Female Infidelity: More Damaging Than Male?

It’s the old adage that “boys will be boys,” and if somebody’s cheating in a committed relationship, it’s usually assumed to be the man who’s doing the deed. However, women cheat too—and when they do, it’s often far more damaging to the relationship. While men may cheat simply because they’re put in a situation where they can get easy sex and may have lowered inhibitions, women cheat for a new chance at love, to feel emotionally cherished, or because they’re convinced the relationship is finally over. They cheat with their heart (“Your Cheatin’ Heart,” as Hank Williams once put it), and because of that, female infidelity is far harder to recover from.

CNN Health reports:

In a committed relationship nothing hurts more, or is harder to recover from, than infidelity, and this is even truer when it’s the female partner who’s been doing the cheating.  In recent years I’ve noticed a precipitous rise in the number of men who have been betrayed by adultery, and while there’s an overall consensus among professionals that female infidelity is on the rise, the trend doesn’t garner nearly as much attention as male infidelity  That’s surprising, because female infidelity is often much more damaging to a marriage. Don’t get me wrong: Male cheating is definitely harmful. But when a woman fools around, it’s often the death knell to a couple’s relationship.

It’s often said that men cheat for sex, while women cheat for love, the theory being that men can more easily compartmentalize sex and emotion, while women typically need to experience an emotional connection to a person before feeling sexual desire. Without those pesky emotions to stand in the way of a potential mistake, a guy is much more likely to get himself into trouble (especially if alcohol is involved and inhibitions are down) or to get involved with someone for whom he has no feelings.

What do you think—is there a qualitative difference between male and female cheating?

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11 thoughts on “Female Infidelity: More Damaging Than Male?

  1. Chula

    Either way, both sexes need to either work it out or get out of the relationship. There are too many diseases, illegitimate babies and deadly conditions that can be brought back to the innocent (or not so innocent) spouse. JUST BE MATURE AND DO THE RIGHT THING! Then this debate would not even be necessary. It’s really ridiculous how much time is being spent on a subject that people could really just own up to what has to be done and do it, you don’t just fall into a situation, you take part in everything that happens to you as the cheater(and also as the “cheated on”). YOU CONTROL YOUR ACTIONS, NO ONE ELSE.

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  2. Tracey Shine

    Harder for men to recover after they discover their mate has cheated……..This is a popular stereotype; mainly because the position the man holds as the leader in the relationship. Leaders are suppose to be followed. The betrayal of cheating is not just emotional, similar to the woman, but a sign of defeat after the quest of conquer, not just mere betrayal. Men buy into this mindset because of peers, traditions, and ego. Not that the gender of the Cheatem is greater, just the ego and tradition. Change the mindset that is not defeat but betrayal or temptation and this myth might balance for both genders.

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  3. mikej

    men cheat because it is game it is about the chase and the catch. then they brag or talk to the fellas. women do the same thing but they are good at it. men tend to tell on them selves. women will tell on themselves if you pay attention. money,sex and communication are big issues. if your sex is bad then money and talking wont matter. if the money hits hard times people dont talk then the sex is tough then the communication is out. People are not honest with each other or about what they really want. People dont want to listen and grow strong together. They allow the negativity of others to rule who they are. Just like the 80 – 20 rule. men and women both will take a chance on someone to get maybe a small something they are missing at home, then get caught now they lost the 80 % for the 20%. Just to find out the 20% really wants the same things but they are only gonna get maybe 60% from the one they got. Usually its not a step up but a step down. Then people say if they dont know it want hurt them but when they find out they all get crazy even though they were cheating. If they continue they must be positive with each other its all working and working together. its not always easy. people have to learn each other and think outside the box most people say they will but they wont because they are afraid too go outside the box.

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  4. Bertina

    I think that this is an inaccurate statement. Some women do not cheat with their heart. Some women do it because maybe their partners are inadequate in bed. I believe that if a man fullfils his duties as a man, then the woman wouldn’t even think twice about cheating. Men should be versatile in meeting a woman’s needs. We have to do it, so then they need to return it. So, if men are not satisfying the woman, then he shouldn’t be upset when she cheats. He will be lucky if he finds out. Women want satisfaction, too.

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  5. Jazzy Dudley

    Men are prideful! period that’s why its more damaging and crock of crap that a man wont put up with what he does if a female does it.

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  6. Lisa McGlown

    It is all the same to me. I will not tolerate a man scheating on me, and would not expect a man to tolerate me cheating on him. Commitment means commitment.

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  7. avon

    Besides I’m still learning and going through motions as well so I can relate to everything that’s being written and said it will put a damage not on each other but on the heart you can’t care for someone if your still looking for more and/or someone else on the side.

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  8. avon

    It goes both ways if the man is willing to cheat as well as the woman then the relationship wasn’t meant to be, why waste each others time looking for a relationship your not ready to commitee to or afraid of losing the feeling of good sex with that person. Mine as well stay single to you feel your tired of putting yourself out there only to get hurt more damaged or even talked about for not being ready to commitee, in due time when you really feel a connection with someone you will know if its due to physical or emotional just by the way you feel and start to act when you see each other with other people then you have a better understanding on a choice either you care about the person or you just want to keep them as a fling it all depends on how far you decide to go and where your looking to find on the inside of your mental physical and emotions.

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  9. Kutie

    Sorry, but I believe that the overall effects of cheating is equal……maybe if the “male” is cheated on more often, he’ll think twice about Doing the cheating, when they most often do…..they haven’t gotten a taste of their own medicine “enough”…in other words, I truly feel the male thinks he is “entitled” to cheat, just because he uses the excuse that he is, after all, the “Male”!!

    Reply
  10. misskrystalmisskrystal

    Thanks for the article. Yes, I have had some men just ripped apart over this.
    And, have seen so many times, the men having to make a choice, later, to take the woman back.
    Please call me if you feel stuck or torn over a love triangle or love situation. Remember, nobody said LOVE was perfect 🙂 but it sure has it’s rewards!
    Bless you,
    Miss Krystal

    Reply

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