Study Says Women and Men Cheat for the Exact Same Reason: Boredom

I don't know if we should find this surprising but middle-aged women have affairs for passion and sex, not to leave their husbands.

According to a new study, women missing passion and sex in their marriages have affairs -- but no intention of divorcing their husbands.

I guess we like to have our cake, and eat it, too?  Sorry.  I couldn't resist.  But why not?  Men have been having it like this for years, if you believe the stats (of course, we do it, too).

“Being happy in marriage is far different than being happy in bed,” quotes Eric Anderson, a professor of masculinity, sexuality, and sport at the University of Winchester in England and the chief science officer at, a popular Web site for those interested in having extra-marital affairs.

In their study, Anderson and his co-authors focus on 100 heterosexual, married, females between the ages of 35 and 45, and their conversations with potential suitors on, in hopes of determining what drives this subset of women to infidelity.

The researchers found that the large majority of women — 67 percent — were seeking affairs because they wanted more romantic passion, which always included sex.

“But, the most surprising finding is that none of the 100 women were looking to leave their husbands,” said Anderson, who co-authored the study with Matthew H. Rafalow, a doctoral candidate in sociology at the University of California-Irvine, and Matthew Ripley, a doctoral candidate in sociology at the University of Southern California. “Instead, they were adamant that they were not looking for a new husband. Many even stated their overt love for their husbands, painting them in a positive light.”

Sound weird?  Not really.  Let's face it.  Relationships get pretty stale after you've been in them for 10 or 15 years.  Add kids, jobs, stress, aging parents -- and who wouldn't want a temporary escape?

Hold on to your horses.  According to Anderson, he thought women might be looking for sexual affairs because they were unhappy with their husbands or because they felt unloved by their husbands. “But this was not the case,” he said. “Our results reflect not martial disharmony, but the sexual monotony that is a social fact of the nature of long-term monogamous relationships. The most predictable thing about a relationship is that, the longer it progresses, the quality and the frequency of sex between the couple will fade. This is because we get used to and bored by the same body.” 

While popular culture suggests that men cheat because “they are horny and women cheat because there is something wrong with the emotional aspect of their relationship, our findings challenge these perceptions,” Anderson said. “Our research suggests that men and women are not as different from each other as some may think.”


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