Serial Cheater: What Makes One, 14 Signs to Watch & What to Do Next

Everyone thinks they know what to do if their partner cheats. But you don’t know until you’re in it. If you’re with a serial cheater however, get out. 

serial cheater signs

Cheating is a hugely divisive subject. You might think you know what you would do if your partner ever cheated on you. But, when it happens, you will probably feel very differently. There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to whether you should stay, go, see what happens, etc. You can only do what feels right to you. After all, you know your partner and the relationship you have. But, if you have a serial cheater issue, then the only real answer is to leave.

Once could be a mistake, twice is a choice.

Of course, if someone cheats once, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll cheat again. However, serial cheaters are a whole different story.

Cheating is their middle name. They’re addicted to jumping from one relationship to another or just simply constantly cheating on their partners. [Read: What is cheating in a relationship? The truth most people ignore]

We’re all for advocating sexual freedom, but not when it hurts another person. If that’s what you want to do, be single while doing it.

What is a serial cheater?

You might wonder why we’re even posing this question, but does serial cheating mean twice, more, or what? Also, what constitutes cheating?

It’s a grey area and it’s something you need to think carefully about. [Read: To cheat or not to cheat – A guide to make up your mind]

For one person, kissing is cheating. Another person might not be too bothered about kissing, but they draw a very red line against any sexual contact.

For other people, they may be able to forgive as long as there were no feelings and no major emotional connection. It’s really down to you to decide what you define as cheating. You might think you could handle kissing, but once you find out your partner did it, how would you handle it?

This is the issue with cheating – it throws your entire system in the air. You think you know, but then you don’t until you’re in it. So, when you’re dealing with a serial cheater, the whole thing becomes ten times worse and you know, at the end of the day, there’s only one answer.

One thing we do know is that a serial cheater is someone who cheats more than once. It might be just kissing one time and then moving on to sex with another. It could be sex the first time and then you forgive them and they kiss someone else after that.

Again, you have to choose whether their actions fit in with your definition of cheating and how you feel about it. [Read: Who cheats more, men or women? How to have a cheat-free romance]

Key serial cheater signs – How to know if you’re in a relationship with one

Unless you’ve talked about being in an open relationship, most people will not be down with the idea of their partner sleeping with other people behind their back.

If you’ve gotten yourself into a relationship with a Casanova-type character, not only should you get an STI test, but you should also get yourself out of that relationship. But how do you even know you’re dating a serial cheater?

There are always signs. And once you know the serial cheater signs, it’ll be easy to spot them.

1. They’ve cheated on you before

Okay, we know we said just because someone cheats it doesn’t mean they’ll do it again, which is true. However, it does increase the odds of them doing it again.

We didn’t mean to calm you down and then make you freak out again. You need to do some digging and find out how many relationships your partner’s been in and why they didn’t work out. That’s how you’ll find the truth.

If they have a pattern of regularly cheating on partners, well, you have yourself a serial cheater. [Read: 18 ingenious ways to catch a cheating partner in the act]

2. They fear or shy away from intimacy

Maybe when you two have sex, they only like doggy style. Now, that’s not a bad thing, but it is when you want to have an intimate experience.

If they’re avoiding intimate sexual positions and moments with you, it’s because they’re scared of opening up and becoming vulnerable to you. This also means that they’ll develop feelings and then that kind of creates a hole in their plan of fucking whoever they want. [Read: Being sneaky in a relationship – Is it really such a bad thing?]

3. They have many friends of the opposite sex

Listen, you can have many friends of the opposite sex and it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re sleeping with them.

But, if your partner is hanging out mostly with people of the opposite sex, well, there’s usually a reason. It might be totally innocent but if you notice this sign along with others, then you might want to turn on your wariness radar to watch out for a serial cheater.

4. They haven’t committed to you

If you two have been “together” for a while but they’re not willing to commit, it’s because they don’t want to. It’s really that simple. They don’t want to be taken off the market because they’re still looking around.

Now, if you’re happy with that because you don’t want to be tied down either, go for it. But, if you want more, then you’re probably looking in the wrong place. [Read: Talking vs Dating – How to tell them apart and know your exact status]

5. You don’t really know much about them

It’s like you know them but you don’t really know them. You two haven’t actually had a deep conversation about anything.

Maybe you mentioned your traumatizing childhood, but, your partner hasn’t whispered a word. That’s because they’re holding large portions of their life and experiences back.

Serial cheaters don’t want to share with you because they’re not being true to you. You can’t fully open up to someone when you’re hiding things, can you?

6. They like taking risks

A serial cheater loves to take risks.

We mean, isn’t cheating behind your partner’s back a risk? Of course, it is. Taking risks is thrilling, it’s living on the edge. So, if your partner is known as a bit of an adrenaline junkie, then be cautious. [Read: 20 veiled signs your boyfriend is cheating already]

Of course, just because your partner has shown an interest in skydiving at some point, perhaps on their bucket list, doesn’t mean they’re about to cheat, or have done. But if risky behavior and a lack of following rules are in their blood, you might want to keep an eye on that.

7. You don’t have fights

No one likes to fight, but it’s actually crucial in a relationship. People disagree, and that’s totally normal. When you fight, it brings the relationship closer together. If you and your partner aren’t fighting, or if they’re not responding to your concerns, it shows that they don’t actually care.

We fight because we feel passionate about something. We care about something and we want to make things better, usually the relationship.

If there’s no fighting, that doesn’t mean it’s all harmonious, it means there isn’t much emotion there. Of course, you shouldn’t be at each others’ throats 24/7 either, but occasional arguments are very normal. [Read: Why fighting in a relationship is important and how to do it right]

8. Their habits change

If all of a sudden their regular daily habits and routines change, you should be suspicious. If you’re not sure about any of the other signs on this list, pay attention to this one.

People’s actions always expose the truth. And though they may be hiding what they’re doing to you, you’ll be able to notice what they’ve stopped doing. 

Human beings are creatures of habit and nobody is so spontaneous that they do something totally different every single day, or stop doing the things they have always done all of a sudden. [Read: How to get over someone cheating on you and repair the damage]

9. Your sex life isn’t what it used to be

The sex you used to have with your partner was sensual, hot, and passionate. Now, it’s dry and dull. What a switch, right?

Well, that’s not because they’ve lost their libido. It’s because they’re being hot and sensual with someone else. Things like this just don’t switch without reason.

But, don’t panic if this is the only reason you can agree with. It’s normal for sex to become boring or a bit samey when you’ve been with someone for a long time. It doesn’t necessarily mean they’re a serial cheater or that they’re getting it from someone else. It could be that they’re tired or stressed out with work.

Make an effort to spice things up, perhaps initiate sex yourself a few times, and see if that makes a difference. If not, you might have a problem on your hands. [Read: How to spice up your sex life in 30 super sexy ways]

10. It’s all about gift-giving

Getting a surprise gift every now and then is great. However, those gifts can be given just to mask what they’ve been doing behind your back.

If your partner is loading you up with gifts all the time, it’s probably because they’re feeling guilty. [Read: Emotional cheating and 10 bad things it can do to you]

11. Their apologies lack real meaning

If you catch them cheating on you, they’ll most likely apologize.

However, apologizing is easy. What’s hard is when it’s genuine. You need to look at the substance within the apology.

Did your partner just say, “sorry” and walk away? Yeah, they don’t actually give a shit. Or, did they just say that it didn’t mean anything and refuse to meet your eye at the time of saying it?

You can easily figure out whether someone’s apology is genuine or not by watching their body language – it never lies.

12. “Work” becomes a priority

Ah yes, the classic “I have to stay at the office a little longer tonight” routine. We don’t care if you’re a man or woman, please, do not fall for this shit. Okay, there are some people that do actually have to stay at the office longer than expected, but for many people, it’s an excuse.

If all of a sudden their job replaces you, well, it’s probably not work that they’re doing. [Confession: I cheated on my boyfriend and feel a lot better!]

13. They love the chase

Do you remember what it was like before you two were dating?

The cat and mouse game that you both played? Maybe you played a hard game and your partner loved it. But now that they have you, it’s a different story.

Now, the thrill is gone but what really made them excited was the chase, so, naturally, they have to chase again. [Read: Is flirting cheating when you’re in a relationship?]

Some people are totally addicted to the thrill of the chase. When a relationship settles down, that first flourish of excitement abates. Most of us don’t mind because it’s replaced by something else, something much better. But, for those who are addicted to the first chase, it’s simply not enough. [Read: Why are men so addicted to the high of a chase?]

14. Their long-term relationship history doesn’t exist

They may have dated a couple of people, but other than that, nothing. Not a single committed relationship that’s lasted longer than three months.

Now, if you’re nineteen, that’s not a big deal but if you’re in your late twenties, that’s a warning sign – a big one. Maybe they’re not serial cheaters, but it could mean they have commitment issues. [Read: Getting back with a cheater – Is that even possible?]

So, what should you do now?

Well, that’s up to you. 

But, if you can genuinely nod along to these serial cheater signs and it’s not the first time they’ve cheated on you either, you might want to start thinking about leaving. In fact, you should leave. 

You really deserve someone who will dedicate themselves to you. It’s no good worrying about what your partner is up to when you’re not around or questioning whether their excuse for working late is genuine or not. How can you ever rest?

You’ll be constantly paranoid and questioning everything. In the end, you’ll probably drive yourself crazy. [Read: How to forgive someone – 15 positive ways to unburden your mind]

If you want to be happy in a relationship, you need to be able to trust them. You can’t trust a serial cheater!

For sure, people make mistakes, but they don’t make them more than once if they really learned their lessons. If your partner made a cheating mistake in the past and you decided to forgive them, they should do everything they can to build the trust back up and help you to feel comfortable that it’s not going to happen again.

If they’re throwing these serial cheater signs your way, they’re not doing any of that. In fact, they’re doing the total opposite.

Get out of there, you deserve much better. 

[Read: Should you ever forgive a cheating partner? The thing you must know before deciding]

It’s highly likely that you’ll encounter a serial cheater throughout your dating life. But as fast as you meet them, you’ll want to let them go even faster.

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The editorial team of LovePanky comprises relationship experts and real-life experts that share their experiences and life lessons. If you want the best love ad...