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Why Do Men Cheat Instead of Divorce?

Why Do Men Cheat Instead of Divorce?

"Women are much better at leaving relationships," my psychologist friend said the other night. Men, she said, stick around unhappy.

Why is that? I asked. Because they find sex on the side instead? In fact, I have never heard of a guy leaving a marriage by his choice because he was unhappy, unfulfilled, or felt ignored. This is purely anecdotal and based on my gross consumption of mass media, rather than insight into divorce, but I think I'm onto something.

Yesterday the Daily Mail cited reasons women leave relationships: lack of emotional support, a relationship without direction, no longer feeling attracted to a partner, or a partner who's less ambitious or outgoing outrank sex. Only two percent of women put sex first, while men rate sex as vital to a healthy relationship.

Could it be that sex is easier to replace than, say, emotional intimacy? And that's why men cheat instead of leave?

Image Source: Thinkstock
Join The Conversation
danakscully64 danakscully64 6 years
This year in my family, we had a female and male do this. My sister's husband had been cheating through their whole marriage (we all knew he was a douche) and actually left her, 9 months pregnant. He signed up for eHarmony the next day and found a new gf (who he lied to and said my sister cheated on him). Then my sister in law started having an affair around Christmas, my brother found out about 5 months later. I don't get either of these situations: If you don't want to be married, either don't get married in the first place (sister's situation) or file for divorce and leave (brother's situation). There would have been blood if one of my siblings had been infected with an STD from their cheating spouses. Both are now getting a divorce, thank goodness.
shannon_xo shannon_xo 6 years
ah..also, divorce is expensive. Cheating is cheap.
stephley stephley 6 years
I've never met anyone who while having an affair, called it an affair. I'm sure there are married people who actively just look for other sex partners, but many people who have affairs aren't just looking to get laid. If you're talking about an actual marital relationship threatening affair, you're talking about a relationship that runs deeper than a one night stand.
lickety-split lickety-split 6 years
wait, "affairs aren't all about sex"??? thats news to me, lol. please explain. because if you're just lookin for a bff, why would you call it an affair?
Miss-Infamous Miss-Infamous 6 years
LOL@ some of these responses. Wow!
starbucks2 starbucks2 6 years
Why, a little bitter, everyone? ;) I would like to believe this isn't the case for every man...although in my biased, anecdotal experience, it's kinda true. Sad.
lickety-split lickety-split 6 years
They would rather not "give" half their material possessions away.
GTCB GTCB 6 years
Look ladies - I'll give you a little insight into how men like this think. It's really very simple - men like comfort zones. They like it when things are simple, predictable and they don't have to work too hard at something difficult (like a divorce). It's much easier to get some on the side and stay in a rotten marriage than it is to take all the steps that divorce requires.
amber512 amber512 6 years
Simple answer: because they are lazy. It takes way less effort to stick around than to leave.
stephley stephley 6 years
“I have never heard of a guy leaving a marriage by his choice because he was unhappy, unfulfilled, or felt ignored” Men do it all the time – they just don’t get divorced. They find a woman who will act as a band-aid and a buffer to their hurt feelings while they avoid the emotional and real costs of ending their unsatisfying marriage. Sex is easier than facing emotional controversy & pain and affairs aren’t all about sex.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 6 years
Sex is definitely easier to replace. You can get it pretty much anywhere, whereas real intimacy with someone takes the confluence of a bunch of different factors, not the least of which is putting work into it.
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