And you want to hope for the best until you get proven wrong again. 


I won't venture into the genetics or predisposition ideas. But do I think you deserve better from him? Yes. Is he remorseful? Perhaps. On the flipside, trust is probably lost. 


I guess the question is what does moving forward look like to you? Are you able to forgive and move on?