After more than 17 years of counseling wives that were cheated on and the men that cheated on them, I have identified the top 3 reasons men cheat. In general, the rate of men cheating on their wives is much higher than that of women cheating, however women do cheat, too. It is estimated that 1 in 3 men will cheat on their wives and contrary to popular belief, their cheating has less to do with sex and more to do with the way men need to be loved.
1. They Feel Unappreciated
Men love to know that they are king of their castle, the greatest lion in the jungle. They wrestle inside themselves for recognition and appreciation. They rarely do anything for free. They always want a smile, a wink, a hug, a sexual gesture, or a “Wow, you are incredible moment,” because it shows that they are appreciated. They don’t depend on their money or their status to give them this feeling, but rather, they depend on the women they fall in love with. You see, men can go out and make money “with a mask on,” but they can’t eat, sleep and live at home with that same mask for too long. At some point they are going to let their wife into the struggles they face and the better she is at navigating conversation that gets to that place, the better off their relationship will be.
When a woman feels that a man doesn’t need to be appreciated or that she should not have to do that for him, she will become like a nagging fly to him and he would rather live on the rooftop or in a desert than to live with a woman who doesn’t know how to appreciate him.
When men don’t feel appreciated, it makes them feel insecure. And when they feel insecure, they start to get confused about who’s on their side and what their purpose and responsibilities are to the people on their team.
2. They Feel Emotionally Disconnected
Most women think men are not very emotional because they don’t express their emotions the way women do. Men are very emotional and have a very difficult time managing their emotions. They are what I call “emotional extremists” because when they are emotionally expressive, it’s often at the extreme end of the expression itself. So men want to connect at deep emotional levels that most women probably can’t handle. Some men actually have said that their wives could not handle their emotions, so they don’t even go there, but they need it so bad. Most of their extramarital affairs did not start with sex or attraction, but rather with deep emotional connections and emotional fulfillment. Men live for that. They need someone to reach them there and help them make sense of manhood. Again, they depend on their wives to do this.
3. They Choose To Cheat
Finally, it boils down to choice. Men who cheat make the decision to do so, which is not always an easy decision. The more they love their wives and value their reputation and their faith, the more difficult it is to cheat. But the desperate needs of manhood are so vitally powerful that 1 in every 3 men eventually makes the choice to cheat.
Leroy Scott MS, MDiv, NCC, LPC-LA, LMHC-FL is a Relationship Expert and Life Coach. He can be found on Twitter, Facebook and at leroyscott.com.