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It’s an idiom that you’ve heard, but a new study performed by University of Denver graduate student, Kayla Knopp, demonstrates that it holds true.

Cheaters 3.5x More Likely to Cheat During Next Relationship

Knopp’s study consisted of a sample size of 484 adults between the ages of 18 and 35. The study found that individuals who cheated in a previous relationship were 3.5x more likely to cheat in their next relationship.


A similar trend found that victims of cheating were 3x as likely to be cheated on again in their following relationship. Since the study did not include same-sex oriented individuals and didn’t specify a reasoning or cause of the infidelity, it shouldn’t be viewed as an absolute; however, it does suggest that cheating or being cheated on may be predictable.

Past Relationships May Predict Future Ones

Another alarming trend which was highlighted in this study was ongoing use of aggression in relationships, both those that are prone to use aggression of verbal or physical nature and those whom are repeatedly victimized by such behaviors. The findings were that those who have a history with abusive relationships are more likely to continue finding relationships that exhibit these qualities and characteristics.

This study highlights something that is simple and yet invaluable; which is that people as a whole, tend to fall into relationships that mirror previous ones. Cheaters are likely to cheat again and aggressive individuals often remain aggressive.

The key in many cases is to be cautious while also openly communicating with your partner. By doing so, you can see if a potential spouse draws any red flags and address these concerns early on.

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