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Affairs and Divorce - Why do Married People have Affairs?

Has your marital partner had an affair and you canít understand why? Being betrayed by an unfaithful spouse can leave you feeling hurt and confused; frequently, spouses never recognize the signs that their spouse is having an affair, thus they are stunned to find out that they have been betrayed when the truth is finally revealed. Further, the signs of the affair probably went unnoticed because you failed to realize there was a significant problem with your marriage in the first place. This is not to say that you are at fault for not recognizing that your spouse was having an affair; in fact, unfaithful spouses are quite skilled at hiding their activities. Nevertheless, the sudden shock that your spouse has betrayed you with another can be quite unsettling.

So, why do married people have affairs? There are probably as many answers to that question as there are people in the world; nevertheless, there are a number of common reasons why people engage in extramarital affairs. Below we will examine some of the most common reasons why people have affairs.


People frequently engage in affairs because they have grown bored with the mundane, daily routine that they share with their spouse. For instance, when couples first meet and fall in love, everything seems new and exciting. Later, after the couple has been together for a while, the attraction to one another fizzles out under the pressures of everyday troubles and mundane routines. In a desperate effort to recapture that feeling, some spouses will engage in an affair. Such an affair is based primarily on the need for excitement or new things.

Filling the Void

Some partners within a marriage may develop a feeling of emotional abandonment. If one spouse does not spend enough time with a partner, or they significantly lessen the amount of time spent with their spouse, the partner that is feeling the emotional neglect may engage in an affair to fill the void. Such an affair is based on emotional fulfilment and is not necessarily based on feelings of love.

Getting Even

Some individuals may believe that their spouse is not paying enough attention to them. Thus, to get even, such individuals may have an affair to make their partner jealous. Likewise, some partners may believe that their partner is having an affair whether it is true or not, and they, in turn, will have an affair as a way of getting even with their partner. Further, a partner may be significantly angry at their spouse for whatever reason and will decide to have an affair as a way to hurt their spouse. Such affairs are based on anger.


Some individuals possess such a low sense of self-esteem that they engage in affairs to make them feel better about themselves. By having an affair, such individuals will begin to believe that they are attractive to many individuals and such a belief will temporarily boost their self-esteem. Conversely, the guilt that such individuals will later feel for having the affair will adversely affect their self-esteem. Thus, a vicious cycle is created in which the individual repeatedly engages in unacceptable forms of behaviour to boost their self-esteem and then, in turn, feels shame for having engaged in such activities.

Sexual Diversity

Some people have affairs because they are not satisfied with having one partner or they are driven by desires that, they themselves cannot explain. Sexual addiction can be the cause of such affairs, and if your spouse frequently has affairs with numerous individuals, you may want to consider that your spouse has a definitive problem that only they can address through counselling.

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