Not that we put a whole lot of credibility on astrology, but every now and then, did you ever notice that daily horoscopes will sometimes say “don’t play with fire” or “don’t make your flirting too obvious”, or “someone could be hurt by your extreme gaiety.”
One day our horoscope read, “you may have cheated before and gotten away with it, but this time, you just might get caught.” Of course, we’re not married – never have been – but we felt we were being accused of a social crime that we could not possibly commit. Unless, of course, it was referring to how we cheat on our diets by grabbing that innocent looking bag of chips off the supermarket shelf one time too many.
A strange report appeared on cyberspace recently saying that it is difficult to come up with accurate statistics on cheaters. First, men tend to exaggerate their exploits while women tend to downplay them. So if women downplay them, it proves that they too are having a rollicking time in this infidelity roulette but don’t really care to talk about it.
There seems to be a contradiction somewhere though. Married women who have cheated also admitted to being disinterested in sex and that after a certain age, they’d rather do other “fun” things aside from sex. Females have a different architecture than men in that they don’t think that sex is important to survive. They may think that sex does wonders to their complexions and moods, but some do prefer to go shopping than engage in an entire afternoon of lovemaking.
Men on the other hand can’t do without it. It’s the way they were molded out of clay. Most times we hear women say, “oh, he’s so sweet and intelligent”; rarely will you hear a female say “oh, he’s great in bed!”. That last expression would typically come out of a male’s mouth.
Married Women who Cheat - Taking “Good” Wives for Granted
Appearances can be deceiving. If husbands are too wired for work or for their weekly night out with their buddies, they won’t ever notice what’s going on with their “good, traditional wife.” Oh sure, she spends her time baking muffins and frequenting the malls to observe the latest in shoes and clothes, and she seems content enough playing the settled housewife.
Does she cheat or is she likely to cheat?
“My wife? You got to be kidding. She’s as tame as can be. I trust her unconditionally.” Are you sure? You may want to think again.
Imagine – you’re in the office eight hours a day – sometimes 12 hours during month end. Then you go play tennis or golf on the weekends or have a beer with your friends. How much time have you spent with her this last week? And when we say time, we mean quality time. When was the last time you took her out for dinner, surprised her with a nice gift or gesture, told her how much she means to you and how much more wonderful your life has become since you married her?
Many social scientists who have studied the psychology of cheating wives (and detectives who were hired to find evidence of infidelity) will say that sex is not the only determinant of whether or not a woman will stray. She may be running low on the emotional quotient side, and she may be lacking in reassurances from her spouse. Very few men realize that a woman needs to be wooed – courted – charmed – frequently. All the sweet nothings you used to whisper in her ear can’t stop after you put the wedding band on her finger. You see, she may be your wife on the marriage certificate, but emotionally, she’s a gonner. You should be aware of where her mind wanders off.
You know, all that talk about marriage being a solid institution is just like a whole publicity stunt. If a copywriter was asked to create a brochure edifying the qualities of marriage, that copywriter would probably use these words: romantic, passionate, strong, resonant, robust, hardy, solid, indestructible, indissoluble. Sorry, no can do. Fire your copywriter. He’s living in the dinosaur age.
Marriage, although it merits being called an institution, is actually a very fragile merchandise – this side up, please. It’s more delicate and unsteady than you think. You co-habit with your spouse 365 days a year. Of those 365 days, how many were good days? How many were bad? And how many were characterized by a stinging argument or two?
Doctors Hendrix and Hunt (Receiving Love, 2004) said that the only way “to clean up the river of life is to go upriver and transform all intimate partnerships, and then parenting. Heal the splits in the individual, the couple, and the family, and then our social fabric will not be so plit and torn.”
We see the social fabric being torn to shreds when little, insignificant infidelities are allowed to flourish. After awhile, they don’t seem so insignificant anymore because they could lead to a more permanent rupture: divorce.
Signs of Married Women who Cheat
Ruth Houston drew up a list of the top 10 infidelity signs. Not that knowing them will help prevent infidelity; she cautions about completely relying on these signs to nail your mate. There are outward signs and there are subtle signs. What we should worry about are the subtle ones.
Some of the outward signs of married women who cheat are:
Spending too much time in the office
You know that your wife isn’t a corporate mogul. She holds some kind of supervisory position which does not really warrant her staying too late after work. It’s not like her job involves dealing with another time zone like Hong Kong or New Zealand where there is a 12-hour difference.
Going to the gym, see you later!
You also know that she’s always hated exercise. So why the sudden interest? And she’s losing weight steadily, and has changed her wardrobe entirely. What’s worse, you catch her smiling or giggling to herself. Bloody hell, she’s happier now than she ever was.
You thought you’d drop by the office and surprise her with a lunch invite, but she’s not in the office. Fact is, her colleague said she didn’t show up for work that morning. Or else she agrees to meet you in the soccer field to cheer your son’s soccer game, but you’re by yourself on the stands and she never showed up.
You can’t even get into her inbox anymore because she’s changed the password. You’ve caught her blanking out the screen way too often every time you step into the study.
Out-of-town trips with girlfriends
A weekend shopping in New York, okay. Apple-picking in Vermont for the three-day weekend, fine. She seems to be planning out-of-town trips more often. And yet she’s always said that her girlfriends make her weary because of their small talk. Why the 360 degree turn?
There are other signs like strange entries in her credit card statement, decrease in sexual activity, suspicious phone calls (“wrong number, hon”), and picking fights with you and storming out of the house and being gone for hours. As Houston said, it’s not so much the outward manifestation of infidelity, but the hidden signs - the ones you never can pinpoint or define exactly.
Your suspicions may be nagging, insistent. Do yourself a favor and ask her without showing anger. Or if she refuses to talk, perhaps you can suggest that counseling might not be a bad idea.
Dr. Laura Schlessinger – remember her – talked about the marital conflict factor in her book Woman Power (2004). Not only has she talked to millions of women and listened to their tales of woe and love, but has also come to know men, in their most natural and “raw” states. She said that many men have confided in her that when they married, they realized that they gave up their single life of dating and fooling around which they found to be a lot of fun…for awhile. When they decided to take the other fork in the road, that of marital commitment, they express the pride and joy of being a husband and father, of being the protector of the home and taking on the role of leader and lover at the same time. These men said that the only time they are unhappy is when they are marginalized and dismissed by their wives. Yet, most men in this predicament will stay and suffer out of loyalty and obligation, and because that’s what a “real man” would do.
But if their wives cheat, is that still the case? Should they go on as silent, suffering souls and take it all in with manly pride? Being marginalized is one thing, but being humiliated is an altogether sifferent scenario.
What’s a man supposed to do then?