Women and Extra-Marital Affairs

While it used to be the case that the mention of the word “affair” brought to mind an image of a middle-aged man, we may now need to change this stereotype to that of a young woman – or any woman in fact. Because if research is to be believed – particularly that undertaken by David Atkins of the University of Washington, Center for the Study of Health and Risk Behaviors – women are just as likely as men to engage in extra-marital affairs. According to Atkins’ study, during the period 1991 to 2006 the number of cheating young wives rose by 20 percent. And it’s not only younger women who are straying from their partners; the same study found that in 2006, the infidelity rates for women over 60 were three times higher than they were in 1991 (5 percent compared with 15 percent).

The reasons women have affairs has changed little over the years. Feeling neglected is still one of the main reasons why a woman strays. Unlike men, women seldom have affairs purely for sex. Even when a woman does has an affair for sex, it’s usually because the affair allows her to act in a way she feels she couldn’t with her partner; for example, with a lover she may feel more able to explore her sexual fantasies or to lose her inhibitions.

And yet although the basic reasons for women being unfaithful are still likely to be the same as they were decades ago, technology is undoubtedly playing a role in the way affairs are being started and conducted; it may even be, in part, to blame for the increase in the number of women committing adultery, especially where “opportunistic” affairs are concerned. Where little opportunity existed before for many women to communicate outside their immediate social circle – or for some women their immediate family – technology has made it possible for them to connect with almost anyone they want to. Thanks to the internet, it’s easy to flirt with someone, there’s less danger associated with it, and some women can even convince themselves that what they’re doing isn’t an affair at all. unhappy couple However, if the intent is there, then some would argue that it can’t ever be harmless. Whether “cybersex” constitutes an affair may be a grey area, but for any woman convinced that she isn’t being unfaithful, this sort of interaction is a slippery slope and one that many women have found themselves sliding down with disastrous consequences.

Alcohol may not be the sole cause of a woman’s embarking on an affair, but it can play a big part. Many women often attribute some form of regretful behavior to excessive drinking. And even if the result of that behavior isn’t a full-blown affair – say, for example, she’s caught kissing a friend’s spouse – it can still cause its fair share of hurt and distress in a relationship.

Another reason why women may be more inclined to stray is the way in which we view sex nowadays. We’re a lot more open about sex than we used to be. There’s usually a least one women’s magazine on sale at the newsstands each month that’s publishing a sex survey. And when women read about what other women are doing in their sex lives (regardless of whether these accounts are actually true), they’re inclined to want to try new experiences. This is particularly true if a woman married young or has had few sexual partners other than her current one, as she may feel that she’s missing out on something.

How to Repair the Damage Done

If you’re trying to repair your relationship in the light of your infidelity, then you and your partner should refrain from acting on any knee-jerk reactions. While your partner, understandably, may want to banish you from the marital home, both of you should try to learn why the affair happened. This is especially true if you want to repair the relationship. And even if neither one of you wants to carry on, then it’s still worth finding out what caused the infidelity as it may prove useful in future relationships. Discussing the issue openly and honestly will help you to identify the reasons why you strayed and help you to resolve any conflict that exists in your relationship.

If you decide that the relationship is worth saving then you must cease all contact with your ex-lover. It’s also important that you pay attention to the small things; if you say you’re going to be somewhere at a certain time, then make sure you are.

Some couples become stronger as a result of an extra-marital affair. It forces them to face their problems and to deal with them. The sad irony, however, is that only an affair can force them to do this.

If you are interested in help getting over an affair, visit Healing From An Affair

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