“But you made it easy for her to cheat on you.”


“Sure, she had an affair. But you made it easy for her to cheat on you.”

-A Stupid Thing Christians Say

I have heard or read a version of this statement more than once. It seems like a common mindset some have–even pastors–towards faithful spouses. And this is a subtle blame-shift.

For the ethics flunkies out there:

The level of difficulty or ease of committing a crime or sin has no bearing on who is responsible for committing said sin or crime!

-If a thief snatches grandma’s purse, the truly just do not blame grandma for not hitting him with her cane and thereby making it more difficult for him to have stolen the purse. The truly just hold the thief fully responsible for choosing to steal from a grandma. He is fully guilty for the theft.

-If a woman becomes drunk and passes out, the truly just do not hold her responsible for making it “easy” for her to be raped. The truly just hold the rapist responsible for violating her and the law. He could have chosen otherwise–e.g. call for a medical assistance for her–but instead he decided to exploit her vulnerability.

-If someone leaves their house’s door unlocked and a thief comes in to steal all their expensive possessions, the thief still is responsible alone for said crime. It does not matter whether or not the theft was hard or easy. The thief never ought to have stolen in the first place.

The circumstances of the marriage–good or ill–is immaterial as to the question of culpability when it comes to adultery. So, he made it easy for his wife to cheat on him? That does not mean that she is excused for choosing sin over godliness. And that does not make him responsible for being victimized by her.

Anyone who suggests otherwise is unjust, ungodly, and cruel to infidelity victims. Sadly, too many in the evangelical Christian world need this basic ethics refresher when it comes to infidelity.

8 thoughts on ““But you made it easy for her to cheat on you.””

  1. Hey DM,
    Really good posts or more so, posts that are speaking to me, of late.

    I got this exact response and the… duh, how could you not know he was cheating.

    Sadly, I really had no idea and never entertained the idea that ex husband was cheating until after he was “in love” with her and no longer had energy to hide the affair anymore.

    I was pregnant, I was working full time, I was in school part-time and yeah I really thought he was having issues with becoming a father for the first time, but never ever thought he was cheating my entire pregnancy. Now looking back was I naive, yes…. but I trusted my husband. My naivety does not make his cheating okay though.

    1. I don’t think naivete is always such a bad thing. Why would we expect someone to do something we couldn’t stomach doing? We would be sick to our stomachs if we pulled something like that. Having a conscience is not a bad thing.

  2. DM, I think it is wonderful the way you smash all the idiotic things people say regarding adultery to bits and pieces. Also, your blog is the only one that I have seen to address the issue that this is first and foremost a SIN against God. Not a mere bad choice, wrong move, a mistake, etc. But a full blown soul compromising sin that can lead to eternal damnation.

  3. I think most people, Christians and otherwise, do not like the fact that there are some things you can’t control. “But you made it easy for her to cheat on you,” is not only awful advice, it’s a nod towards being able to control someone else’s behavior with your own. It’s a very seductive idea to someone who just discovered they were cheated on because if it’s your fault, then you can fix it right? Not so.

  4. It’s also a great insult to God because by this faulty line of reasoning, one is insinuating that God made it easier for Israel to worship idols and that He could have been a better God.

  5. I am noticing that infidelity is accepted way too easily in society. It doesn’t seem to be that big of a deal to others. Sometimes it makes me wonder if my thinking is off. When then morals and values get tossed to the side. I believe anyone with decent morals and values would never say something like this because they would know without a doubt that the cheater behavior was unacceptable under any conditions.

    1. We accept that killing is wrong. That stealing is wrong. but we wiggle our way with the other commandments.

  6. No kidding. I think the idea that “he did this because I didn’t make him happy enough” was one of the cruelest ideas to ever be put in my head. The idea made me think I could control someone else’s actions when I had no control at all. Because of that, I stayed and tried to reconcile for several years. I’ll never know if I got hpv because of one of his girlfriends’ before marriage or because of one of his girlfriend’s during the marriage. I’ll never know if leaving instead of reconciling could have saved me from getting an std. STDs are really common nowadays. According to a statistic, 80% of women will have some form of hpv by the time they are 50. The church always says that people wouldn’t have to worry about STDs if they waited until marriage, but then some will encourage infidelity victims to reconcile with a cheater. I think it’s time the church starting putting the victim’s health and well-being ahead of the institution of marriage. Clearly, there’s no possibility of protecting the marriage, if the cheater is trying to destroy it anyway.

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