This guest article from PsychCentral was written by Robert Weiss, LCSW, CSAT-S
The issue of cheating is one of the most difficult problems a couple will ever encounter. A lot of blame and self worth is wrapped up in the issue of cheating. In fact it is incredibly important to understand the differences in both how men and women handle cheating and the reasons why they teeter off from the man or woman that they love.
Why Men Cheat
1) He resents not getting more love, adoration, appreciation, time, focus etc. from his spouse (who is likely trying to balance her own priorities like kids and work). Often not fully aware of his emotional needs, he gets into the affair or liaison to temporarily validate and make himself feel better without resolving the underlying issues in his relationship.
2) He wants to leave his current relationship, but first wants another one on the sidelines to fill that void.
3) He has an intimacy or sexual addiction problem that keeps him distant from those close to him while at the same time he uses sex and romance to fill his own emotional emptiness.
4) He is insecure about his age (young or old), physical image, his income, etc. He uses the affair or hook-up in an attempt to prove his value to himself.
5) He feels uninterested, overworked or otherwise entitled to get something ’special’ just for himself and is excited by the “mystery” and “intensity” of living a secret sexual/romantic life. His thinking is, ”As long as no one finds out, I’m not hurting anybody.”
Why Women Cheat
1) She cheats for the emotional validation. This tends to happen when she feels or actually is unappreciated, unattended to and undervalued by her mate, while at the same time is getting attention from someone else (usually at the workplace or socially).
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