Cheating in a marriage has traditionally been a bad title held by men, but of late, women seemed to have come fast on mens tracks with an appetite to do justice to the many centuries of men cheating on them. My wife and I had this discussion the other week and subsequently saw a program on TV that was trying to tackle the topic, WHY DO MEN CHEAT? and with the changing times and new dynamics I was compelled to research and try to bring some clarity on the reasons why both men and women cheat when they have committed to a Married Life. Both are responsible and accountable for their actions.
There are many reasons why some married people cheat. Upwards of 40% of married couples are impacted by infidelity, and despite the high percentage, most people — even those who stray — will say that cheating is wrong. Risk factors such as personality disorders and childhood issues, as well as opportunities such as social media and poor boundaries, can increase the chance that one of these reasons will actually lead to some type of affair.
Men and Women who are married would definitely cheat for different reasons and I would like to look at a issues that affect both sides. Hopefully these insights will help Married Couples to Keep a Guard on their marriages and ensure that they pay attention to their partners because you genuinely love them and only want the best for them and for the Marriage.
Why Do Some Men & Women Cheat on their Spouses?
Just to cut straight to the chase , immaturity is one of the leading “real reasons” men and women cheat. While as a man I have heard some creative reasoning from cheaters over the years, those tend to be justifications masked mostly in denial. When someone has little background in long-term relationships, their understanding of the consequences behind behaviors such as cheating might be limited. With a lack of maturity in the realm of adult-relationships, someone might not be able to understand the scope of their actions in relation to their partner, often believing there might be room for fluidity in their responsibility to be faithful.
It is also clear and noted that resentment is one of the primary emotional triggers of cheating. Specifically, the feelings of being neglected, wherein their infidelity becomes a way to recapture their partner’s attention or redirect getting attention from someone else. I personally felt neglected when my first son was born, and my wife seemed to be focusing more on my son than on me, but fortunately I had many other things and troubles to focus on at the time so I never let my mind wander in that direction of cheating but rather tried to help as much as I can with taking care of our new son. Of course, if someone is feeling neglected — it’s their responsibility to communicate that in the marriage relationship.
It is also important to note that in many cases, cheating has very little to do with the person being cheated on and more to do with personal battles the guilty party may be dealing with. Not every case of infidelity is caused by a failing marriage, or “troubled people” . Sometimes, it’s quite simply the “expressions of people seeking something.” and not adequately expressing that to their partners for various reasons. Validation vulnerability” is one of the key reasons why married men cheat. In a bid to satisfy the “hunger for attention,” men can look outside of their relationship and find themselves engaging in workplace affairs, or affairs with women that give them more attention where finding the admiration and appreciation they seek might be more readily available to them.
The feelings of stifled or limited self-expression a person may feel within their own relationship is another factor that caused men to cheat. When this happens, the man in question may feel they need to look outside of their existing partnership for a connection that allows them to express themselves in whatever way they don’t feel they’re able to with their partner. Self-expression is key when it comes to communication in a relationship. Toxic Masculinity is real and creating space where you can nurture SQ (Social Intelligence)and EQ (Emotional Intelligence) in your connection will only strengthen it. An inflated need to self-gratify is another major reason for cheating. When your main concern is me, me, me, you tend to lose sight of the bigger picture, more specifically, the value in long term goals. If you have a spouse and children, your focus must change from me to them. As it relates to disappointment, some partners find themselves unable to cope with a lack of excitement or the flaws of their long-term relationships, and so they engage in an affair as an alternative to dealing with the confrontation of communicating their disappointment to their partner.
At its core, cheating is more of a symptom than a cause of something, specifically, a symptom of an inability to connect with their partner, and not something purely rooted in lust. The result of this disconnection being even the simplest of connected moments that one partner might experience with someone else, in which they may see this new person or connection as a source of replenishment for what they feel is missing at home. From a Spiritual level we are not able to meet all of our needs on our own, in spite of our desire for independence, relationships become the logical source for those emotional needs which we need help satisfying. The core reason for cheating is as simple as someone feeling their emotional needs aren’t being met in their relationship.
We can come up with over 1004 reasons why a Man or a Woman has cheated, but our guide and yardstick for infidelity must come from the word of God and we should be clear on what God says about it before we come up with ëxcuses”for cheating. The world we live in now makes it seem like it is normal to cheat but in real terms God has set the standard and the consequences are real.
Infidelity or adultery is one of the most frequently and severely condemned sins in the Bible. Adultery is mentioned 52 times, including in the Ten Commandments, all four Gospels, and ten other books of the Bible. Only the sins of idolatry, self-righteousness and murder are mentioned more often. In the Old Testament, adultery was understood as sexual relations between a married (or betrothed) woman and man other than her husband. It was therefore a sin against the husband. In the New Testament, Jesus extended the definition of adultery to include sexual relations between a married man and a woman other than his wife. Jesus said, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her, and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery” (Mark 10:11-12). People often wonder if an exception is allowed in cases where the spouse cannot or will not have sex, or if the couple is separated, or for other reasons. However, the Bible doesn’t mention any possible exceptions. Therefore, as long as a couple is legally married, sex with anyone else is considered adultery. Period.
It’s important to remember that marital infidelity, like all sins, can be forgiven. The adulterer or adulteress is not beyond the reach of God’s grace. As the sinner repents and God forgives, the betrayed partner is also obliged to forgive. Jesus said that if we don’t forgive the sins of others, our own sins will not be forgiven (Matthew 6:15. While forgiving and forgetting is not instinctive or easy, God’s grace is always sufficient.
Even though God will forgive adultery, the damage it causes can’t be undone. While marriages can last after a partner has been unfaithful, the impact the infidelity had on the relationship continues to last. Be mindful of your actions with others outside of your marriage. They do have consequences.
Wilbert Frank Chaniwa – Talking Marriage Today