Why do people have affairs?
You may not have been perfect, but you don’t think you deserved to be cheated on. There were times in the marriage you wanted to give up too. Marriage is not always a bed of roses and it is certainly nothing like the movies after the first few short years. So then you naturally ask yourself.
Why did my spouse cheat on me? Did I deserve it?
This is complicated. I personally believe no one cheats for only one reason, but generally speaking it appears there is some foundation of reasoning why a wayward spouse decides to stray away from his/her husband or wife, core reasons to cheat if you will.
I also believe most spouses do not ever intend on hurting their spouse, even when things get rotten in the relationship. Not many actually plan to have affairs and everyone hits rough patches during the marriage, but cheating is a choice and it is a result of mismanagement of their emotions.
Please note these are my personally observations of why people have affairs, many professional marriage counselors or psychologists have created their own lists from hundreds or even thousands of counseling sessions. Furthermore, these reasons are for reasonable people, not sociopaths who enter marriage with bad intentions from the start.
5 Reasons People Cheat On Their Spouses
1. “I can’t handle marriage.”
In essence what they are saying here is I want my freedom. I do not like to deal with being held accountable by their spouse to do the things they do not want to do like clean, save money, pay bills, go to church, etc. The bottom line is they have difficulty sharing. Some new person comes along and provides them that escape from reality where the focus is fun and romance not surviving and coexisting.
2. “I’m tired of fighting.”
This one hits home with me personally. You try to be loyal, but after a while you cannot handle your spouse’s constant bickering and complaining. You start to wonder what it would be like with someone who just accepts you for who you are.
ATTENTION: this is still an excuse to cheat, the complaining happened for a reason and the cheating spouse didn’t develop any coping strategies to deal with the more outspoken spouse.
3. “I haven’t had enough relationships.”
Or as I like to think about it, “I haven’t gotten it all out of my system.” The “it” is experiencing many different people. Some experts say the feeling of the need to experience more relationships starts during adolescence. They needed more attention or love, affirmation that they were attractive and desired. ATTENTION: I believe almost ever cheater suffers from this reasoning. Many people, both men and women, are attention and sex craved.
4. “I’m tired of being a victim.”
Perhaps they caught their spouse cheating on them or have suspected infidelity, either way they have grown tired of inappropriate behavior. Deep inside they just want to have a normal marriage and to be treated fairly, but their inability to stop the inappropriate behavior has pushed them to the boiling point of no return and they do not know what else to do. In their minds cheating will get their attention. ATTENTION: I have some difficulty believing this all that fall victim to this reason do it solely to get revenge or their spouse’s attention. They may be lacking love and attention.
5. “I want to feel like I still got it.”
Most people want to feel sexy, attractive and hope others pursue them. Perhaps this is also a sense of security that they will never be alone since they would always have a potential suitor that seeks them out. This stems from a personal neediness that if not managed and dealt with early on the marriage could spin out of control later. ATTENTION: my belief is that someone that is so craved for attention from the opposite sex probably truly cares for their spouse, but is susceptible to cheating on a regular basis. It is hot and invigorating to meet someone new over and over. The marriage is a safe haven for them. They enjoy living two lives.
Again there are many reasons people have affairs and I personally believe most cheaters experience a combination of the above list. Each person that strays from their marriage makes a choice. I did. They decide to have affairs. I never intended on hurting my first wife, I stuck with it for a long time, but I wish I had sought professional advice how to deal with my outspoken wife and how to better deal with the challenges of marriage. Despite looking back realizing I was not ready for such a commitment at that age I could have made a better effort.
It is NOT your fault your spouse cheated, but once you discover you have been cheated on it can be very scary. You don’t know who to talk to or where to even begin to look for help. You never thought you would have to learn how to deal with infidelity in your marriage. You never thought you would have to read an article on why people have affairs.