Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Why Men Cheat?
What's the number one reason men cheat?
Ninety-two percent of men said it wasn't primarily about the sex. "The majority said it was an emotional disconnection, specifically a sense of feeling underappreciated. A lack of thoughtful gestures," Gary says. "Men are very emotional beings. They just don't look like that. Or they don't seem like that. Or they don't tell you that."
Josh says he cheated on his wife, Jennifer, because he felt underappreciated at home and started feeling insecure. "That insecurity was really the catalyst," he says. "I didn't feel comfortable going to the one person in the world I should be going to, which is my wife."
With daily worries like bills, children and chores, Gary says it's easy for couples to drift away from appreciating one another like they should. Gary says the other woman often makes the man feel better about himself. "[She] makes them feel different. Makes them feel appreciated, admired," he says. "Men look strong, look powerful and capable. But on the inside, they're insecure like everybody else. They're searching and looking for somebody to build them up to make them feel valued."
Don't be afraid to praise your partner or tell him that you appreciate what he does, Gary says. "We get married because we want one person in the world to really think we're wonderful for doing all the things that we do. We all want the same thing," he says. "And the more we give it, the more we get it in return."
How often does a man cheat on his wife with a woman who's more attractive?
Not as often as you may think. Gary found that 88 percent of the men surveyed said the other women were no better looking or in no better shape than their own wives.
Every couple will eventually face certain life changes, but Gary urges couples to think back about the interest they took in one another when they were first dating or newlyweds. "Everybody deserves that. Everybody wants that," Gary says. "Because it's not about the sex, what everyone's been made to believe. Anybody, no matter how you look, can be admiring and kind and warm and give you that extra little pump and that extra kindness and hang on your words."
How often do men confess to cheating on before being caught?
Only 7 percent of men who strayed told their wives without being asked. Fifty-five percent of men in Gary's study have either not told their wives or lied after being confronted with hard evidence. "I kind of tell people, 'If you're going to wait for him to come tell you, go buy a lottery ticket, because you like playing against the odds,'" Gary says.
Just as the little things are often signs that something is wrong, the little things can also help rebuild relationships, Gary says. For example, if a man tries to make breakfast and burns the toast, Gary suggests staying positive. "[Men] want to feel like they're pleasing their wives. … When you give him the message mainly that you screwed up, then believe it or not, it makes him feel insecure. [He thinks,] 'I can't win,'" Gary says. "Engender the good feeling of the trying and the effort that he's made. That's where the love really is."
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