Why do spouses cheat? New research holds some unexpected answers - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Why do spouses cheat? New research holds some unexpected answers

Aug 04, 2023 04:59 PM IST

A study finds the aftermath of infidelity divided along lines of gender. How far back did the couple’s problems go? The answer is a surprising one there too.

A study led by Olga Stavrova, associate professor of social psychology at Tilburg University in the Netherlands, surveyed 947 people in Germany, 609 of whom had cheated on their partner and 338 of whom had been cheated on.

 (Pixabay) PREMIUM
(Pixabay)

It analysed the state of each person’s relationship using detailed questionnaires that traced its evolution back over 12 years. (Findings were published in the journal Psychological Science in November.)

The first rather intriguing finding: Among the subjects surveyed by Stavrova and her team, the emotional aftermath for those who cheated appeared to be divided along lines of gender, with women reporting less guilt, and recovering better. The women, on average, even reported feeling better about themselves and their decision over time.

The reason for this, the study posits, is that “Women are more likely to mention relationship dissatisfaction as a reason for their affair. Potentially… the affair may be a wake-up call for their partners, leading to positive behavioral change.” On average, the study found, men reported a sharp decline in life satisfaction and self esteem after the event of infidelity.

In another interesting detail, it turned out that, among both the people who cheated and those who were cheated on, most indicators of relationship well-being had been declining for as much as seven years before the incidents of cheating began. The five indicators measured were relationship satisfaction, intimacy, admiration, dominance (how often a partner gets their way in a disagreement), and conflict (how often the partners were annoyed or angry with each other). Men who cheated, interestingly, reported lower relationship dissatisfaction levels than women who cheated on their partner.

Are you a cricket buff? Participate in the HT Cricket Quiz daily and stand a chance to win an iPhone 15 & Boat Smartwatch. Click here to participate now.

Catch your daily dose of Fashion, Health, Festivals, Travel, Relationship, Recipe and all the other Latest Lifestyle News on Hindustan Times Website and APPs.

Continue reading with HT Premium Subscription

Daily E Paper I Premium Articles I Brunch E Magazine I Daily Infographics
freemium
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Friday, April 12, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On