The perception of cheaters and the other women


Faith Wallace

Cheating is prosecutable in 21 states and despite 84% of citizens agreeing that cheating is wrong according to YaleGlobal Online Archives, it still remains one of the major causes for divorce.

Faith Wallace, Style and Culture Writer

Culturally, there is an obsession with the behind the scene lives of celebrities and cheating scandals aren’t anything new. Our perception is if celebrities can’t get through marriage, then nobody can. 

Our expectation of women being responsible is put on a magnified level for celebrities.

For example, take Tristan Thompson whose first cheating scandal was with Jordan Craig in 2016 during her pregnancy. “My pregnancy would now become one of the most popular gossip headlines due to the woman Tristan was now publicly dating during my pregnancy,” Craig said from Radar Online. 

The person he was cheating with was Khloe Kardashian. Craig was labeled by the media as a “baby mama” to Thompson, who went on to pursue a relationship with Kardashian. 

Kardashian and Thompson dated until 2018 when Kardashian was about to give birth to her first child with Thompson. Thompson was then accused of having affairs with multiple women days before Kardashian’s delivery, and the two eventually split when Thompson had an affair with Kardashian’s sister, Kylie Jenners’, best friend. 

When Thompson returned to the NBA, there was discouragement from fans on the court. He was benched for his cheating notoriety for the first game, which was uncommon due to the infamous cheating culture in professional sports. Due to this culture, some were surprised that Kardashian didn’t expect affairs. 

Others were surprised that someone with ideal looks can be cheated on, which still reduces Kardashian to the ‘pretty girl’ stereotype instead of offering sympathy for her situation. 

She discussed the relationship in an interview with Variety. “If your significant other is doing something wrong, for the women to always be blamed, that’s always been really hurtful for me,” Kardashian said.

The blame usually falls on the woman in the relationship. If a couple is unhappy, the assumption is that it’s the woman’s fault. 

Meanwhile, Thompson was gaining fame for being unfaithful. 

More recently, Ned Fulmer from Try Guys chose the opposite route. Instead of being the bad guy, he positioned himself as the family guy. His love of his wife was his private and public persona. Ned’s brand possessed the nuclear family charm in a modern setting. 

Fulmer’s decision to cheat on his wife Ariel Fulmer, whom he publicly adored, was the death of his brand and career. 

The first post regarding his cheating was on Reddit. Someone claimed that they saw Fulmer in relation with a girl. People speculated that it was Alexandria Herring, who had a 10-year relationship with her fiance and was Fulmer’s employee at Try Guys. 

When a cheating scandal occurs, it is often a betrayal of what people perceive as the identity of the celebrity. The outcry was not for Fulmer’s wife but for the perception of his identity and their marriage. 

The overexposure of a celebrity’s personal life impacts how detrimental the cheating is perceived by the public. The Try Guys create wholesome videos and don’t share much about their personal life. The Kardashians overexpose their life and everything in it. The more private a celebrity is about their life, the bigger the spotlight gets put on them. 

People don’t feel real unless you’ve met them, which affects the media’s perception of cheating. The cheater gets to go on with life, leaving both women behind. 

The faithful woman ends up humiliated in front of family, friends and the internet by the virtue of someone they love. The other women are harassed by strangers who question the values of someone they don’t know. They have one thing in common–unless they are well established, their careers are unable to withstand the scandals. 

Those who face the brunt of cheating are the women who are left to pick up the pieces and put them back together again.