Why do we cheat? Why do some people have a harder time with monogamy then others? Who cheats more, men or women? Hopefully these questions can all be answered in this blog.
As people, we all have a natural desire for self-gratification. Some may call it the Id, others the flesh. Like mind blowing sex, delicious food, partying and so on. As people, we also have a natural desire for intimacy and to feel loved by someone else, and to share the same dreams and their lives together. Unfortunately, these two needs cannot coexist with one another in a successful relationship. These two needs can often be contradictory. To achieve such intimacy and love, you have to sacrifice your own self-gratification at times. And to achieve self-gratification, you often have to sacrifice some love and intimacy. Doing something you really don’t want to do, but your partner wants to do it. For example: going to a movie you don’t want to see. Spending time with family or friends you don’t like. Going out to dinner, when all you want to do is stay at home.
If a person values self-gratification more than the intimacy they gain from a relationship, then they will stop sacrificing for the relationship and are likely to end up cheating. If a person values the intimacy they gain from a relationship more than self-gratification, then they will willingly sacrifice some of their self-gratification to remain faithful.
Infidelity can wreak havoc on a relationship, it is the leading cause for marital divorce and pre-marital break-ups; it can trigger domestic violence; and it is a strong predictor of poor mental health, including depression and anxiety. Given that infidelity produces a constellation of adverse personal and relational consequences, yet people are known to cheat, the question becomes: why? Why risk it? What are the motivations that lead to infidelity?
There are numerous reason why people risk it all. Anger and revenge, falling out of love, commitment issues, the microwave door was left open, you only wash one garment in the washing machine…etc. The lack of maturity plays a major role in infidelity. Age has nothing to do with maturity. People in their fifties cheat the same as people in their twenties and thirties do. Immaturity separate the boys and girls from the men and women.
So who cheats more? They say men cheat more but women are better at it. I do not know if this is true or not. However I do understand, it would make sense that women are better at hiding their affairs. Traditionally women have faced harsher punishment for cheating. The implications of cheating can be devastating on them. The loss of their financial support, and risking the loss of their children could be too overwhelming. One out of three women experiences at some point, physical violence by their partner, which is often triggered by infidelity.
Institute for Family Studies (General Social Survey 2010-2016). Shows that among ever-married adults ages 18 to 29, women are slightly more likely than men to be guilty of infidelity (11% vs. 10%). But this gap quickly reverses among those ages 30 to 34 and grows wider in older age groups. Infidelity for both men and women increases during the middle ages.
Why do men cheat? Well, men are more prone to casual and opportunistic cheating, which plays a big part in why they get caught. Infidelity, for many men, is evidence of recklessness. For women, however, cheating may be evidence of a more thought-out plan to address perceived needs. The potential costs of being sexually reckless is otherwise too high. Unfortunately cheating in a relationship is within all of us, however all of us don’t cheat in our relationships.
You felt secure in your wickedness no one sees me, you said. But your wisdom and knowledge have led you astray, and you said, I am the only one, and there is other.
References; Psychology Today, Healthline, Worried Lovers, Bible.