Self discipline and self control are easier to conceptualize than they are to put in practice. They are wonderful attributes to have but the virtue of being selfless often takes a back seat to self gratification. Most humans tend to want to be gratified before they can think of satisfying others. Human beings are naturally selfish and self centered. Someone once said we all co-chair the – “what’s in it for me company”. It is okay to self love and self preserve first; otherwise you could not really effectively love and serve others.

Self control, self discipline and self restraint are wonderful qualities, but time and time again, we find that being too controlled to the point of anal retentiveness can lead to other anomalies of social, physical and emotional proportions. Human beings must necessarily have accessible outlets to free excess pent up emotion before it becomes harmful. There are many positive forms of outlets; crying, screaming, exercising, relaxation techniques, movies, dancing, sex etc. One has to find out what works best for one

It is not so easy to be considerate of other people’s feelings when life disappoints one. Acceptance of a partner’s shortcomings is a personal and magnanimous gesture. Everyone steps out of line some time because there are no perfect living human beings. Our sense of ethics is usually dependent on what we have at stake and its level of importance to our goals in life. Marriage requires hope and endurance, hope for change and wonderful things leads to the endurance of pain and human frailties.

It takes a high level of commitment and maturity to a marriage/union for one to make a conscious decision to stay faithful. It takes a high level of self control to realize that you cannot have every delectable and tempting desert you see. You have to know that some things are not just good for you and not everything that is good for you is for you, either. You have to understand that no matter how much you eat today, you will be hungry tomorrow; you will never have enough. There will always be beautiful people available everywhere, how many will you have? If you consciously enter into a matrimonial vow, you must respect it as much as you expect your partner to respect his or hers.

Many people in committed relationships do not cheat for fear of getting caught. In other words, they may have come close to, considered or thought of cheating but did not. The reality is that not all men or women have mastered the art of self discipline to the point of faithfulness to one person. Although many subscribe to the institution of marriage and all its merits; sexual exclusivity is not realistic for all. This is why my book “Till Cheating Do Us Part” addresses some of the reasons around this point.

One must do a thorough homework before embarking on a marital journey. “For better for worse” is a vow, not just a rhyme to recite mindlessly. Be informed about the “for worse” part of the union and be sure you can handle it before committing. You are promising to forsake all others, can you? You promise to love and to hold till death do you part, will you when he or she becomes a lying cheating murderous lout?

A lot of people say “I will kill you, if you do that (referring to a busted cheating spouse), to me”. Many do carry out these threats; but that is contrary to their marital vows. Some couples retaliate by going out and committing their own adultery, to even the score. All these reactions are stupid and juvenile because you must not let others drag you down to where you did not plan to go. It is onerous on each of us to understand our partners; before we commit to be with them forever. Review the checklist in “Till Cheating Do Us Part”.

When you understand the personalities you deal with; you will know what to expect and how to adjust your hopes and dreams. Many cheat because they lack emotional support, physical fulfillment, seek the thrill of being on the edge, are sexually insatiable, lack love, in competition or jealous of the success of spouse, feel left in the shadow and unimportant, feel a sense of entitlement as a particular gender, are under the influence, secretly want to be bad, as in cool; or they simply feel they are above the restrictive rules of a committed relationship.

There are many varieties of marriages and relationships where both parties understand and agree to cheat openly or discreetly. Some marriages are really disguised business arrangements under the cloak of marriage. Basically, marriages are between the involved individuals and outsiders should all mind their own businesses, because nobody knows the secret pacts people make. For those that did not do their homework before committing and those that innocently got caught up in the whirlwind of romance and broken trust, welcome to life, as you live and learn.

As difficult and heartbreaking as infidelity may be, the pain and humiliation can be transcended and the victims can look forward to worthwhile futures with proper and quick intervention. They must not accept the guilt and responsibility for the indiscretions of their inconsiderate partners. Disappointments are necessary parts life because they teach us humility, which enables us to become truly compassionate.

Nothing is the end of the world or truly beyond pardon; although it would appear so as a horrible experience unfolds and the pain mounts. Victims must make the conscious efforts to pick up the pieces. This is only possible with forgiveness. We must forgive because we are all infallible and cannot allow blind anger to mortgage our future with distrust and bitterness. No matter what happened in the past, the future is always full of endless possibilities.

Healing is a realistic and possible expectation. It is not going to be easy because the mind is a tricky thing and will replay the event for a long time; especially every time your partner (new or old) leaves your sight. Time heals all wounds and eventually the experience will slip away into the abyss. Victims must not close their minds off to future wholesome love and happiness with worthy partners; whoever they decide to be with. Future happiness is entirely dependent on the victims’ personal choice.

Author's Bio: 

Rehabilitation Consultant, Motivational Speaker, Trainer and Author of "A Slice of Africa", "Innocence Interrupted" and "Till Cheating Do Us Part".