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The Most Common (And Completely Different) Reasons Why Men & Women Cheat in Relationships!

As humans, we’re complicated creatures. And when it comes to relationships – we couldn’t be farther apart. But the biggest differences come out when the topic is cheating and infidelity.

Today we want to bring you a close objective look at how fascinating these quirks can be. At the end of the day you might find a thing or two that’ll help you be on the lookout for signs your partner might not be all that faithful.

To do that we’ve taken an in depth look in a study conducted by extramarital dating site, VictoriaMilan, results revealed that out of 100,000 married and attached candidates, 55% of them had cheated on their partners! 

These studies included couples from 21 different European including UK, France, Germany, Norway, Spain, Italy & many more. 72% of the couples were married & 28% were in a relationship but living with each other for an extended period. 

So, what exactly is it that drives men and women to cheat on their spouses? VictoriaMilan CEO, Jenni-Lee Goldstein, says: “Unlike previous generations, currently women and men cheat at approximately the same rates, though the reasons why women cheat are completely different from men.”

The statistics of the study show that 91% of all men cheat as a result of a lack of sex or sexual desire fulfillment. For women, on the other hand, the results seemed to show quite the opposite; with only 12% of women contending lack of sex as their number one reason for committing infidelity. 

But, it’s also important to note that these are not the only reasons why the different genders cheat. Let’s take a closer look below.

Why Do Men Cheat?

Contrary to popular belief, a lack of sexual satisfaction in a relationship is not always the only reason that men cheat; there are actually a number of surprising factors that lead to male infidelity.

According to The Gottman Institute, one of the other core reasons men cheat seems to be to get an ego boost. A deeper issue highlights the fact that people who have low self-esteem are more likely to cheat. Low self-confidence creates a desire for external validation, and getting it from just one person is simply not enough. Sadly, for their partners, men with self-esteem problems are less likely to leave a relationship that does not fulfill their most important needs. This is because they fear to be alone, and are more likely to use cheating as a coping mechanism for their insecurities.

Below, we have gathered some of the most common reasons why men cheat in relationships. 

His Needs Aren’t Being Satisfied

No, here we do not necessarily mean sexual needs. Often it can be little things that add up to a lot more over time. Another woman might have complimented his appearance — something his partner might not have done in a while — and things can spark up from there.

Maybe it’s been months of fighting. Maybe it’s been too long since he and his partner shared a good laugh together. Maybe he’s feeling ignored, rejected, and neglected. Whatever the reason is — there’s an incongruency in the relationship that triggered and reinforced an emotional disconnect in the first place. For some men, rather than addressing the problem head on, their thoughts drift to: “Sarah does X for me, while my wife does not” etc.

He’s Looking For A Way Out

His partner might think their relationship is all sunshine and rainbows, but he might think otherwise — and he may possibly not have the balls to confront his current partner about their issues. One of the many reasons men cheat is because it’s a trigger for a change! Some people find that having that impetus is necessary in order to get out relationships that they’re having a hard time ending.

He’s Feeling Anxious or Depressed

Everybody out there experiences depressed feelings and anxiety to a certain extent. The problem is whether or not those thoughts stem from one’s relationship. If a man is feeling lonely within his relationship, or perhaps hurt and angry with his partner for whatever reason, it could certainly lead him to cheat. However, it’s important to note that cheating actually tends to worsen any existing anxiety and depression; leaving the circle to remain unbroken.

He Has Poor Judgment & A Lack of Willpower

You’re more likely to put yourself in a situation where cheating could occur if you’re unhappy within your relationship. Whether you’re agreeing to cocktails at a bar with your friends or, even more dangerous, agreeing to a one-on-one happy hour with that cute new colleague, people who are in committed and satisfying relationships will actively try to avoid those kinds of scenarios. If he consciously and continuously decides to engage in these kinds of risky situations, something’s going on. People are well aware of the consequences of infidelity. It’s no secret — it destroys relationships, tearing couples apart.

Blame It On Evolution

There are certain theories that stem out of evolutionary psychology — namely, the theory that because women only have a chance at reproduction once a month, they tend to be much more “picky” when choosing a mate. On the other hand, men pretty much have a shot at reproduction every single time they ejaculate… We’ll let you form your own opinion on that one.

He’s Experiencing Erectile Dysfunction

Research reveals that some men who have “performance issues” – such as getting it hard and keeping it that way – are more likely to engage in infidelity. It boils down to a need for validation — if he’s unable to “perform” with his partner, does it make him less of a man? An easy way to dissipate those feelings of inadequacy is to try and find a physical connection with another woman.

Why Do Women Cheat?

While men are more likely to be motivated by physical urges, women are more often driven to cheat for emotional reasons, such as feeling neglected by their partner. 

In fact, the study conducted by VictoriaMilan reveals that women listed “My partner stopped paying attention to me” and “The other person was genuinely there for me” as their main reasons for cheating.

While there’s said to be a close link between male ego and sexual performance, a woman’s ego is far more likely to be satisfied by attention and affection. And, just like in the case of men, women who have self-confidence issues are more likely to crave validation in the form of attention from others.

Alicia Walker, an assistant professor of sociology at Missouri State University, spent a year interviewing women who have had extramarital affairs. In fact, her findings lend themselves to the idea that many women cheat for sexual variety.

Walker contends: “In my studies on women’s infidelity, I found women were outsourcing the sexual pleasure in their relationships in an effort to remain in their primary partnerships. They believed that if they continued to go without their sexual needs being met, they would have to break up their families and break their partner’s heart. None of the women made the decision to cheat lightly. After years and sometimes decades of trying to improve things in their marriages, they decided to look elsewhere.” Sites like VictoriaMilan are making a lifestyle just like this very easily accessible.

In many other cases, women who cheat are deeply unsatisfied in their relationships; and they’re not always looking to save their primary relationship or marriage. Sometimes, it’s the total opposite. 

Charlynn Ruan, clinical psychologist and founder of Thrive Psychology Group says, “One of the main reasons women cheat is to blow up a relationship that makes them feel trapped in some way. Often they’re with a partner who seems like a nice person, but is controlling, stifling, or emotionally unavailable.

Or, even if she’s not entirely ready to leave, a woman might “act out” because she has what many behavioural psychologists refer to as an “insecure attachment” style. 

Below are some more in-depth examples of the most common reasons women cheat.

She Feels Emotionally Starved

If a woman is feeling emotionally unfulfilled, it could lead her to stray from her marriage or relationship. Sadly, some couples might find themselves immersed in their careers and focused on every aspect of their life other than their partner. This can swiftly turn into neglect and loneliness — two further reasons why some women choose to cheat on their partner. As a result, they end up looking for emotional attachment somewhere else.

She’s Dealing With Low Self-Confidence

There are countless reasons why some women struggle with low self-esteem. Whether they’re unhappy in their career, their appearance, or their relationship — dealing with poor self-esteem is a common reason to cheat.

For example, if you were feeling crappy about yourself and someone came into your life who gave you compliments and showed a genuine interest in you, you might be tempted to explore something with this new person who makes you feel so amazing. In this case, almost anyone could find themselves suddenly willing to give it all up in order to find the validation they seek and are not receiving in their primary relationship.

She’s Seeking More Excitement

There are some people who cheat for the pure thrill of it, and women can often be these very thrill-seekers. They might love their significant other and would never dream of leaving them, but they also might feel they need that little extra “something”.

Most thrill seekers miss the feeling of another person not being able to keep their hands off them. They want to feel wanted; they want to feel sexy. As soon as they lose this feeling in a relationship, they’re at risk of going and looking for it elsewhere.

She Feels Sexually Unfulfilled

If someone isn’t getting the sex they want with their partner, it’s no surprise that they’ll go looking for it outside of their relationship. As some people get older, they naturally become less interested in sex (some, even developing a full-blown sexual dysfunction), which could result in considerably less exciting sex life. 

Whatever the reason, not paying attention to the sexual needs of your partner could lead to much bigger problems in your relationship. When a woman feels her partner no longer wants her sexually, she might feel deprived and uncared for, causing her to go outside of the relationship to find what she so desperately needs.

She’s Acting Out or Expressing Anger 

There are some people in the world who think that there is no better way to get back at a partner who cheated on them than to cheat themselves! In some cases, if a woman has been cheated on, she may cheat on her partner as a form of revenge.

There is Hope

Regardless of whether it was the man or the woman who cheated in a relationship — or why they decided to commit the act of infidelity — there is certainly hope for the future. With the help of sites like Marriage Booster, you can rebuild your trust, romance, and passion in your relationship; saving yourself from divorce or future cheating endeavours. This is a process that involves a lot of hard work and dedication, but it’s 100% worth the victory that results from it.


Sigurd Henrik Vedal is an American-Norwegian entrepreneur; investor; e-commerce- and social media specialist; life, business and relationship coach; and public speaker.

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