What are the factors that lead
to an affair? Believe it or not, it's not about SEX, and it's not about Physical
other woman. For many men who have cheated their wives or mates were far
MORE attractive than the other woman, and their husbands found their wives
more sexually satisfying, too. Affairs are usually the result of one single
factor, but can be the accumulation of many. For most an affair was a way
of meeting a certain emotional need that their partners were not providing.
Although, there are often other factors as well, such as boredom; the desire
to punish one's partner; excitement, risk, or challenge; and even 'power'
to name a few. Usually if a man is having, or contemplating having, an affair,
he is using it as a way to fill an emotional void he feels in his current
relationship with his mate. Most underlying causes of infidelity are based
on the person (who is doing the cheating) seeking certain needs that were
lacking in their relationships.
What are these needs?
Men, just like women, seek certain emotional needs. These may be different
needs than the ones we feel, but just as important to their fulfillment as
our needs being fulfilled are important to us. What are a man's needs?
Sexual fulfillment: Face it, women like affection and men like sex.
A man is feeling his most free to give love for a woman when he is engaged
in sex with her. It is one of the few times he can relax and feel love with-out
the expectations of having to 'pay' for it. What I mean when I say 'pay'
for it is when a man says I love you, or feels love, he also feels the tremendous
burden of what those words mean to him. He must now provide for her. Keep
her happy and secure. Provide a safe home to which they may raise a family.
Seek steady and financially secure employment. Seek her approval on every
single plan before putting it into action. Yes, when a man says "I Love You"
his insides turn with fear and worry about being able to provide all those
I just mentioned. Love to woman often means security. Love to a man often
means work! When a man is having sex with a woman he is allowed to feel his
love for her free of all the 'work' that comes with the word love. He can
open himself up and feel not being taken, drained, or pressured to provide...
but experience the pure joy of mutual giving and taking with no other reason
than loving bliss.
A man also seeks in his mate a buddy or a pal: This is when he feels
his needs for acceptance being taken care of. A man wants his woman to be
his best friend, his pal. He wants her to share an interest in his activities.
This, in turn, makes him feel you are showing an interest in him! If he wants
to golf, or fish, and you show no interest at all in joining him, he feels
like his likes are unacceptable to you. Like you somehow don't approve of
him or have interests in him. When you join him you provide his need for
you to be interested, and accepting of him. He feels attractive, comfortable,
and secure. He feels validated and understood (Hence the good old adultery
line "She doesn't understand me!") By joining in his hobbies and activities
you are showing him you are interested in him and accept everything about
him, and that you trust him to make you happy.
Not finding his mate physically attractive: Oh, OUCH! This one hurts,
but it is true. Men are definitely creatures of visual stimulation. Note
the marketable comparison in the amount of men's 'girlie' magazines (they
are meant to tantalize, tease, and whet the appetite) as compared to women's
'boyie' magazines. Women sometimes forget this need because they don't have
the same visual needs. Women feel love, and that bond excites them. Men see
Unhappy or dysfunctional homelife: Calm surroundings, happy kids,
dinner on the stove and a loving wife welcoming him with open arms makes
a man feel appreciated and rewarded for all his hard work that he does to
provide for his family. He feels acknowledged, appreciated, and compensated
by a happy, grateful family. He is not a failure!
An unhappy wife, messy home, and unruly children can somehow be turned around
as proof to him that as a man he is a failure. He feels lack of admiration
and sees no praise for his accomplishments or talents. Wow! Men are such
work, and now we have to tell them they are great too? Yes, men need, I mean
NEED the approval and admiration of their mates. He wants to be reassured
that she thinks he is great. A master mechanic, a tower of strength, a sex
god! A great provider, and the hardest working man in the world!
Basically, if a man is continuously lacking in any of these above needs for
any length of time, he may subconsciously fall prey to getting them met 'outside'
of the relationship. What might at first had started out as an innocent lunch
meet at the office with a co-worker, could eventually evolve into a relationship
when he sees his emotional needs being taken care of by this other woman
(who may not even be aware she is doing it!). That is not to say he set out
to cheat. Most cheaters weren't even consciously aware they were getting
involved with another woman until they WERE already involved. They got caught
in getting their needs met and completely were unaware of the outcome. Yes,
his affair with another woman can definitely lead to love for her and his
mate may eventually lose him to this other woman. This is because, as the
man becomes more comfortable with his lover, the void and distance subsequently
placed in his marriage begins to grow. His mate and him eventually lose all
but passing everyday communication...creating an even larger emotional distance.
This distance just more confirms his victim status and lack of satisfaction
with his mate and paves way to enhance an even more open communication between
the other woman and him, resulting in more a feeling of fulfillment with
her over his mate. As he becomes closer to getting his emotional needs met
with his new lover and less with his mate the tables turn and he begins to
fall in love with the other woman and feels less and less love for his mate.
This doesn't always necessarily mean he will chose the other women over his
mate--as men tend to be motivated out of guilt . This feeling of guilt may
make many men remain with their mate, while still seeing his lover on the
side, simply out of guilt of leaving her, hurting her, or the pain he is
causing his family and his children. Many men stay in unhappy marriages,
not because of obligation, or love for their mates, but rather out of guilt
or feelings of shame.
SIGNS THAT HE IS HAVING AN AFFAIR
There are certain signs men give when they are having an affair. But even
before we discuss these let me just say this. If you have a history of special
emotional insecurities, such as a very low self-esteem, overly strong feelings
of mistrust in men, or issues with jealousy and insecurity, then suspecting
your mate of having an affair may just be a result of your own issues and
insecurities and less likely of his really having an affair. However, let
me say this, if you are a relatively secure woman, who is generally trusting,
non jealous, and have had a relatively satisfactory amount of security in
your relationship with your mate and you find that you are suddenly and
repeatedly dismissing 'clues' of an affair, or if you have been lately trying
too hard to convince yourself that he would never have an affair, then odds
are that he is having an affair. Women need to trust their intuitions and
'gut feelings'. If we are basically confident, self-assured women, with no
past history of insecurities, overt jealousy, or mistrust issues, and we
suddenly start to wonder, well...figure it out for yourself, SOMETHING had
to place that doubt or perception of uneasiness in our minds, and most likely
it wasn't us.
Some of the first signs of an affair is a subtle change in your partner's
behavior. You sense that "something is different" in the relationship.Your
mate becomes emotionally distant or emotionally unavailable. He is no longer
as supportive as he once was, and you may feel as if he is pulling away.
Could he have a secret?
Just like the signs of cancer, a mate having an affair will display changes
in his normal patterns of behavior. He is suddenly spending more time away
from you or your home. His demeanor has changed as he begins to pay more
attention to his appearance. He may even begin an exercise regimen, purchase
new clothes, comb his hair in a different way, or even buy a flashier car.
He begins more and more to be less attentive to you, and he may either become
more or less interested in sex. His character changes. All of sudden a man
who was the life of the party becomes quiet--or an introvert suddenly becomes
more outgoing and sociable. He may make subtle referrals or comments about
dreams of what he wants to accomplish in his future where in the past he
was content with his standing in life. He may become disagreeable,
short-tempered, vague, or easily distracted. He may seem to be
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