But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
-Romans 5:8, NLT
Am I getting a good deal in this marriage?
This sort of thinking is a hallmark of a cheater, IMO. It leads to all sorts of “justifying” and nefarious behavior.
The score keeping mindset is indicative of a person who only values another as a means to an ends. That ends might be prestige, money, sexual gratification, or something else.
It is not indicative of true love.
The “deal-analyzing” mentality forever treats the spouse as nothing more than a means to some goal as opposed to a person of great value. It is dehumanizing.
And I bet many faithful spouses who read this know how that feels.
It is so foreign to faithful spouse thinking. You do things for the spouse not in order to get your “fair share” but in order to love the other…because you actually do!
The “reward” is in serving the one you love well.
I think this is one of the hardest things to comprehend for us as faithful spouses. Our cheaters do not think the same way we do. It is even–likely–questionable whether they ever really loved us as opposed to just what we gave them.
So, the key for starting over after a cheater is finding another person who actually loves you as a person.
You–and you alone–are enough for them. They delight in bringing you delight because they actually love you and care about you. These are the sort of people who are not in the relationship to use you but want you and see you as the prize.