Married Women Who Cheat Are All Miserable or Crazy? We Don’t Think So

women cheatingDr. Drew, a great-looking sex therapist and Teen Mom whisperer, broached a difficult subject on his HLN talk show last night. The topic was why married women cheat, and the answers, well, were not that simple. Dr. Drew explained that women who experienced trauma were more likely to cheat than women who hadn't, because "humans have this crazy way of re-creating and re-traumatizing themselves." Then Tucker Max, author of I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell, weighed in with his two cents. He says that women only cheat for two reasons.

Either they have "deep-seated" emotional issues or they're "deeply unhappy with the relationship they're in."

I don't know if I can really get behind the idea that women only cheat on their husbands if they've got "issues" or if they're unhappy. Painting the reasons people cheat with a broad brush never really made that much sense to me.

The decision to be unfaithful, to break a promise, to lie, is extremely individual. Yes, I'm sure there are studies that show that women who were sexually abused are more likely to cheat on their husbands, but that sect aside, I don't know if you can really narrow it down and say there are only two reasons women sleep with men who aren't their husbands.

For some women, it could be an easy, spur of the moment decision that isn't the culmination of years of unhappiness; instead, it's the presence of an opportunity. Someone might jump a co-worker in the heat of the moment, someone might agonize whether to jump the co-worker for years before actually going in for the kiss.

Point is, women, and men, cheat for all kinds of reasons. And I don't think you even have to classify yourself as "unhappy" in your marriage to decide to sleep around. There are a lot of people out there who are excellent at compartmentalizing their lives. I'm not saying it's right, I'm just saying I think you can be just as content at home as you are banging a stranger in a Motel 8 ... in the same day.

The one thing I will say, though, is that communication is, like, the key to everything. (How's that for painting with broad brushes?) If I were going to put a label on women who are more likely to cheat than others, it'd be those who aren't that great at sharing their feelings, talking about problems, or who don't know how to say what they want. Sometimes the mere thought of having an intimate conversation is scarier than the thought of having anonymous sex with a stranger.

Dr. Drew's advice? Talk with your spouse, and listen to your spouse. Sounds so easy.

Why do you think women cheat?


Photo via cubanrefugee/Flickr



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Karmi... KarmicChild

I actually agree with them. Certainly, the surface reasons may vary from woman to woman, but I think that the root cause is almost always one of the two given.

nonmember avatar Shelly

They forgot the biggest reason...enormously selfish.

dirti... dirtiekittie

well, i don't know about all that. i'll admit to cheating in my younger days (never on my husband!) but i blame stupidity, not really being ready for a relationship, and being an attention whore. i also know that i didn't have NEARLY the risk of loss that i do now (a stable marriage, a happy home and my beautiful children) and so it seemed like such a - - flippant? - - thing in my mind. i'm not excusing what i did, nor am i justifying it by throwing those guys under the bus. it is what it is, and it happened.

i don't agree that we can just keep "digging" until there's only "two roots" left to the problem. different strokes for different folks, even if a majority of them are all doing the same stroke... there's still others out there who don't fall under cookie cutter assumptions of what kind of person they are.

kuwel... kuwelsdestiny

Regardless of the reasons why they cheat, none of them validate or excuse it. Cheating is disgusting. My husband once accused me of cheating, early in our relationship. I asked him why he called me a hoe. He said I didnt, I replied, yes you did. If you think I would cheat on you, you think I am a hoe. Slut, whore, cheap. Sorry thats how I feel. And further, I would never sacrifice my integrity for anything, which is what a woman - or man - does when they cheat.

nonmember avatar Nicole

So um, women who are utterly happy in their marriage cheat? I don't think so. I think he's spot on. Either you've been damaged and are self-sabatoging, or you're unhappy in the relationship and you want to sabatoge it.

the4m... the4mutts

I agree with dirtiekittie.

And I think cheating in a marriage, and cheating on a bf/gf *while both WRONG* are different as well. You can cheat when younger due to selfishness/immaturity/whatever without being previously "damaged" somehow being the reason

mande... manderspanders

Sounds to me like Dirtiekittie was UNHAPPY if she was in a relationship she "wasn't ready for" and cheated. Cheating IS ALWAYS wrong - married or not. If you made a commitment to another person to be in a relationship, then you should never sell out your integrity. If you need to cheat, then you should just leave.

I agree with the 2 root causes. I also firmly believe that once a cheater, always a cheater.

Flori... Floridamom96

The only possible third reason is that they are completley selfish b*tches.

Caera Caera

Women cheat for the same reason men do: because they're assholes. Anything else, including all the "boo-hoo I'm traumatized" stories are just excuses for weak, pathetic human beings - that goes for both sexes.


mommy... mommy2annaliese

Who cares why they cheat? if you cheat, you deserve to be divorced.

If you want to be with someone else for whatever reason atleast a little bit unselfish and leave your spouse, it not only hurts them but their kids.

People who cheat are scum, I don't care why they do it.

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