Marital Infidelity is a serious issue faced by many marriages, however, it is hard to statistically place a number on it as most people will not admit to cheating on their spouse. Whether you call it cheating, having an affair, or infidelity; it is an act that betrays the trust of a spouse.
Marital infidelity can be emotional or physical. Emotional affairs are deeply embedded in intimacy with someone besides the spouse but lack the physical aspect of sex. Although people tend to minimize emotional affairs, it is just as detrimental to a marriage and can easily lead to physical intimacy.
Reasons that may contribute to infidelity, I say contribute because no one is responsible for your cheating except YOU. There is a tendency to place blame on the other spouse as though they caused YOU to cheat. They may have done things that caused emotional disconnect but, they cannot be blamed for your decision to break your marital vows.
It is common to justify our actions by pointing the finger at other people but this is one area in life, the cheater has to take full responsibility for their action. There are marriages where partners are not open with each other about their needs and while there may be things going on that are detrimental the other partner may be clueless.
There are also situations where one partner has expressed discontent, at the neglect of the other partner and their concerns were not taken seriously. This can lead to frustration in seeking attention outside of the marriage. Men and women differ in their pursuit of extramarital affairs. Women tend to want intimacy, while men tend to seek attention and respect.
Here are a few factors that contribute to marital infidelity, but again they are not causes.
Lack of communication
When a couple fails to communicate about their day to day life, it is easy to miss when something bad is going on. There needs to be ongoing open communication on needs and wants.
When couples are emotionally and/or physically disengaged
In a society where we are so distracted by social media, people have to compete with cellphones for the attention of their spouses. So it is easy to become emotionally distant and disinterested in the person sitting by you and seek the thrill of the unknown outside of the home.
Today, people get married for the gram. They work so hard to outdo each other not recognizing the financial realities of marriage. Once married, your expenses can double and quadruple easily. Not foreseeing this possibility causes people to spend so much on their weddings and reap the result of those years into the marriage. This causes unnecessary strain as couples work so hard to stay afloat.
Lack of respect
When people don’t feel respected or appreciated, they tend to look outside their relationship for someone who will love them for who they are. Respect is so important to especially men, so the lack thereof damages their ego.
Domestic violence is one of the biggest detriments to marriage. It destroys the dignity of the victim, especially when the offender justifies his or her behavior and has no intent to change their behavior. That can easily lead someone to get closer to one who will love and care for them.
Being mindful of these risk factors can help couples to fall into the infidelity trap, but just like anything else, there is no perfect way to safe-proof your marriage unless you are committed entirely to your spouse in spite of the good, the bad, or the ugly.