By Hara Estroff Marano; Photography by Pixabay
These factors seriously up your partner’s chances of cheating…
1. The workplace
Providing people with constant contact, common interests, an income to camouflage the costs of socialising outside the office and an ironclad excuse – the workplace is the ideal place for affairs to fester. A study in the Journal of Family Psychology revealed that those who worked, but whose spouses didn’t, were the most likely to be unfaithful. Opportunity at the office is most ominous when it mixes with uneven power on the home front (think Jesse James and Sandra Bullock). “But no one profession has a lock on infidelity,” says psychologist Dr Kristina Coop Gordon.
2. Travel frequency
“You’re away from your partner, in situations where you’re encountering plenty of people,” says Gordon. “It certainly facilitates one-night stands.”
3. Level of education
As this increases, so does your likelihood of cheating – it may be a marker for more liberal attitudes towards sex. Ditto a history of divorce, or divorced parents, especially if either had an affair. Women with a higher education than their husbands have more affairs, perhaps because they’re less dependent on a spouse.
READ MORE: ‘I Cheated – Should I Tell My Partner?’
4. Personality differences
Spouses who are comfortable with conflict are less likely to have affairs. Openness, which makes you more satisfied with your relationship and better able to express feelings, is also a characteristic of non-cheaters. Some researchers believe that openness is essential to commitment and enduring satisfaction in a relationship.
5. Low levels of agreeableness
If you’re agreeable, it means you’re compassionate and cooperative. Low levels bode poorly for monogamy. More important, however, is whether couples are matched on that trait. People who see themselves as more agreeable than their mate believe themselves to be more giving, feel exploited by their partner and seek reciprocity in outside relationships.
Exposure to alcohol, an exhausting day of travelling or challenging work all raise the risk of infidelity. They disable sexual restraint, researchers found. Plus, “some people don’t feel desired in their marriage, and they want to see if they can be desirable outside of it,” says McCarthy.