9 Thought Patterns & Beliefs Serial Cheaters Have In Common

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

There are countless reasons why people cheat on their partners, which is why it can be tough to pinpoint exactly what's going through their head when they strike up an affair. There are, however, a few thoughts and beliefs many serial cheaters have in common, that may help explain why they turn it into a habit.

For some people, it can be chalked up to how they view the world, and everyone in it. "Some serial cheaters meet the criteria for narcissistic personality disorder or have many of the characteristics of a narcissist," therapist Virginia Williamson, LMFT, of Collaborative Counseling Group, tells Bustle. "These serial cheaters believe it is their right to cheat [and] view themselves as superior to their partners." These folks rarely think twice before cheating — and are even less likely to feel bad about it.

There are people, though, who turn to cheating due to low self-esteem or unhealthy attachment styles, Williamson says. They may try to sabotage their relationship, even though it's going well, because they expect it will end anyway. Or they may turn to others for a quick confidence boost.

Whatever the case may be, it is possible for a serial cheater to turn things around if they want to, usually by going to therapy. As Williamson says, "The bottom line is that anyone can alter [their] behavior if [they're] truly invested in doing so." Here are a few thoughts and beliefs many serial cheaters have in common, according to experts.