A few months ago, Psychology Today posted an article called ‘13 Reasons Why Men Cheat,’ and the article is genuinely fascinating. The author of the article, Robert Weiss, had worked as a relationship therapist for over thirty years now and has basically seen it all.
Weiss notes in the article that he is aware that women also cheat but that he has covered that topic more than enough times and wanted to focus solely on men for the time being. For the most part, Weiss claims that men will go out of their way to blame anyone except themselves for their actions.
For example, in his time as a therapist, Weiss has recounted hearing men blame the other woman, their boss, their spouse, or even their children for why they would cheat. Some men even claim that it wasn’t “real” cheating because there was no physical intimacy. Weiss claims that most men minimize their actions with statements like these:
1. “I’m not doing anything that most of my buddies don’t do. If you don’t believe me, ask them.”
2. “It didn’t mean anything to me, I promise.”
3. “If my wife was more attentive/nicer to me I wouldn’t have needed to cheat.”
4. “I’m only flirting on tinder, I never meet up with any of these women so what’s the big deal?”
Weiss claims that this type of reasoning is all based within denial. “From a pyschotherapy perspective, denial is a series of internal lies and deceits people tell themselves to make their questionable behavior seem OK,” Weiss explains.
Of course, this is not an answer to the question of why men cheat, this is simply a rationalization of their actions. According to the article, all sorts of various dynamics play into the reason why men cheat on their partners. Generally speaking, here are some of the reasons Weiss lists.
1. Immaturity. Men who do not have a lot of relationship experience may not take monogamy seriously, thus leading to infidelity. They simply lack the emotional maturity needed to stay faithful.
2. Co-occurring Issues. A man with other issues (addiction for example) may have a hard time staying in control of himself at all times. When one form of self-control goes, it can affect decision making and lead to cheating.
3. Insecurity. These issues can be a dime a dozen. He may feel unattractive, too old, too young, not smart enough, not making enough money, etc. Weiss says an “astonishing amount” of cheating in men is linked to mid-life crisis. To bolster his ego, a man may find another woman to make him feel desirable.
4. It’s over. In these cases, the man typically is already over his current relationship but doesn’t have the guts to end it for whatever reason. Instead of breaking up, he cheats and ends things that way. Sometimes these men don’t want to leave until they have another lined up as well.
5. Lack of Male Social Support. Having a lack of social life or friends can cause co-dependence and when a man is expecting to receive all of his support from his partner, he may wind up feeling undervalued. This will cause him to seek support elsewhere.
6. Anger/Revenge. Some men cheat to get revenge on their partners for something that may have happened in the past. In these cases the infidelity is never treated as a secret, it’s used as a weapon.
7. Childhood Trauma. Certain past issues can cause current issues for all people, not just men, but because of society’s way of dealing with trauma in men, it’s possible that he may have never dealt with his issues. This can manifest as commitment issues.
8. Unfettered Impulse. A man who cheats out of an unfettered impulse has probably never thought about cheating nor has he desired it, but the situation simply presented itself to him. Out of curiosity and without even thinking about what it would do to his relationship, he went for it.
9. Selfishness. Men who cheat out of selfishness never had any intention of being monogamous, according to Weiss. These men view monogamy as a sacrifice and they see themselves as their primary concern, therefore lying and sneaking around isn’t a big deal to them.
Of course, Weiss notes that men’s reasons for cheating may differ, but these are some of the most common reasons he’s come across in 30 years. Simply put, no matter the reason, these men did not have to cheat. Weiss maintains that the best way of fixing your relationship is simply by communicating.