Most people would agree that the sexes regard sexual liaisons differently, however, an emotional affair is non sexual, so is it mostly men or women who conduct emotional affairs? Absolute figures on this are hard to come by, especially as people who answer surveys on infidelity are notoriously unreliable in their answers! Statistics identify that according to the Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy, approximately 60 is the percentage of men who cheat and 50 percent of married women will, at some point in their marriage, have an extramarital affair. When you look at what percentage of men cheat after an emotional affair, research indicates a married man is less likely to have an emotional affair as men are more interested in the physical than the emotional element of infidelity, whereas a woman looks for an emotional connection. Of those having an affair, a staggering 57% of wives affairs were emotional affairs and the husband emotional affair element was 44%. So, while men tend to have more affairs than women, more women’s affairs tend to be of the emotional variety. What is interesting is, that those husbands and wives who were surveyed, freely admitted to the notion of infidelity existing without a physical element.

Infidelity statistics are not an absolute fact in areas such as inappropriate behavior as the guilt element frequently distorts people’s responses, but case study evidence throws up significant differences between the reasons for an emotional affair occurring in the first place, also what is an emotional affair, according to men or women. A married man is less likely to see the camaraderie with a female coworker as an emotional affair; to a man, the woman in the office he spends a lot of time with and he would like to sleep with, but does not, is an emotional affair. For a woman, the connection she has with a man other than her husband becomes an emotional affair when she looks forward to seeing him, makes an effort with her appearance and keeps his existence from her husband!

Do women have a higher possibility to engage into an emotional affair?

Other differences are apparent between a married man’s emotional affair and a woman’s. What percentage of men cheat because they are unhappy? The answer is around 44% whilst the level of unhappiness present in marriage is around 66% for cheating women. Some controversial studies argue that the notion of women being more faithful is old fashioned, and irrelevant in the 21st century; that far more women are sexually motivated to cheat than previously thought, they simply dress up their affairs in emotional justification, citing a lack of understanding on their husband’s part when what they mean is that they are sexually bored! What is clear is that far more women divorce their husbands than the other way round, and very few husbands were aware that their wives were conducting affairs, emotional or otherwise. This would suggest that women make better liars than men, or are more suspicious of their husbands than men are of their wives!

Most affairs start with friends from work

What is universally the same for the married man having an emotional affair and the married woman cheating platonically on her husband is that more than 80% of unfaithful people have affairs with someone they knew already as “just a friend,” most often a workmate. When considering what percentage of men cheat with someone from work, one study showed it was 62% and less at 50% of women involved with someone at work. This indicates that an emotional affair is too often the precursor to the “real” physically intimate affair. This gives the lie to those who argue that emotional affairs are not infidelity, and supports many therapists notion that they are in serious denial!

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