If roughly one in four men and one in five women have an affair at some time In their life, could your spouse be one of them?
When a person is unable to let go of that feeling of attraction towards someone not their spouse, they may risk everything--even their marriage--to give into their feelings. Sadly, extra-marital relationships are the number one cause of divorce.
The roots of these relationships are difficult to pin down and are usually many, not one even if you are in a happy, stable marriage, you or your partner could find yourself tempted to have an affair simply for the excitement, novelty, and break from routine. A variety of motives, both internal and social, spur people to get into such relationships. Men and women both have high expectations of marriage--that their partner will be their soul mate, that love will be effortless, that their sex life will be dynamic and exciting. When these expectations are not fulfilled, men and women often look to someone else for fulfillment rather than examining their own expectations.
If you and your partner take each other for granted and treat one another like housemates instead of lovers, the stage is set for one of you to have an affair. This is this single greatest cause of affairs. When relationships are struggling, both men and women look elsewhere to get their emotional needs met and easily find themselves in the arms of someone "who appreciates them".
Public acceptance of relationships outside your marriage has transformed dramatically over the past few decades. There continues to be strong social and moral condemnation of infidelity, but the consequences of it are not as great as in the past. Nowadays, infidelity isn't shadowed by the brand of social stigma, or losing one's job as a result. Cheating spouses are comforted by the ease of divorce that would allow them to leave their spouse for their lover. As culture removes more and more of the consequences of infidelity, more spouses will cheat. It's as simple as that.
When marriages end in divorce as a result of infidelity, men are three times more likely to be the adulterous partner. However, women cheat on their spouses as well. This number has risen considerably from a previous survey ten years earlier, and experts expect that the number will continue to climb until women have just as many illicit relationships as men.
Temptation is everywhere, but as men and women spend more time with each other away from their partners, giving into that temptation becomes easier and easier. When a man or a woman spends a lot of time with a member of the opposite sex--whether friend, co-worker, or teammate--they develop a platonic friendship that can become much, much more. Familiarity, emotional intimacy, and common professional or sporting goals create a powerful bond that may feel more compelling than the marital relationship.
Many people seek marriage advice only after they've discovered that their partner was in the middle of such an unacceptable relationship. In many cases, the cheating spouse has already moved out and is living with their lover. Infidelity can destroy your marriage, but it doesn't have to. You can still save your marriage.