In today’s society, infidelity is one of the leading causes of marital disruption and divorce. In accordance with societal norms many myths have been associated with infidelity. The following myths and their effects on marriage will be discussed: Everyone has affairs, the affair is the direct result of the faithful mate and, the marriage must end in divorce. In examining the various myths, this paper will challenge the greater issue, can marriage survive infidelity?
There was a time when more smart-conscious decisions were made relating to sexual relationships. In particular, sexual relationships within a marriage. However, times have changed. The pillars that hold up our individual sexual values have started to crumble. It is estimated that two out of three marriages fail due to infidelity. This is a scary statistic considering that people believe a marriage can survive infidelity. This brings us to our first myth: Everyone has affairs.
People tend to associate with others who share the same values and morals as they do. People who are unfaithful tend to assume that everyone is, while those who remain faithful tend to believe that extramarital affairs are unusual. Since infidelity takes on several different forms, it is appropriate to consider the fact that many people believe that this sort of behaviour would be considered acceptable.
The first form of adultery is Accidental Infidelity. This can happen to the more careless person, but at the same time, to the person whose values and commitments are tenuous. They lack self-control and respect for both themselves and their spouse. Any situation where they are left alone with the opposite sex is an opportunity for an “accident” to occur. It was shocking to find out that most cases of infidelity occur with couples who are less than twenty -five years old, one would have thought early marriages where happy and care free (figure one).
The second form of adultery is the Romantic Affair. This is usually considered the most disruptive affair because it involves such intense feelings and is a big threat to a marriage. The Romantic Affair usually occurs at a point of crisis in a marriage and is short-lived; it usually burns out quickly.
The last type of affair that is common in several relationships is Philandering. It is known as compulsive, continuous, secret infidelity. It is a well-known pattern that exists in no more than twenty percent of marriages. This sort of affair is usually committed by men who are afraid of control by women, and who are in love with their masculinity. They believe that “love” is a game that they are constantly playing. They are no good at marriage since the game involves obtaining women and discarding them. Each one is like a trophy.
The Accidental, Romantic and Philanders affairs are the three most common and therefore it is easy to see why many believe that “everyone has...