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Extra Marital Affairs Part 2 Causes and Reasons

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In a recent survey published in January 2020 by extra marital affairs dating app (Yes! That’s a thing), approximately eight lakh married Indians are cheating on their spouses (India Today, 2020). In the article last week, we looked at the psychological theories and studies attempting to explain the reason behind why people cheat.

Today’s article is going to discuss about possible causes and reasons behind people having extra marital affairs.

The Reason Behind Extra Marital Affairs

  • Physical/sexual dissatisfaction within one’s married relationship- This is one of the most commonly cited reasons across studies, as an explanation for entering an extra-marital affair. Sexual dissatisfaction is one’s primary relationship is often viewed as the fuelling factor for infidelity.
  • Emotional dissatisfaction within one’s married relationship- Not being emotionally happy in one’s primary relationship, is another important indicator for having an affair. Feeling emotionally disconnected, or a feeling that your partner doesn’t understand you, are crucial aspects in a relationship. Recent studies point out that emotional affairs are on the rise more steadily in comparison to physical affairs. In fact, women find it more difficult to adjust to their spouses having had emotional affairs as compared to physical intimacy with other women.
  • Lack of an intellectual connects- The millennial spouse is looking for someone to talk to, and not just about romantic, mushy stuff but is also seeking intellectual stimulation. If partners are unable to acknowledge and indulge in intellectually stimulating conversations with each other, even that can be a deal-breaker.
  • Early Marriage- Being married relatively younger, like in the early 20s, is also seen as a risk factor for marital infidelity. Cases of extra-marital affairs rise in such relationships, particularly around the mid-30s or so, when the family responsibilities increase and boredom about the daily routine is likely to set in.
  • Reconnecting with an ex- With social media being omnipresent in our lives, it’s become fairly easier to find out what someone who we knew some years back, is doing now. And increasingly, people are using social media platforms to connect with old flames and crushes. The chances of having an affair with an ex, therefore, increase steadily.
  • Parenthood- The first few years of becoming a new parent can be particularly stressful for millennial parents. With no additional family at home, both parents working, increasing expenses, etc., raising a child is not really a cakewalk. Parenthood changes the dynamics between a husband and wife, and priorities change. Not finding time for each other or being always stressed out are seen as the first signs of moving apart both physically and emotionally.

You May Also Read: Extra-Marital Affairs Part 1 – The Psychology behind Why People Cheat in a Relationship?

As mentioned previously, there cannot be one reason which can explain this complex aspect of human behaviour. But most research indicates that people who do cheat, also report that cheating is wrong. So, whatever the reason may be, as a psychologist I would say that it can all be worked out.

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