One thing’s for certain, only people in a crumbling marriage cheat. Except, that’s not true at all. IllicitEncounters.com, the UK’s leading and longest running dating website for married people, surveyed 1000 of its members, finding that 45% of affair-seeking men and 34% of affair-seeking women declared themselves to be in a happy marriage.
“It’s a result that may surprise some,” says IllicitEncounters.com’s spokesperson, Christian Grant.
“A common misconception is that anyone who cheats must be at the end of their tether with their partner, and that simply isn’t true. What’s equally as false is the idea that anyone who seeks an affair does so purely because they’re ‘bad’ or ‘immoral’ – there are all sorts of reasons.”
One of those reasons, as one anonymous respondent explains, is the lack of intimacy that develops the longer a marriage goes on: “[I’m] happy with life running smoothly in most respects. I have a comfortable life and I get on with my wife and we are good friends. [However] she is older than me and is no longer interested in a physical relationship and thus the warmth that goes with that. I still want that physicality but not in one night stands – in a long-term old fashioned relationship of getting to know each other.”
And he’s not alone, with a further 30% of men (and 27% of women), claiming that a lack of intimacy and passion is the main driving force behind their desire to have an affair.
Another claims: “Although absolutely lovely, my partner is not enough for me. I need a lot of attention, affection and conversation, and he is not able to meet those needs due to working long hours and being very tired when at home.”
Grant adds: “Maintaining the level of passion and intimacy in a relationship is incredibly difficult. Are we meant to be monogamous by design? The evidence suggests otherwise. It seems to be the case that a once romantic marriage can often develop into something that resembles the relationship between a brother and sister. Some people can live with it. Most can’t.”
However, an affair isn’t always driven by lust. There are, in fact, a plethora of different reasons, with IllicitEncounters.com’s survey finding that 30% of men and 22% of women noted health issues as their main motivation to search for a partner outside of their current relationship.
One respondent noted: “My partner lost her libido 2 years ago as a result of menopause, so there’s no longer any intimacy, sexual innuendo or lovemaking.”
“It might be tough to talk about, but for a lot of men and women of a certain age, things like menopause, erectile dysfunction and a handful of other barriers come into play,” explains Grant.
“It’s unfortunate and unavoidable, but it invariably has a negative impact on the intimate side of one’s relationship.”
Finally, the survey found that, for 20% of men and 25% of women, cheating on their partner was an integral component of keeping their marriage a happy.
“Variety is the spice of life,” says one female respondent. “Having an affair actually keeps me married – i.e. I don’t walk out because I’m bored or unhappy.”
The remainder of the respondents listed miscellaneous reasons for their desire to have an affair.
NOTES TO EDITOR
IllicitEncounters.com is the UK’s leading and longest running dating site for married people. With over 1,000,000 members across the UK, you’re sure to find your perfect match.
Established in 2003, we have been providing a meeting place for like-minded married and attached people for nearly 10 years. Our members have one thing in common – they are all looking for a little romance outside their current relationship. Whether that’s the occasional bit of flirtatious chat, a regular coffee date, or a full-blown affair, that’s up to them.
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