Unless you've been living under a log or in the far corners of Appalachia, you've likely seen the bumper stickers with the single word, "coexist". The sticker is filled with various symbols of different worship.
In pondering that sentiment, the question arises "Can you coexist with a cheater?"
Although on the surface, the message of 'let's just get along' sounds good, yet, there's some problems. If you've read the blog, you'll see many heart breaking responses from spouses struggling when it comes to living with a cheater.
The problem comes when the cheater still worships affairs.Like the various worship symbols, the active cheater continues worshiping themselves.
Anytime they hear a booty call, they respond. Anytime the lover demands their attention, they take it from you.
Cheaters continuing idealizing and desiring their infidelity create problems. They view infidelity as their savior and what will cure their ills.
Like the medicine show elixers, they act like the affair will restore their youth, vitality, energy, improve libido and a host of other benefits. For them, the affair is a cure all.
They trust in the affair, more than they trust in their relationship with you.
For them, cheating is the center of their lives. Everything revolves around them fulfilling their urges.
When a cheater worships affairs, their heart is not toward you and your marriage. This is what makes 'coexistence' with that kind of cheater impossible.
I like a quote I came across. "You cannot saved the damned who revel in their damnation".
Their heart is toward someone else. Their focus is elsewhere. The object of their affection is on an alien lifestyle.
This is why when it's time for affair recovery, there is no room for 'coexistence' with the lover and affairs in general. You have to hate affairs in all forms and fashions. You can't have tolerance for them even in terms of watching shows making light of them.
When it comes to affairs, coexistence is surrender. There is no middle ground during affair recovery. Sure, there may be slips and backsliding, but that's another matter. In such cases, the cheater is trying but failing which is very different from continuing in their cheating mindset.
If you think you can coexist with a cheater still bent on cheating, the two of you will live in separate worlds. One world will eventually take over and control the other.
This is why you can't coexist with the cheating mindset. When the cheater still looks to infidelity for their meaning and purpose, there's no place for your marriage.
The no toleration of cheating sounds harsh, but it's necessary for a healthy marriage. It sounds harsh, but the realities you are facing are harsh ones.