What Is Infidelity?

Infidelity is breaking a promise to remain faithful to a sexual partner. That promise can take many forms, from marriage vows sanctified by the state to privately uttered verbal agreements between lovers. As unthinkable as the notion of breaking such bonds may be, infidelity is common. And when it does happen, it raises thorny and painful questions. Should you stay? Can trust be rebuilt? Can you and should you forgive and move on?

Recent Posts on Infidelity

Cheating Yourself? I Hear the Advice, I Do What I Want

Real behaviour change is not about willpower, or stages of change, but about satisfying wants and dealing with needs along the way.......it is about coherence at all levels of the person......

Stories of Seclusion: Embarassed into Isolation

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on July 26, 2015 in How To Do Life
The price of an affair can be great indeed.

A Crash Course on Gender Differences - Session 10

By Eyal Winter on July 25, 2015 in Feeling Smart
On Sex, Procreation and Sperm Compitition: How do Human Beings Differ from Animals.

Why Millions of Cheating Spouses Could Soon Be Exposed

Most cheaters don’t expect to get caught. They tell lies, they keep secrets, and they cover their tracks. They control the flow of information received by their betrayed spouse, and then they run off and do what they want, when they want, with whomever they want - ignoring their marital vow of sexual fidelity and telling themselves they’re not hurting anyone.

How Society Could Accommodate Multi-Partner Marriages

Legalizing same-sex marriage has started people talking more seriously about the possibility of multiple-partner marriage. For some that means a slide down a slippery slop to absolute chaos, but it does not have to be that way. This blog looks at two alternative ways to structure multiple-partner marriage and explores some of the possible social impacts.

Sexually Open Marraige

By Frances Cohen Praver Ph.D. on July 19, 2015 in Love Doc
“I’m not feeling well. I can’t get going.” Sharon said softly. I remarked, “You seem sad.” Her voice picked up as she said “I am but I don’t understand it. My life is great. I’m married to this wonderful man, have an adorable six year old daughter, a lovely home, and a satisfying career.”

Top 10 Reasons Relationships Fail

Most of us want to meet and settle down with the “right” person, and most of us want such a relationship to last. At the same time, the majority of romantic partnerships end in dissolution. What are some of the major causes? Here are ten common reasons why relationships fail...

When Cheating Isn't Cheating

By Frances Cohen Praver Ph.D. on July 12, 2015 in Love Doc
Tossing her long blonde hair over her shoulder, Sarah smiled, “Stan wants me to marry him.” “Do you want to marry him?” I asked. Her dazzling smile turned to a frown. “I’m thinking about it. It’s a problem though.” I asked, “Why’s that?” “I’m married to Evan.” She said in a matter of fact tone.

The Causes of Infidelity: Players Gonna Play?

By Noam Shpancer Ph.D. on July 01, 2015 in Insight Therapy
At some point in their lives most Americans enter a monogamous intimate relationship. Over time, up to half will stray. Why?

Safeguarding Against Infidelity

By Stan Tatkin Psy.D. on June 30, 2015 in The Puzzle of Love
Research reporting that financially dependency increases a man’s chances of cheating on his wife may fail to take into account the mitigating factor of secure functioning.

Is Everyone on Match.com Looking for a Match?

By Marty Klein PhD on June 29, 2015 in Sexual Intelligence
Many people use dating sites to window shop. Their mates, however, may not be amused.

Couples 101: The Emotional Dance of Intimacy

Most couples start their relationships with starry dreams and positive expectations. But, sometimes relationship patterns develop that leave us feeling resentful and stuck. Understanding your own and your partner’s attachment style can help you negotiate this emotional dance with grace, and develop patterns that allow you to have the relationship you want and deserve.

How Psychologists Can Help Curb Cheating in Sports

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on June 18, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
It seems as if every week a new scandal involving cheating and antisocial behavior in sports is capturing the headlines—and psychologists are finally stepping in to solve the problem.

The 8 Biggest Myths About Lying

Sometimes we make ourselves believe a lie because the truth is too painful.

What Are the Psychological Effects of Casual Sex?

Much of my audience is appalled by the fact that infidelity is so prevalent and that it has been so thoroughly monetized, while others simply shrug their shoulders and say things like, “People have been cheating since the beginning of time, so what’s the big deal?”

Ethical Issues in Dating

By Fredric Neuman M.D. on June 07, 2015 in Fighting Fear
A description of what expectations one may have in dating, and what obligations one takes on.

Have We Discovered a Prime Reason Why Some Men Cheat?

By Rebecca Coffey on June 01, 2015 in The Bejeezus Out of Me
Do men who feel "pink washed" by their wives' earning power try to reclaim their masculinity by catting around?

A Crash Course on Gender Differences - Session 4

By Eyal Winter on May 30, 2015 in Feeling Smart
Jealousy, cheating and evolution

3 Facts Everyone Needs to Know About Couples and Affairs

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on May 27, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
How would you respond if a friend or loved one decided to stay with a partner who had cheated?

After the Break-up: Embracing the Lessons

By seeing a broken relationship as presenting lessons to learn, you can boost your resilience and bounce back from heartache. Embracing lessons also leads to fewer regrets and helps you see any breakup as an opportunity for growth and a better life, rather than a reason to lose hope, feel diminished, or die.

Is Cheating Our New Normal?

By Peg Streep on May 21, 2015 in Tech Support
Have we become a nation of cheaters, so focused on getting what we want that we don't care what means we use?

Infidelity Goes Public

In 2001, entrepreneur Noel Biderman launched Ashley Madison, a dating/hookup website designed not to help single people meet, date and potentially fall in love, but to help people in established relationships engage in sexual infidelity.

Lust and Loyalty: When Sex and Love Don’t Mix

The difference between fantasy and hot-blooded betrayal.

How Attachment Styles Impact Attitudes Toward Infidelity

Why do people respond differently to sexual versus emotional infidelity? People's attachment style may be a crucial factor.

I Ain't Got no Body

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on April 16, 2015 in Shadow Boxing
A former prosecutor offers collection of U.S. homicide cases that went to trial, despite having no body.

Evolutionary Psychology Is Not About "Bettering the Species"

People often think that since "evolution" has a lot to do with speciation, then "evolutionary psychology" must be about "bettering the human species" in some way. It's not. At all. Read this if you want to know what evolutionary psychology is really about.

A Crash Course in Emotional Negotiations: US vs. Iran

By Eyal Winter on April 03, 2015 in Feeling Smart
What we can learn from countries that rely on emotions and religious beliefs to make deals

Jealousy Hurts Love, or Does It?

By Noam Shpancer Ph.D. on April 01, 2015 in Insight Therapy
Jealousy in relationships is common and universal, with deep evolutionary origins. Research shows it can affect relationships in complicated and surprising ways.

Indiana: Where "Freedom" Requires Discrimination

By Marty Klein PhD on March 31, 2015 in Sexual Intelligence
"Religious freedom" was never intended to exempt people from legal obligations.

The Top 4 Reasons Relationships Fail

Committed relationships can survive ups and downs, but some patterns and behaviors can create more permanent damage. Infidelity is only one of the reasons relationships break up. These four negative patterns raise red flags about the state of your relationship or marriage. If you recognize your relationship here, it's time to change course.