In our increasingly digital world, the pursuit of sex outside of a primary relationship can be easily facilitated by technology, in particular, “Friend Finder” apps hookup. Some of these websites and applications, especially Ashley Madison are specifically designed to facilitate extramarital sexual encounters. In fact, the motto of the web for men says. “Life is short, Have an affair,” and for women. “When divorce is not an option” From today, reports Ashley Madison have more than 28 million members, and is just one of the many free applications currently promoting infidelity.
It seems there are a lot of traps going on out there. But why do so many men and women in committed relationships choose to cheat?
What makes these people otherwise thoughtful and well intentioned to ignore their vows of fidelity, with the risk of serious harm to your relationship and emotional well-being of your partner? The answer is quite complicated, with men and women participate in a variety infidelity separately but wide of reasons.
The Cheater’s High
For both sexes, one reason for cheating, according to a study published last year, they might “get away with” just makes people feel good, emotionally and psychologically. While this research does not deal specifically with sexual activity was seen in unethical behavior in general, and certainly the findings can be extrapolated to sexual activity.
For the study, a diverse group of researchers led by Nicole Ruedy at the University of Washington conducted a half-dozen separate experiments. In one trial, two groups of participants responded to the problems of mathematical logic and computers. The first group of participants received no advice or help. The second could click a button to see the correct answer before giving his own response; were asked to ignore that button and solve problems without the crutch, but were also told that there was no penalty for pushing. The researchers were able to see who uses the “right answer”, ie who cheated and who did not button. They found that 68 percent of people who had the option of making took trap. Thus we see that, given the right circumstances-deception is perceived as victims, no punishment, about two-thirds of those eligible for cheating.
In another experiment, the researchers paired a true participant in the study with an actor pretending to be a participant. The actual participants to solve puzzles were asked, and were told they would be paid for each puzzle solved correctly within a specified period, with his work being described by the other party (the actor). Half the time, the actor called Solver work correctly, but half the time the actor inflated score solver, thereby increasing financial payment from that person. None of the actual participants in the duets reported cheating lying, and who benefited from dishonesty grade reported feeling better on the test than those who had. In other words, get away with a harmless bit of cheating seems to have caused a pleasurable response. So again we see that, under the circumstances, the right-trap is perceived as victims and no looming punishment-people actually tend to feel good about cheating, despite their moral and ethical beliefs.
Overall, the results of the six trials in this study fly in the face of the ancient belief that unethical behavior triggers negative feelings in most people. The research showed however that people can actually enjoy the process thanks to “get away with something”, built in neurobiological rewards of emotion and excitement. And it seems that this is doubly true if and when they think their unethical behavior is not hurting anyone.
The authors of this study marked increase in positive affect “cheater High.”
The Cheater’s High and Sexual Infidelity
Again, the research mentioned do not look sexual or romantic infidelity. But sexual betrayal does in many ways mesh with the types of deception studied, in which the majority of people who cheat on their spouses and couples choose to view their behavior as harmless and victimless, reasoning that “What they not know will not hurt them. “and the fact that cheaters do not usually get away with their behavior, sometimes repeatedly and for long periods of time simply reinforces this distortion.
As a physician who specializes in treating sexual disorders, I have worked with literally hundreds of men and women who have cheated on their engaged couples. And I’ve heard every rationalization, justification, and reducing imaginable minimum (and more than a few that are seemingly beyond imagination), but the primary rationalization almost always comes down to some form of the following: “As he (or she) does not know, what difference does it make? ”
In other words, almost every cheater I’ve worked with has convinced himself that he or she is not hurting anyone. And this belief that what they are doing is victimless, along with his ability to get on with it repeatedly, allowing them to experience high cheat.
In reality, of course, sexual infidelity is far from being victims. Spouses and other family members are hurt by the cheater, even before the infidelity is discovered, as active cheaters tend to be emotionally distant from their loved ones; less sexual, physical, or love your spouse; and less available. Also, to get away with infidelity and again, cheaters often tell lies that do not make sense, spend the money or time that they have, etc.
And then when the deception is finally discovered, according to a recent study of women married to serial cheaters, many betrayed wives experience stress and anxiety symptoms characteristic of acute stress disorder (PTSD), a serious mental health problem with chronic internal and external consequences.
Causes of the Cheater’s High
The authors of the study suggest cheater’s-high three main ways that people get emotional and psychological satisfaction of unethical behavior:
- Cheating provides income, social, or other at work, better grades financial gains, meeting someone “beating” anymore. These windfalls are generally causality to feel good.
- Cheating leads to a greater sense of autonomy. Circumventing rules limiting other cheats gives a greater sense of control over their own lives, so that they feel better about themselves.
- Cheating often involves “beating the system.” Mental exercises involved can make the most interesting and exciting life, causing people to enjoy their lives more, and once more, feel better about themselves.
Each of these concepts is far indeed with sexual deception. First, the “profits” of infidelity involve having more (and maybe more exciting) sex and sexual activity, orgasm and, in particular, are among the (dopaminergic) most pleasurable experiences human beings can have without taking stimulant drugs such as methamphetamine or cocaine. Secondly, to circumvent one of the votes of monogamy and other relations linked to long-term social customs cheats gives a greater sense of control over their sexual lives, a sense that it can be extended to other areas. Thirdly, and I see this all the time with my clients, there is a definite sense of accomplishment and enjoyment joined just get away with something.
A high aspect cheat to be explored further is whether it serves as a motivator for future performance. In other words, does (allegedly) cheating victimless undetected and the “high” that encourage this behavior induces more traps in the future? That would certainly help to explain the fact that people who engage in sexual infidelity rarely do so only once. In fact, most do so repeatedly until you are caught (and often continue to do so even after they have been captured).
That said, the reasons why people act the way they do are never as cut and dried as most of us would like, and motivations for sexual infidelity are even more complex and very complicated because innate impulses to sexual activity and emotional intimacy are thrown into the mix. However, it seems likely that the good feelings caused by getting away with unethical act without perceived victims (such as sexual infidelity) it may be a significant contributing factor.