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Why We Cheat

By October 14, 2012 November 5th, 2016 No Comments

The Associated Press, Journal of Marital and Family Therapy released the following results from a 2012 study conducted around the United States.

 Percent of men who admit to committing infidelity in any relationship they’ve had
57 %
 Percentage of women who admit to committing infidelity in any relationship they’ve had
54 %
 Percentage of marriages that last after an affair has been admitted to or discovered
31 %
 Percentage of men who say they would have an affair if they knew they would never get caught
74 %
 Percentage of women who say they would have an affair if they knew they would never get caught
68 %


The figures are shocking, and considering monogamy is society’s most dominantly expressed marital value, it appears hypocrisy is not far behind. People will admit to cheating even less often than they admit to masturbating. They’d rather jump on the bandwagon and preach about how immoral it is. Why? Because they’d rather not be judged and shamed by society; nor do they have any desire to see their partner succumb to complete insecurity as society tells us is appropriate.

Based on these statistics, you’re probably someone who’s cheated. Maybe you learned from it, grew from it and are not ashamed to admit it. Maybe you’re too scared, ashamed or in denial to fess-up. Irrespective, you are not alone. I’ve been there. The experience positively changed my life and hurt no one. My best friend was a product of both his parents cheating together (they later married and lived a long happy life together), and everywhere I go, I meet people who have cheated, been cheated on or contemplate cheating.

If you are of the 29% who have never considered turning to cheating for answers or solutions, don’t be so quick to judge ‘lest ye be judged’ (Gospel according to St Luke 6.3738).

So everyone put down your sharp stares and stabbing words. We are not better than one another. We are all human. We all fall victim to our physical and emotional desires.

Now, every time the subject of cheating is brought up, the topic is inevitably steered towards labeling the members of the couple as the ‘victim’ and the ‘perpetrator’. All sympathy and understanding goes to the poor, helpless, hurt victim while the ‘perpetrator’ is badgered for their wrong-doing. I’m not saying that being a serial cheater who neglects their wife and kids is honorable, what I’m saying is that the majority of those who cheat are unmarried people, going through unfulfilling relationships and trying to figure out what they want. They mean no ill-harm and are only in search of answers.
According to internationally acclaimed psychiatrist and author Gordon Livingston, the most common element of dissatisfaction with our lives ‘is the belief that we have, in our youth, made the wrong choice of partner’. Thus it makes sense that the unmarried and unsatisfied often wonder if there’s a better fit for them elsewhere.

Questioning if your current partner is someone you can find happiness with or not is nothing to be ashamed of. No one is expected to always have the answers, certainly not when it comes to relationships.

People always ask “why don’t you just leave the relationship?” The simple answer is People are Afraid; afraid to stay, afraid to leave, afraid to make a decision without being sure.

They don’t teach us about emotions and relationships at school! And given the number of dysfunctional families out there, I doubt parents are doing a very good job at teaching their kids how to make important relationship decisions.

When a young woman is in an unhappy relationship that’s not encouraging her development and success, should she leave or stay-put in what’s familiar to her? The logical answer is ‘Go… Move on!” But how often is that answer obvious and clear to that emotional girl who’s terrified of change and the unknown? Not very. Many men and women from the ages of 16-40 turn to cheating as a way to ease into a new life without their partner. It’s a means of testing the waters before committing to the jump in.  It’s a means of solidifying to themselves whether they should leave, or stay and commit for the long-haul.

When we invest our time and emotions in a relationship with hopes for a particular return that isn’t received, we look outside for answers as to ‘should I pull out of this investment or not?’

You wouldn’t sell your house or quit your job without at least being sure that there are other suitable options out there. That would be called careless and irresponsible.

So what is it that cheaters are condemned for? For being in search of answers? For pursuing a potentially happier future? For putting themselves first? For not wanting to be shamed by society? For not wanting their partner to find out and get hurt?

Sure, most of those who cheat lie about it to their partners, but, let’s be real – we All lie. We lie about what we had for breakfast, whether you look fat or not, how many people we’ve slept with, whether or not we washed out hands etc. It’s not to hurt anyone. It’s to escape the negative judgment of Mr & Ms ‘I Know Better’. They’re called ‘white lies’ – defined by the American Heritage Dictionary as ‘an often trivial, diplomatic or well-intentioned untruth’.

The majority of those who lie about cheating aren’t doing it to be conniving, nor are they cheating in attempt to hurt their partner’s egos or sense of self-worth. They lie to avoid judgment and hurt feelings, and they find themselves cheating in search for answers.

If cheating’s been on your mind, this book will not only help you see through the haze of emotion and analyze your situation logically, but it will also hold your hand as you go through your unconventional journey to a more fulfilling and satisfying life.

Cheating: How to Do it Right- A Guide for Women

The Psychology Behind Why We Do It  (Excerpt)

‘We have been taught to succumb to extreme insecurity, the shattering of our pride and fragile egos when we are ‘victims’ to infidelity. We feel we have been done a grave injustice when, more often than not, one’s decision to cheat or seek physical or emotional gratification elsewhere has less to do with us and more to do with the ‘perpetrators’ curiosities, fears, and insecurities. Is it healthy for us to shame infidelity—the breach of the expectation of sexual exclusivity? Is it healthy for us to emotionally fall apart and lose all sense of self-esteem when a partner acts out of fear, insecurity, or prolonged discontent? Perhaps in an ideal world, our egos would not be so frail as to require exclusive sexual and physical possession of our partners. Perchance, infidelity is not always a symptom of immorality, but rather one of an unaddressed issue within the relationship. Perhaps the answer to the question of ‘should you stay once you’ve been cheated on?’ isn’t so obviously ‘no’…

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