When a spouse cheats, why are so many people angry at the other person as opposed to their SO?

  1. Because it's easier to think the other person led them astray than to acknowledge that someone you love would deliberately hurt you.

  2. Hating someone who is an integral part of your life requires majorly disrupting your life. Hating someone who isn’t an integral part of your life requires little to no change in your day to day life.

  3. Yep this and the fact that the boyfriend is in love. Love tends to break our feeble brains down and turn it into mush, at least the parts of the brain we all use to make comprehensive smart decisions on our own without influence by our significant other.

  4. This is absolutely true. When my wife cheated, I was mad. Her and I argued and fought once the shock wore off. But it wasnt her door I kicked in wearing clown paint and brandishing a bat. After spending time in jail and holding that anger at my wife's AP for a long time, I had a boss sit me down one day and tell me that my anger was misdirected.

  5. Yeah this seems obvious and I don’t understand why op even needed to ask the question. Obviously, it’s easier to blame the stranger than the life partner you love.

  6. Yep, I can tell you from experience that’s exactly it, your internal ego does not want to accept that the person you love so deeply would just cheat and lie about it. Many marital counselors consider cheating a form of psychological abuse, because it is so hurtful and caused by your significant other, so it’s easy to see their affair partner as the “outsider” causing the threat….really it’s because the significant other is a piece of shit cheater and deserves the brunt of your anger. The other person is just a POS looking for an easy lay. That concept HAS to sink in before people can accept the cheating, gain back their self respect and run down the road as fast as they can.

  7. I think it's because its significantly easier to believe that your partner was somehow lured or coerced into cheating than it is to believe that the person you trusted made a conscious decision to hurt you.

  8. Exactly. People don’t get that cheating is a two team (or more) affair. It’s almost like your partner made as much of a conscious decision to hurt you as the other person did

  9. Eh, people can and do try to poison other people's relationships so that they can swoop in. While it requires your partner to listen or act on things, if someone is constantly lying about you and acting like you're cheating, then your partner is more likely to cheat.

  10. In some cases the person you don’t trust takes advantage of the one you do, drugs, alcohol, money, connections… it’s a shitty hill to climb up.

  11. My ex used to say this ALL the time and I knew it was a red flag, I just didn’t really know why. You explained it perfectly thank you!

  12. Had this just happen to me, I felt bad for the guy because he got used and she kicked him to the curb. I didn’t confront him or anything because who the fuck cares. I kicked my girl out of my life 🫡 That’s how it should be done.

  13. To be honest, I don't blame the other person at all. If you are attracted to your partner, you would think that others would be too and that they would want to be with them as much as you do. They are not cheating, your partner is. If they don't have the will to not hurt you, they are not a good partner.

  14. I would guess that it's because it's easier to be mad at a person you barely know/are not too intimate with than mad at your gf... But it's just a guess...

  15. Being mad at your partner would be acknowledging that they were fully responsible for their actions. Blaming someone else for their actions makes it easier.

  16. I've been cheated on before and I 100% blamed my BF at the time. He was a disgusting loser for it, and I knew he was to blame because one of his exes got ahold of me and said he had cheated on her too.

  17. I was cheated on by my ex. The lady told me about it and we handled it in a similar manner. It took a lot of courage for her to tell me, and I'm thankful.

  18. Yeah, but if you were knowingly the other woman and continued afterwards, you'd also be a trash person. But yeah the cheater is definitely the worst person in that situation.

  19. My ex was on the apps and actually hit up one of my best friends, that’s how I found out, and when confronted he said “I just wanted to see if I was still attractive to other people”. Then I left him, since it wasn’t the first time (I know I’m dumb but I was insecure and young).

  20. Yes to this. I had a committed partner a long time ago who I found out was habitually cheating with women in my social circle. I was mad at him and ending up dumping him because of it, but was I also mad at the two-faced women who smiled at me while interacting with us as a couple when they knew they were hooking up with him.

  21. What if the person your SO cheated you with was led to believe he/she was single and didn't know of your existence

  22. I think it's okay to feel mad, but depending on the circumstances the other person may not have even been aware that they were "the other person". At the end of the day it was still the person you put your trust in that hurt you, not the person they cheated with, so I feel the anger is being misplaced when it gets directed at someone who might have not even known. Even if they're a malicious pos who deliberately goes after people in relationships, they're still not the one who did the actual cheating

  23. Mhm! My first BF was a cheater. When I eventually found out, what also mentally messed me up was one girl was a ‘friend’. Turns out there’d been plenty of times when she’d half tell me something. Eg one time she apparently randomly ‘dumped’ into my BF at a local Greggs bakery. When I read their messages a few years later what actually happened was they’d met there before going back to his to fuck….. and they had an ongoing joke about wanting to bang each other’s pasties…… never been able to enjoy a Greggs sausage roll since. Fuckers. The both of them.

  24. Because they love the SO and sometimes have a history worth saving. The “other” can be as horrible as your imagination lets them be.

  25. Trying to hold on the a shred of pride in a situation that does a pretty good job of shredding it. If you blame your SO, then to SOME extent you have to accept that you were the dope who fell for them, AND you were the dope who didn't notice while all this was happening AND that this person who claimed to love you didn't love you enough not to cheat. Tough to swallow on top of everything else you're going through. If you just blame the other party, they're the boogeyman (or woman) who stole into your life and ruined everything.

  26. This but unironically. Ok not really, but a kernel of this to a degree. A woman is free to do what she wants obviously, but there’s a large grey area here where on the far side the guy has no self respect or backbone.

  27. I think this is the best answer... Also don't forget projection. Like in this case he can't punch his girlfriend in the face, so instead he punched the guy she cheated with.

  28. This 😄 except I'm the woman, he cheated and I attack both. Her because MINE. I want her to stay away or else... And him because the betrayal

  29. I was mad at my ex partner. But I was furious with the other person. He KNEW we were in a agreed upon monogamous relationship, and pursued my ex anyways. He gloated to my face that my ex was sleeping with him. Told me they he "did me a favor" by "making" my ex cheat on me. Fuck him. I would've forgiven my ex because I was so so so desperately in love, but I will NEVER forgive that piece of scum human who laughed at me as I was crying in front of them, saying I deserved it.

  30. Yeah, same boat for me. Really fucking sucks when it was someone you thought you could trust, or be friends with, to any degree. On top of the entire pain of the cheating.

  31. I agree with the top comment here, but also in some cases the person that the SO cheats on you with is also a piece of shit who knowingly did it to you, and/or may be a friend or something like that. There are sometimes valid reasons to be mad at BOTH your SO and the person they cheated with. Being mad at ONLY the the one they cheated with is still stupid, though.

  32. Because they’re angry and want to express that anger. He’s obviously (hopefully) not going to attack his girlfriend, so the other guy is the only other option I guess…

  33. My sister-in-law has been fighting with the same girl over a guy for the last 13 years. These girls BOTH have two children each with the guy, alternating between them. So the oldest is my SIL, then the next is the other girl, then my SIL again, then the other girl again.

  34. In my opinion, it’s due to a sort of old-fashioned patriarchal thinking. The idea that your spouse belongs to you, and somebody else getting with them makes them like a thief.

  35. Most satisfying thing in my life was when my ex and former best friend broke up because he caught her cheating. He tried talking so much shit after she cheated on me with him and tried making it seem like he won some big prize and I told him he could have her and good luck. At least I found out early on. He married her and had a kid with her.

  36. I think a factor in this scenario is that its better to beat the brakes off the dude she cheated with than beat the girlfriend

  37. I think to some degree, at least in some relationships, the partner is seen as a possession . E.g. "that guy STOLE my girl from me. "

  38. Because when you chose to stay with the perpetrator, naturally your anger is taken out on the accomplice. It’s like parents who blame their kids best friends for their child’s behavior.

  39. Ignorance and immaturity. Some people can't contain their rage and want to hurt the people involved in causing them to hurt, regardless of the circumstances.

  40. ^ this right here. People who you know who willingly screw you over to bang your S/O need to get curb checked. Then the S/O needs to get the boot.

  41. Home wreckers are a myth. If someone was able to come in and destroy your relationship it's because your partner opened the door and let them in. Locate your dignity and end it. Everyone in a monogamous relationship deserves that something special that you only share with each other. There are no excuses or exceptions.

  42. Having no attachment to the other person makes it easier to hate them as well as act as a coping mechanism to believe that their partner was coerced rather than willingly choosing to betray their trust.

  43. This is a good question. I have a female friend who has a husband and he is always cheating on her and she is always getting so mad at the woman . Trying to ruin the woman's life and staying with her husband and I taken a toll on our friendship

  44. Because people who aren't used to taking responsibility for their own actions usually won't hold other people to that same standard. It's not something that is part of their character, so it doesn't even cross their mind that their partner made the choice, so they're just as responsible for what happened. And they would rather get mad at the other person than have to admit that their partner doesn't love them anymore...

  45. I for some reason was the opposite. I ended up becoming friends with the dude because we drunkenly bonded over what a trash person she was.

  46. There are guys out there that will fight someone for using their parking space. Is this really surprising?

  47. Did he have no anger for his SO? My guess is he was angry at both of them, but hit the other dude because he felt emasculated.

  48. Being cheated on brings up feelings of inadequacy, insecurity, and fear about the relationship. Directing anger at the person who they cheated on you with is deflection from personal feelings, anger or disappointment with their partner, or avoidance of addressing the relationship issues.

  49. Betrayal. The most painful beast. One in love has made themselves vulnerable, entrusted themselves to another. One feels a fool when trust is broken, for having trusted. No one wants to feel a fool, to accept that the very person one trusted could hurt one so badly. It is easier to see it as someone else's fault and put the anger and anguish with a stranger. It just hurts too much to believe it was one's partner.

  50. It’s related to fiction, but it’s like every fictional character ever yelling at their friend for ‘allowing the enemy to convince them.’

  51. I think many people are territorial and partially feel they own their significant other, almost like an object. The other person is the threatening entity, trying to take something that’s theirs. So they lash out at said person.

  52. Yeah I think it’s this. The other guy has basically publicly humiliated the BF by sleeping with his GF. The implication is the BF is sexually unfit and too weak to hold onto his partner. The only way for the BF to regain standing is by confronting the other man.

  53. Idk but i noticed this particularly with women like if a girl tells her friend the guy is cheating on them they'll turn on the friend instead of dumping the guy

  54. Old housemate was cheating on his GF. She got told so by multiple people. GF screamed at everyone that they were lying (for whatever reason), burnt a bunch of bridges with her friends by calling them liars, then married the guy and had kids with him. He still cheats on her.

  55. Because your friend is not very smart. He should leave his SO as soon as he found out she's cheating. If she didn't allow that man didn't' do that.

  56. Depends on context. If the other party knew you existed and still participated? Yeah equal parts hatred. If they were oblivious to your existence, then they are the same as you.

  57. I still don't understand equal parts hatred. Unless the 3rd party is a friend, they have zero obligation to you personally. They have a societal obligation to not be a dirtbag, but that's it.

  58. I was that third person once. Was not told there was already a relationship going on. Sometimes the cheater lies. No violence in my story.

  59. Often because they don't respect their partner in the first place, see them as lesser than themselves (unequal relationship) and consider their SO as passive (she/he was tricked into it, are too fragile, are to naive, has emotionally clouded judgment) while the other person is the one they see as the one "taking away" from them.

  60. It varies from person to person. When my SO cheated on me I was really upset with her because I felt like she should be loyal to me. I wasn't upset with my friend she slept with because our friendship dynamic didn't ever include "worrying about each others well being".

  61. I read somewhere either on a Reddit or Instagram that someone said it's a psychological phenomena of disconnection from reality.

  62. Sad that so many people already fall so far down that rabbit hole. Like you know there were so many signs that they were already ignoring that it's become habitual to ignore the bigger ones that happen later.

  63. I think it depends on the relationship with the paramour. Did he know him before? Did he know the couple? In that case it’d be hard not to have anger directed at both, but the third party is the easy target. If it’s some random Dong your woman jumped on, 100% of the blame should be hers.

  64. Often it's because if they hold the SO responsible then they have to admit they made a bad choice in choosing a partner. That sort of self reflection in the heat of the moment of finding out isn't always possible.

  65. Unbeknownst to me, i had a girl cheat on her boyfriend with me. It was a one time thing, just casual sex. But the guy found out about it and i told him i didn't know they were dating and apologized to him. He wasn't even mad at me, he just broke up with her and the dude and i became friends after that.

  66. When my ex cheated on me , I got mad at him -not her. She had no idea he was in a committed relationship. If she did then it’s still his fault for stepping out. I was pretty much done with him anyway when I realized the depth of his indiscretions, I was really done.

  67. Because they other person “took” something that belongs to you. It’s archaic, but that’s the knee-jerk emotional response. It’s not common for people to calmly assess the situation. Imagine someone taking your pudding cup, which you left out unattended. Are you mad at yourself for not paying attention, mad at the pudding cup for not resisting or mad at the person who took you snack? Our emotions tell us that the offender knew they were taking something that belongs to you, and they did it anyway, making them a bad person.

  68. I never got it either. I guess if a stranger did something to me, I think of it as “they’re an asshole” but if someone I care about does the same thing, it actually hurts because I would think “they betrayed me”.

  69. Suppose I’m just weird, but when I found out my GF was cheating on me I wasn’t at all mad at the other guy she was with, if anything I felt bad for him. Both of us were being used. Not sure if he knew about me, but if he did, I can’t understand why he’d be willing to date (and eventually get engaged to) a cheater knowing she was out screwing me. As for my GF, I threw tons of bad thoughts her way and wished nothing but the worst for her.

  70. Since the mistress smiled in my face and sent me Xmas gifts while blowing him in stairwells and back alleys, I hated them both. They don't even deserve my hatred anymore. They are both trash and deserve each other.

  71. To look at your partner is to look in the mirror. Lots of people are unwilling to accept the part they themselves play in their own destruction.

  72. One of my coworkers caught his wife with another guy in the act. He beat the shit out of the guy.

  73. I think you should only concern yourself with the other person if you are certain they knew your SO was in a relationship or if you know them personally. If my husband cheated though I doubt I would even acknowledge the existence of the person he cheated with. The blame is on the person in the relationship who chooses to cheat.

  74. As others are saying people It is hard to accept their partner is a cheater and easier to place blame on another person. Also, I think jealousy towards another person can cause a strong aggressive reaction. I never understood this either though

  75. I’d be mad at both. But I would try to ascertain whether or not the guy knew. If he didn’t, I’d tell him and hopefully we both end up dodging the bullet. If he knows, mad at both.

  76. Well the easy talk is the one yelling at the dude you catch your girl cheating with. The hard one is the talk you have with your hopefully now ex.

  77. My stbx wife cheated on me three times (that I know of) over a 25 year relationship. The first time was in high-school and I blamed myself, I must not have given her what she wanted or needed. The second time was in college when we were engaged and I blamed the other guy, he must have convinced her her had what she wanted or needed. The third time was this year and I blame her. After months of counseling I now see that it was always her and no one else was to blame. She made the decision, she was always that type of person, and I'm much better off with her out of my life.

  78. Best I can guess is they don’t want to hate someone they love. They take the betrayal, and scapegoat someone less meaningful to them, so they can hold onto some of their good feelings about the loved one.

  79. I have always thought that was weird. Your spouse is the person who took vows and who is married to you. The other person owes you nothing.

  80. The only time to be mad at the other person AS MUCH AS your SO is if the other person is family or friend.

  81. Homewreckers. I mean if this is a wife/husband cheating and destroying their lives together, then getting mad at the other person is easy. You've known this person for decades, had family together, been through a bunch together yada yada. It's just easier.

  82. My boyfriend cheated on me and got the girl pregnant. I had never met the girl but the girl KNEW I was in a relationship with him and blocked me from his phone on his social media accounts.

  83. When it happened to me I hated them both equally because he was my best friend. I loved him like a brother and I thought she was the love of my life. Boy was I wrong.

  84. Because they love their SO, but at the moment that they learn that they cheated, they hate them. They can't reconcile the two emotions, so they transfer the feelings of hate toward the other person.

  85. It's so much easier to blame someone you don't know rather than the one you love. Your brain automatically comes up with excuses for them but not for the other woman/man.

  86. I think if somebody knows someone have a partner and still willingly go along with it they're just as bad as the one cheating.

  87. Women control s** she has to say yes, otherwise, it's rape. But if he attacks the women he goes to jail. Women have all the power when it comes to s**

  88. Lotta people in this thread lucky enough to have not been cheated on when the other person knew you were in a relationship. It's insane to act like people should just forgive everyone except the bf/gf. Especially when it's someone you're personally friends with and thought you could trust.

  89. I understand the mentality being centered around denial, because people don't want to believe that their partner intentionally did something like that.

  90. My opinion is if the person is single and hooking up with someone in a relationship they are not doing anything wrong.

  91. Theres only one circumstance where you can’t be angry at the other guy/girl and that is if your partner never mentioned you and pretended to be single and they believed it.

  92. I never understood this. The way I see it, the other person has little to no fault in this matter, if it wasn’t them it would’ve been someone else. I’ve been cheated on before and all of the sadness and anger was toward my SO (anger as in I was mad, I never did anything to them) I broke up immediately both times and never talked to them again. It was my SO decision to cheat, the other person might have participated, but if your SO didn’t give them consent or the chance, they wouldn’t have been able to do anything.

  93. I had an ex cheat on me with some guy on a night out, I got rid of her but I still had a whole lot of anger and thought fuck it imma go in on the guy too. Managed to get his Snapchat and he ended up actually not knowing she was taken, multiple people stated she made the first move and he was trying to stop her from kissing him multiple times but she wouldn’t listen.

  94. People tend to hate the person who made them feel guilty, not the actual cause of the guilt - that one's a pretty universal truth.

  95. 2 is what I don’t understand. How is it disrespectful? The woman that fucked my man didn’t disrespect me. She owed me nothing. She made no promises to me, implicitly or explicitly, about who she would or would not sleep with.

  96. Because sexual exclusivity is rooted in possession. Therefore, for the people who believe in sexual exclusivity, the threat is the rival that is trying to steal their possession.

  97. Getting the daily stretches in there by shoehorning irrelevant politics into everything non-political, gold star for you buddy.

  98. I also just don't know why you have to get mad at anyone. If someone cheats on you it's because they don't love you anymore or never did in the first place. why get angry about it people change it not your fault or there's. It a totally dick move to not just be honest and break up/separate with the person. then go sleep with whoever you want. maybe I'm the crazy one but I would hate to make someone feel trapped in a relationship with me. That's not good for you or them.

  99. If he didn't know about your friend then it's all on the girl and he should take issue with her. If this isn't the case then it's probably because the cheating guy knew about your friend and still disrespected him and his relationship with the girl, filling her head with ideas and disarming her over time.

  100. I have found that I hold both people accountable in situations like this unless the person the cheater cheated with wasn’t aware. In which case they should not be held accountable.

  101. That was a question I used to ask myself a lot until I was in the situation itself. I feel like if the other person knew of the SO then yeah he/she got that right to challenge them. But if that other person didn’t know he/she was taken, then take it out hon your SO

  102. I personally would hate both people sorry just would. The spouse for not being honest and if the gf or bf of spouse knew of marriage that’s terrible too, I just don’t know why people can’t be honest and just say their not happy and then move on. They obviously didn’t care about spouse when they cheated so why care after. Let that person go so they can heal themselves rather then being fucked with and lied to just to cover Chester’s tracts…

  103. I think the reason a guy would want to attack the ‘other man’ is because he can’t take out the anger and surprise on his female SO.

  104. Because people are idiots and they’d rather direct their anger to the third party then solve a problem in the relationship

  105. Because if you kick his ass, it is simple battery. Beat her ass and it is domestic violence. Much worse in the courts and in public opinion.

  106. If i knew the guy, i would take as disrespect and want to beat the shit out them. Would i? Probably not but i would want to. If i didnt know the guy and he didnt know she was my gf then i wouldnt be mad at him.

  107. How does that real man would know it's someone's girl or wife? A real man is extrasens I suppose

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