Over fifty percent of marriages end in divorce and a large number of these splits are due to cheating spouses. It used to be the dreaded seven-year itch where a spouse would become bored and start looking for excitement outside the marriage, but now recent evidence shows this boredom is occurring even sooner. It has now become the dreaded three-year itch. Couples are becoming bored shortly after the nuptials and this can lead to an affair.

There are many reasons why spouses decide to cheat. Some of these include boredom, lack of affection, lack of passion, escapism, and to validate manhood or womanhood. While both sexes cheat, it might be surprising to discover that men and women often cheat for completely different reasons.

Men tend to cheat because they crave variety. They become bored quickly, and often it is the thrill of the chase for men. They like the idea of conquering someone new. Men often make the claim that sex and love are two different things. They have the ability to have sex with no emotional attachment, so they rationalize that it is ok to have sex with someone else as long as they do not love them. Men tend to have a higher sex drive than women, so wives, especially if children are involved, often cannot keep up with the husbands higher need for sex.

Women often cheat for emotional reasons. They often lack affection from their partner so they seek this affection from another source. Furthermore, women might cheat as a form of escapism. Often a busy life of working, cooking, tending to the children and the husbands needs, leaves them feeling overwhelmed, and an affair is just for them. The opportunity to escape their home life and engage in a relationship where they are the priority is often too good to pass up.

However, these gender roles are not hard and fast rules for cheating spouses. There are men who cheat for emotional intimacy and women who do if for excitement and sex.

Signs of a cheating spouse include working longer hours, less intimacy, secretive phone calls, dressing nicer and less communication.

Affairs have consequences. Divorce, lack of trust, blame, and arguing are often consequences of an unfaithful partner. Affairs can be avoided by remaining attentive to the relationship. Making sure to spend time with each other and making time for sex.

Cheating spouses can ruin a marriage, and if this occurs in a relationship, it is important to seek out counseling and try to extend forgiveness to the partner.

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