Do you ask dates if they have cheated? - Page 2 - Talk About Marriage
Life After Divorce Divorce is complicated, and change is never easy to cope with. Use this section for help and advice on living life after a divorce.

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post #16 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 08:16 AM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

I never really did casual dating. I wasn't in a hurry, didn't need a man, and wasn't willing to settle - but I was looking for a relationship partner rather than a casual fling. So, I always figured that it was probably best to be myself, even on a first date. That meant I wasn't going to hide or white-wash my own baggage and I'd prefer the guy didn't do that with his own either. In my experience, everyone on the dating scene in my age range has baggage. The best you can hope for is to have worked your own down to carry-on size, and to find someone in similar circumstances. I was never looking for someone with no baggage, just someone who's baggage complemented my own.

So, if a guy was freaked out or turned off by me being direct about the fact that my marriage broke up due to my husband's infidelity and that cheating is a deal-breaker for me, then I just figure we weren't compatible. That's good to know sooner rather than later. I don't lead with it, I'm not confrontational, I don't belabor the point, I'm not angry or agitated about it. I'm willing to answer non-insulting questions about my relationship history honestly, and I expect the same from a prospective partner. I also want to know what his deal-breakers are, etc. There are ways to have this conversation - or a series of them - without being overly aggressive. But I much preferred to not waste time with a man who was uncomfortable discussing difficult or painful topics directly.

And, honestly, plenty of quality men were not put off by my directness or by my baggage. The ones who were, were simply not compatible partners for me. No harm, no foul. We just weren't a good match.


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post #17 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 09:10 AM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

I think few people will answer honestly if they have cheated, especially early in the dating process. Some may have, but learned their lesson, and don't want their past to affect their future. Many will be offended, even if they answer the question honestly or have never cheated. I would be offended, and I've never cheated - asking would indicate a lack of trust or perhaps lasting damage from a prior relationship, and raises a red flag for me. This is a discussion (along with many other questions) that I might be willing to have if we are getting very serious about a lasting relationship. Mostly, I trust my judgment about people and will go with that if I'm interested in them. So far, it hasn't been an issue or problem.

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post #18 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 09:19 AM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

joannacroc... I am going to be a tad open in my personal experiences here.

When I met my current wife she had an 18 month old son. I was finishing a failed marriage (caught that wife in bed with another man in our apartment) and my trust level was about zero.

My wife asked me out for our first date and it was great... I never laughed so much and I was a pretty walled-in guy at the time. Our second date I met her at her door and was introduced to her son. Needless to say, I was interested in how single parenthood was working and the dynamics that caused it.

She left her first husband to have an affair with another married man with two children... both her and that man's wife became pregnant at the same time... he chose his family leaving her to figure it out. Even though her current husband would have taken her back, and pregnant with another man's child (I'll never understand some European rationals) she divorced her husband because she felt he had done nothing to deserve this and needed to own her poor choices.

I was a little unsettled to say the least... but I thought ok, let's see where this goes tonight.

On our third date, I asked her in essence "So, what did you learn Dorothy"... her answer was going to make a difference if a 4th date was to be.

Even through all our challenges, past and present... and there are mountains of them that I brought to the table, her answer, her voice, her eyes told me that if there was anything I had to worry about, infidelity was not going to be one of them.

We've been together near 29 years now, 27 of them married... and her fidelity has been true, this I know being an experienced betrayed.

It's all in the eyes... your inner voice will tell you, trust me, our mistake is our infatuation with new interests can cloud that if one is not careful.

There is a Cherokee saying:

Everything in life comes to you as a teacher. Pay Attention. Learn quickly.

Be with peace...
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post #19 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 10:23 AM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

Since I am not looking for a LTR anymore, I don't ask this question, don't care.

I do, however, look for any indication they are married, sometimes ask. You would be very surprised.
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post #20 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 11:17 AM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

I wouldn't mind being asked, because I can honestly answer "No". Interesting question though. I've never flat out asked this.

I have seen huge red flags before though. A couple women I dated post-divorce...after me telling them the horrible story of my exww's infidelity, they had remarks like "well I'm sure you weren't perfect either" or "there was probably a reason". Yeah - not going to be in any kind of ltr with people who hold that view.
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post #21 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 11:28 AM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

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Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
More than one wanted to argue that "no-cheaters" was a ridiculously high standard to expect in a man.
Nah, it's not. We're out there. :-)
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post #22 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 01:32 PM
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Hmmm...have to figure out how to quote from my phone....ugh. Anyways, I think lieing is like a leaky faucet...starts out small and unless you change the washer just gets worse. Besides...why lie anyways...makes the lier's life more stressful as they have to remember the story...tough to do when people start digging or you are off your game.

OP...just keep listening ..probe a lititle deeper on stories shared or experiences...triangulate...and you can spot gaps unless they are really on their game...
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post #23 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 01:43 PM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

LOL seriously? Hahaha what makes you think you'll get a confession even if it's true, well unless you say something like "I was a cheater... blah blah blah" but then that just discredits yourself especially if she hasn't cheated lol

Nay!

I say the best way is to focus on their qualities, are they honest? are they transparent? how strong is their will? how committed are they to their friends and loved ones? these are things you can't ask them. These are things they need to prove.
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post #24 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 05:54 PM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

I've discovered that if two people hit it off, things just come up naturally. I recently chatted with a woman on-line and went out with her once. We both talked about our past marriages and divorce because it just came up naturally; however, I don't think I would worry about it on a first date if it didn't come up naturally.

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post #25 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 06:15 PM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

I think this and a lot of other issues can come up in conversation over a few dates. Directly asking about infidelity is probably not going to give very useful information, but talking about the issue in general to see if they think it is a big deal might tell you something. Very similar to the way you might discuss the general class of sexual interests, or religion.

If I were dating, I'd find a way to let someone know:

1), I think infidelity is bad, but not end-of-the-world bad. Something that can be forgiven. So I'd be a bad match for someone who does not think it is forgivable.

2). I enjoy passionate and varied sex. So I'd be a bad match for someone who wants a limited sex life.

3). I'm not religious, but accept other religions. I do like to discuss religion. So I'd be a bad match for someone who had a very strick viuew of religion.

4), I don't particular like children.

This sort of information is valuabe to both parties. Its not an issue of being "interrogated", but just finding out fairly soon about basic incompatibilities on things where neither is likely to change.

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post #26 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-15-2016, 06:18 PM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

Well it is like I said, I think the topic just comes up naturally when you talk about your past life. I am sure that some will lie about it, that is the nature of the beast but as Rowan said, if someone is going to get offended over a question, they aren't for me anyways. In fact, they need to grow up and get over themselves. Anyone who has been thru a divorce should expect that whoever they meet will have questions and expect answers. If they aren't willing to give one or get offended, Bye-bye!

At the center of every moMEnt of my life is ME!
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post #27 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-19-2016, 03:09 PM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

Usually on a first meet and first date I never bring anything up like that.... unless they do.

If I see anything potential-wise I try to expand the chats between 1st and 2nd date. 98% of the time.... it

is brought up. Most of the time, she brings it up or I "set the table" for her to bring it up.

If I have to set the table, it's always phone chat, listen and observe. If you reach the third date,

casually bring it up and compare the two. Then you'll get your answer...

A-Every single thing that has ever happened in your life is preparing you for a moment that is yet to come.
B-We know what we are, but know not what we may be
C-Never make the person in your present pay for the sins committed by people from your past
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post #28 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-19-2016, 03:28 PM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

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Originally Posted by joannacroc View Post
Like a lot of people on TAM, I have seen firsthand how awful the effects of cheating can be. It was pretty devastating and I feel like I have worked on myself to the point to where I can trust my own judgment, and to where I don't have an automatic distrust of people in general, and men in particular.

I'm now wondering if there is a way to ask someone when you're first going out with them: "Have you ever cheated?" I saw someone do it on a TV program recently, and it occurred to me: wow, that's really ballsy, but as important a question as something like "ever been in jail?" to me.

Like any other question you ask someone when you first date, of course, they might not answer honestly. If they have cheated before, they might so "no," but there is a small chance if they answer honestly, it could help weed out people who have cheated in the past, and have poor boundaries.

I can't quite find a good time to ask, and feel like it's an awkward and very personal question, but one whose answer is kind of important to me. If they have cheated in the past, it's kind of a deal breaker.

1) What is a good way to phrase the question so they won't feel offended?
2) Is it OK to ask someone this?
3) If so, when should I ask? First date? Second date?
If I were asked that on a first, second, tenth date, I'd be very, very wary.

One of the things that 'the books' say that women do far more than men is continue to look for red flags.

Red flags are a way to use an easy-to-spot litmus test, so that you don't have to depend on your actual ability to get to know someone properly. "If he hates his mom, I won't have anything to do with him." Not that I hate my mom, but I met a woman once who hated HER mom, and as I got to know the family, they ALL hated her and when I met the woman, I saw why. Litmus tests are shortcuts and like all shortcuts, they make things easy, but less accurate.

I seriously doubt that if a person had cheated in the past, a direct question about it probaly won't get a truthful answer, especially if you're early in the relationship (less than, say, six months).

But if it's really important to you, the way I get 'round to sorting out a person's likely behavior is to engage in conversation about other topics, getting a general sense of how they approach life and people. This actually is part of that bigger thing called "getting to know someone".

What it means to "know someone" is that you understand how they make decisions, you understand what some of their dreams are, their long-term goals, what are their current joys and struggles and what are they doing about this. Most of "getting to know" falls right into "how do they make decisions."

Direct questions can be perceived as confrontational, so you simply have chats about third persons.

"One of the sales guys I work with told me something that - well, I'd have never thought of this before! When he and his wife got married, they wanted a simple affair and she just bought an off-the-rack dress, nothing custom. They got married, and then she took the dress back, saying it didn't fit the way she wanted it to."

Pause.

How does the person respond?

"Geeze, I'm frugal, but that's kind of low."

"Wow, cool, way to stick it to The Man, who deserves it!"

Those are two different answers. The second person is fully capable of doing things to intentionally hurt people. They may have ethics, but sometimes their ethics say that revenge is OK, and that there are people or organizations who deserve to be treated with less respect and/or honesty.

The first person hasn't revealed a whole lot, but at least they have exposed the fact that they consider their ethics before making decisions.


Just my thoughts and I'm just a mangy old dusty dawg....

There are three kinds of business. Your business, my business and God's business. Whose business are you in? -Byron Katie
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post #29 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-21-2016, 12:58 PM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

I actually ask and bring it up before we meet for the first time. I tell them my stance on it and that I won't be with a former cheater. You would think and people will tell you that "well they will just lie" but not true. Most of them are so engrained in the rug sweep, justification, don't judge me mode, that they will want to explain to you how they are the "exception to the rule". I mean it's scary how good this works.
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post #30 of 49 (permalink) Old 11-22-2016, 10:03 AM
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Re: Do you ask dates if they have cheated?

I usually find that we discuss cheating pretty early on and it comes naturally with the conversation of why did you get divorced. I don't mind asking/answering but always make sure I can change the topic after a short while to something more fun or the date ends up being pretty boring. Plus it's always a potential trigger so I don't want to spend too much time discussing it.
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