Women, Been Cheated On? You're Actually the Winner

It was probably one of the most painful experiences in my young life.  A man I was deeply in love with cheated on me.   And he wound up marrying the woman he cheated on me with.

But now a new study is saying that I was the winner (though not if you include the fact that he cheated on his wife, as he was only separated, with me).  Yeah, he was a real dog.

Researchers say that women who are cheated on "win," while the cheating ones "lose."   Women who lose their unfaithful mate to another woman actually win in the long run, according to new research from Binghamton University.

I went on to have many more relationships and have been happily married for over 20 years.  (I would never have met my husband if I'd stayed with that one.)

"Our thesis is that the woman who ‘loses’ her mate to another woman will go through a period of post-relationship grief and betrayal, but come out of the experience with higher mating intelligence that allows her to better detect cues in future mates that may indicate low mate value. Hence, in the long-term, she ‘wins,’” said Craig Morris, research associate at Binghamton University and lead author of the study. “The ‘other woman,' conversely, is now in a relationship with a partner who has a demonstrated history of deception and, likely, infidelity. Thus, in the long-term, she ‘loses.’"

In the case of the "other woman" in my life, I believe she is still married to my old boyfriend (even though he called and sent me flowers and wrote to me for a time, after the breakup), so I'm not sure if that's really true for everyone. 

The web site reports that research on the effects of mate loss has focused on a breakup’s short-term consequences, such as emotional distress, but the long-term effects to mate loss have not been previously explored.

In the study, researchers from Binghamton University and University College London anonymously surveyed more than 5,000 participants in 96 countries, the largest-ever study on relationship dissolution, particularly as regards to cross-cultural experiences and age variation.

"Their findings show that there are consequences of female intrasexual mate competition that may be both evolutionarily adaptive and also beneficial in terms of personal growth, and that may expand beyond mating and into other realms of personal development," newswise.com notes.

Morris, a biocultural anthropologist and evolutionist, has highlighted how certain breakups seem to hit people very hard in past research. This new research highlights the ways in which humans – women, in particular – have adapted to cope with breakups.

“If we have evolved to seek out and maintain relationships, then it seems logical that there would be evolved mechanisms and responses to relationship termination, as over 85% of individuals will experience at least one in their lifetime),” said Morris. 


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