This is the 1 reason why women cheat (Marieclaire)

This is the 1 reason why women cheat (Marieclaire)

‘It started out as lunch, then an occasional glass of wine after work − pretty run of the mill,’ my friend Aisha* tells me breathlessly one morning as we jog through the park. ‘But then I began to realise the dynamic I had with Matt; it was like he was activating a more brilliant version of me. One night we went to a work dinner and ended up kissing in the Uber home, the next I’m arranging to meet him for sex in a hotel.’ Harmless enough if Aisha wasn’t in a seven-year relationship with the father of her child. ‘The thing is, I love Peter and he’s a great dad,’ she adds as a qualifier for her infidelity. ‘But with Matt, I become a different person − lighter and happier.’

There was a time when infidelity was thought to be motivated by long-term dissatisfaction with a partner; where love and lust had waned. But things have changed. Aisha isn’t the only thirtysomething mother I know in my circle who is having an affair. Today, infidelity is more closely allied to female sexual assertiveness − a sense of ‘I’m taking this for me’. It’s what acclaimed sexual psychologist Esther Perel has identified as a desire for self-actualisation, where women are straying because of dissatisfaction with who they have become, rather than unhappiness with their partner. ‘In truth, we are not looking for another person,’ Perel says. ‘We are looking for another self.’ Read more

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