Extra marital affairs are common and they are on the rise. More often than not, an affair signals a lack in the existing relationship. It may not mean the end of a relationship but it is certainly a step in the wrong direction of you would like to keep a happy marriage. Affairs undoubtedly cause someone to be less connected in the existing relationship as one person is preoccupied. The constant lying and being secretive may be exhilarating at first but after a while it wears a person down and can cause emotional issues.
Everyone likes to think of themselves as an upstanding person with good morals and having affairs threatens to ruin that carefully crafted self image.
Mira Kirshenbaum, an experienced marriage therapist suggests that infidelity and cheating can be positive things in addition to their obvious and much debated negative aspects. She suggests that such affairs can provide people with insights about their relationship and lead to a realization as to what needs to change or improved in their real relationship. She suggests that when people who are aware of the mistake they have made come to this realization, the guilt conscience might lead them to work more towards keeping their paramour happy. This applies for both men and women alike. The affairs act like a therapy without a person having to lie down on the psychiatrist’s couch.
Experts divide relationships into four wide groups, namely, object affairs, sexual affairs, emotional affairs and secondary relationships.
-Â Object affairsÂ the cheating man / neglects their relationship in order to pay attention to something like work, sports etc. resulting in a detriment to their love life.
-Â Sexual affairsÂ those in which the cheating partners rent hotel rooms or visit other men/women just for sexual relations and no emotional relations are involved.
-Â Emotional affairsÂ where the physical intimacy is lacking but more hours are spent talking or spilling secrets to a third person rather than to one’s partner.
-Â Secondary relationshipsÂ are the traditional extra marital affairs where a person is involved in more than one relationship at the same time and both relationships have the emotional as well as sexual aspects to them.
Observers and expert state that affairs usually come into existence when you miss something in your primary relationship. A bit of thought and scrutiny to the affair can lead to the realization as to what is missing and can help add the spark back to the primary relationship leading often to a happily ever after. People tend to be in the same kind of relationships whereas each affair is different. Again, scrutiny into the affairs can help one to find out what they want from their relationship.
Some experts that when a man or woman is having troubles in their love lives it leads to an altogether drop in their spirit. The affairs help in restoring their spirit which later helps them making correct decisions in their lives and more often than not help them to realize the importance and happiness they gain from their primary relationships.
There are many reasons why people have affairs but here are a few of the more common ones:
Dissatisfaction – feeling uninspired and unhappy can encourage someone to look elsewhere to get their needs met. Often the monotony and routine that sets in makes people restless and they begin to want more
Midlife Crisis – reaching an age where you start to wonder if you are still desirable to the opposite sex can cause a lustful reaction. No one wants to get older and attracting the opposite sex is validation that we still ‘have it’.
A way out – this is usually when the relationship is over and the person doesn’t have the decisiveness to end it without an external event helping to push the issue forward
Boredom – similar to point one. When the spark is gone, some may go looking elsehwhere
Opportunity – a one night stand or a chance to be naughty whilst knowing you won’t get caught. The temptation can be too much for some.
How to avoid affairs:
There is no foolproof way to avoid affairs but there are ways to increase your chances of staying faithful to each other
- Communicate regularly and not just about surface issues. Make sure you still know your partner and take time to explore deeper issues together
- Spend quality time together – just the two of you
- Be affectionate with each other. Physical affection binds you together and creates greater intimacy
- Do things for your partner that increase the love and goodwill in the relationship. Acts of service that don’t need to be done can go a long way
- Be complimentary and bring out the best in your partner
- Speak openly when there are issues. Suppressing problems leads to simmering resentment and this is poison to a realtionship
- Keep your expectations realistic. No one is perfect and every relationship has its ups and downs
- Don’t compare your relationship to others. You have a unique relationship and what others do should not matter to you.