People cheat for many different reasons. It is often thought that people mainly cheat because their sex life is not satisfactory. But research has shown that even people with a very satisfying sex life also cheat.
Why and how often people cheat
The numbers vary enormously. Our own, completely unrepresentative survey among the readers of this blog shows that no less than 62% have ever cheated [Dutch]. Incidentally, this comes close to figures from other research, which show that the chance that you will experience adultery during a steady relationship is somewhere between 40% and 76%. Durex’s annual sex survey shows that as many as 31 percent of Dutch people cheat. Worldwide (according to Durex) that is 22 percent.
People cheat for very different reasons. Some people cheat out of dissatisfaction with their relationship, out of revenge, or because it’s exciting. People who cheat get several benefits from this.
Satisfied and yet cheating?
In research published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers describe that of newlywed couples, those most satisfied with their sex lives were most likely to cheat.
Cheating, according to many sexologists, is not always about sex, or its quality. For example, some people cheat to develop or discover themselves. Or because they are afraid of dying without truly having ‘lived’.
But also people with a high libido, who are sensation seekers, are often satisfied with their sex life, but they also like to experiment. These are traits that are also associated with cheating.
Ugly people often cheat
The researchers of the study among newlyweds looked at all photos of respondents and rated them for attractiveness. Then they looked at their cheating behavior. What turned out? The women considered less attractive by the researchers were more likely to cheat. That did not apply to men. But men often cheated when they thought their wife was less attractive. Women did not do that.