Here Are 5 Ways to Explain Why People Cheat
You could write an encyclopedia about the reasons men and women cheat on their significant others, and you still wouldn't cover the half of it. Everyone's got their own screwy circumstances, accompanied by the lengthy story they tell themselves to make sense of it, and the extreme moralizing to cut down on their guilt. But, for the sake of science, you can also simplify the hell out of infidelity, like researchers did in a recent study published in the Journal of Sex Research.
You can guess some of the lovelorn reasons for cheating given by the 495 young adults surveyed, per the study:
"I had ‘fallen out of love with’ my primary partner."
"I was not very committed to my primary partner."
But other responses are a bit more, well, shitty. (Not that infidelity is ever good.) For instance:
“I wanted to enhance my popularity.”
"I wanted a greater variety of sexual partners.”
“I was drunk and not thinking clearly.”
So it isn't just the disappearance of love that makes people cheat. It's also issues of esteem, sexual restlessness, and poor control in certain situations—i.e. problems that exist outside the relationship itself. Someone is more likely to cheat if they have personal problems like feeling insecure in the relationship or not committed. Same goes for those who are less conscientious humans or generally avoid closeness with partners. Women's Health also reports that the study supported the accepted fact that men more often cheat to satisfy sexual desire, while women do it because they don't think their needs have been satisfied by their significant other.
This study isn't exactly surprising, and it backs up previous research. But it does boil down all the complexities of unhappy, non-monogamous relationships into a few phrases. Hopefully, you'll never have to use them yourself.
This story originally appeared on Esquire.com. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.