Is Infidelity Our Culture’s Most Popular New Trend?

Why Are People Crazy for Cheating?

According to the Los Angeles Times, infidelity may be television’s hottest new trend, becoming a central plot thread in shows like “The Good Wife,” “Ringer,” “Revenge,” “Boss,” “The Walking Dead” and “American Horror Story.” Apparently it’s a topic on everybody’s mind, so much so that “prime-time TV is starting to look like an ad for Ashley Madison.”

(Summarizing the attitude of many, Berlin ext. 5370 says: “True love is like good take-out: 30 mins later you look for more.”)

The Los Angeles Times reports:

A decorated American soldier — an Iraq war hero secretly turned terrorist — falls into a reckless affair with the CIA agent who’s set on exposing him on Showtime’s hit drama, “Homeland.”

Principal players on CBS’ “The Good Wife,” the CW’s “Ringer,” ABC’s “Revenge,” Starz’s “Boss” and AMC’s zombie drama, “The Walking Dead,” have sex outside their marriages, and no one on FX’s “American Horror Story” can keep his pants on.

Even “New Girl,” a Fox comedy, wouldn’t be the “new girl” in an apartment with three strangers if her boyfriend hadn’t cheated. She caught him in the act, as viewers see in a cringe-worthy flashback.

Prime-time TV is starting to look like an ad for Ashley Madison, the online dating service for married folks, where the message is, “Life is short. Have an affair.”

To be sure, bed hopping as a plot point is nothing new. In fact, it’s as old as storytelling itself (see: the Bible). But the proliferation of adultery on TV — seemingly occurring far more frequently than in real life — could be the result of a perfect storm of cultural and sociological factors, industry veterans and sociologists say.

Among those factors: Cynicism about marriage is rampant, and about half of all marriages end in divorce, a number that’s remained steady for years. “Since the ’60s and ’70s, we’ve seen a general loosening of mores in this country and a cultural shift away from the core values of marriage, fidelity and monogamy,” said Julie Albright, a sociologist at USC. “People believe marriages don’t work anyway, so seeing affairs on TV kind of serves as a model for how things can and will go bad.”

Marriage has never been less popular. A recent Pew Research Center study found that a record-low 51% of people older than 18 in the U.S. were married in 2010, a precipitous drop from 72% in 1960. If the trend continues, married people will no longer be the majority in a few years. New marriages decreased by a sharp 5% last year, and there are fewer married people in all age groups. The biggest decline has been among 18-to-29-year-olds, from 60% a half-century ago to the current 20%, perhaps illustrating that the younger generation has little faith in getting hitched.

The Journal of Family Psychology said recently that between 20% to 25% of married Americans will stray, though some estimates put that figure as high as 60%. (The research, mind you, depends on the willingness of those participating to come clean.)

What do you think – why is our culture so interested in infidelity?

“For some, love and sex are intertwined, but most people have the ability to enjoy love without sex or sex without love – if they let go and allow themselves to do so.” – Reed ext. 5105

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4 thoughts on “Is Infidelity Our Culture’s Most Popular New Trend?

  1. Abigail X9570

    Hello Krishna,
    Again another article for deep thoughts my friend. This is one of those things that is just plain wrong and its unacceptable behavior. It causes disruption, heartache, loss of self respect, self esteem, the local bar,drug dealer, doctor, therapists and pharmacy profits to rise.
    This is one of the worst things a human being can do to another. Its about trust on all levels. When we give ourselves sexually to another we connect on more levels than I care to discuss here today. In the 60 & 70 free sex, love rise got us hit with the 80’s aides wake up call. Now that should right there give those who can’t control themselves cause for concern its not just that one disease its a who host of them. This is just an excuse to allow another form of addiction and yes I said that into our lives. I thought that we were suppose to be civilized yet this is like caveman behavior. Sad to say sex, scandal, violence sell in this country people make big money off of selling pain. Pretty dishearting and we as a culture allow and feed it. I hope we wake up. When you give bad behavior attention and energy its like feeding a cancer. We have a young society growing up not knowing how to be at peace with love and harmony.That saddens my heart on all levels. My youngest son who is 23 said to me recently mom I can’t find a girl who has not been with a ton of guys or who does not know if they are straight or lesbian. I say live and let live if you must have multiple partners then stay single and out of relationships period and travel with those who are at your same level and vibration then you can all pass your like energy around and leave those that want a real connection alone. We all know that just does not happen so just be careful and take the time to get to know someone before you give them the keys to your heart. And for Gods sake pay attention to the red flags most people ignore the warnings this is where we get into trouble.

    Happy New Years & Many Blessings

    Abigail ~

  2. ehnglo

    infidelity would not exist if honesty remained an active part of the relationship. in my personal experience? having sex with someone other than my true love made me distinguish the difference between love and sex… a genuine and true love bond will always overcome obstacles.

  3. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    The REAL victims are the children…….it’s not setting a good example for the next generation, who are growing up way too fast as it is.
    And a good example of this is the ” carry-over ” to all of the kids that were caught in the different schools and colleges cheating on exams. And these kids that say ” everybody does it ” is hardly a good excuse!
    Cheating is cheating which is, when you come right down to it, lying…..whether it’s in relationships, or life in general.

    And I don’t judge…. but it is true, some marriages do not last, and there can be exceptional circumstances involved…..some marriages were doomed from the get-go for many reasons and some marriages are SO toxic that they should be ended…

    ….but I wish for those with children, that they would end the marriage the right way and THEN start a new relationship, if only to set an example for their kids.

    As I said I don’t judge my clients, usually I receive calls after they are in an affair and are stuck and don’t know what to do next, or how to proceed……… but still, I DO worry about the damage being done to the next generation.

    Blessed Be )O(
    Gina Rose ext.9500

  4. -quinn ext. 5484

    happy new year Krishna Bill – you are the best….

    i love TV and watch quite a few of the shows you mentioned. as for the sexual activity of those that are married and in relationships and stepping out on their main stay is indeed a very interesting and compelling point in drama and comedy.
    love is not sex.
    sex is not love.
    sex is something you can give away all day and still take it home.
    the more you love the more you love…
    in this ever changing world acceptance of the cheater has become for many easier to deal with. or maybe forgiveness is becoming more popular. or just maybe the old one person for one person is played out.
    i would of gasped if – leave it beavers mom and dad stepped out on each other. the cleavers cheating oh dear!
    divorce was not even a topic on TV back in the day… I’m giving away my age here but true it is. sex, divorce, cheating – were not shown on TV.
    on the other hand they did smoke.
    mans mind is expanding in the entertainment realm, i wonder if the influence of TV is promoting the sexual activity off screen?
    i just wish if people where not happy in their sex or love life that they could talk about it and have an open marriage or make it work somehow. i am not one to cheat, i just don’t have the time LOL.
    on a cosmic level i wonder what the lesson is for mankind facing this on going conundrum.


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