Most people think divorce is caused by cheating, but the truth is usually far blurrier than that.

Cheating, stepping out on your marriage, is almost always a symptom of something wrong with the relationship itself. Though often cited as the reason for divorce, it usually isn't. A recent poll revealed that 77 percent of men who were divorced after infidelity said they had no regrets and 81 percent preferred their new sex lives.

Why?

It isn't rocket science. For many who are married, sex dies. It's a cliche for a reason. Between children and laundry and dirty dishes and cluttered bedrooms, sex takes a back seat. And in many cases, we ladies are to blame. 

This isn't to say there are not cads who are selfish animals who will cheat no matter what (Tiger Woods, I'm looking at you), but those guys are not always so hard to spot. You just have to know what to look for. If he seems too smooth or if he cheated on his spouse to be with you, you should have your caution up.

Of course even a nice man can stray and, in those cases, the fault isn't just with him alone. And ladies, this doesn't just apply to you! You could also be the one doing the cheating if your man does any of the following:

  • Lets himself go: We aren't all going to look 25 forever. No one is expecting that. But guys, if you're sporting love handles, a spare tire, and man boobs where you used to have a six-pack and pecs, you may want to hit the gym again, especially if your wife is still working it. Same goes for us ladies. You may not look exactly like the day you were married, but 50 pounds, an XL sweatshirt, short hair, and sweat pants are not good for the old libido. At least try to look nice for your spouse.
  • Takes you for granted: We are guilty of this. How many times do we forget to thank our husbands for the little things because we feel misunderstood? He does the same thing. He doesn't tell us how much it means when we do his laundry or forgets to kiss us when he leaves in the morning. He doesn't ask how our day is or listen to our stories. We do the same. Then the guy at the park who actually laughs at our jokes starts to look pretty attractive.
  • Nags: At a certain point, pillow talk becomes nagging. You can catch yourself asking him to do the dishes more than kiss you. He asks you to pick up his dry cleaning more than he grabs your bum. At a certain point all marriages go there, but the trick is not to stay there.
  • Gives up sex: There is no magic number for all marriages. I know in my marriage, if our number dips below twice a week and neither of us is deathly ill, we need a date night and some alone time. But some people need once a month, some less. Only you know your marriage. Whatever that magic quota is, hit it or talk about why you aren't.

It's the homewrecking formula -- find out what is missing and be that. If you work to make sure there is little to nothing missing and you discuss whatever is missing, you can practically cheat proof your marriage.

None of these things is the path of destruction by itself, but all of them put together can cause a person to stray and look elsewhere. Everyone talks about how cheating is the cardinal sin, but I say that sin is actually forgetting to communicate.

Do you think cheating is a symptom?

 

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