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How Most Affairs Begin: Real-Life Examples, Statistics, and More

Michael Tierney
January 29, 2023

Marriage is complicated, requiring both halves of the couple to commit and compromise to create the best possible lifestyle. Most people marry their partners because they can envision a future with them and are willing to alter their lives to ensure their partner can enjoy life with them. Some marriages are extremely successful, and life with your spouse feels complete rather than a major adjustment.

Unfortunately, not every marriage is as healthy as it should be, and a rift grows between the spouses. These rifts can be emotionally and psychologically draining since it takes an act of love to commit to someone. Having that same love challenged is one of the most heart-wrenching situations we can face.

One of the biggest threats to marriage is infidelity, which brings your spouse's commitment to you into question.

You probably want to disprove the idea that your spouse is cheating on you, but sometimes, the reality is disappointing. While the revelation of infidelity is heartbreaking, you will undoubtedly have several questions about your spouse's affair.

Solution The biggest question most people have about their spouse's affair is how it began. It is common for people to blame themselves for their spouse cheating on them. Understanding the origin of the affair can be crucial to determining why the affair occurred and absolving yourself of misplaced accountability.

This begs the question: how do most affairs begin?

What Are the Statistics of Infidelity?

Infidelity is a core fear for thousands of married people worldwide. Infidelity is often credited as the downfall of marriage and is frequently presented in drama shows as a common problem in relationships. Most people have taken the overblown perception of infidelity as fact and believe it is widespread across most marriages.

In reality, infidelity is not as common as popular media would have us believe. The statistics behind infidelity do not corroborate the overblown portrayal it receives in modern media and literature. Certain groups conducted the most recent research in the last 2 years. One of the main sources of information comes from research conducted by the LA Intelligence Detective Agency.

An Affair Between Coworkers

According to their statistics, between 30% and 60% of married couples will experience infidelity. Unfortunately, this statistic is up for debate since other sources show different rates of infidelity across the country. Other statistics are important to how infidelity in the country works, let alone the world. The biggest question is whether the wife or husband in a marriage is more likely to cheat than the other. Most statistics point to men being more likely to commit infidelity, while women have a significantly lower chance of cheating.

The most common statistic shows that 20% of men cheat while only 13% of women do, although this varies somewhat between studies. According to the LA Intelligence Detective Agency's study, 74% of men are willing to cheat if there is a guarantee they would never get caught. Conversely, 68% of women said the same thing when posed with the question. Nevertheless, infidelity is not so common that virtually every couple is at imminent risk of one spouse having an affair. The issue is figuring out when and where the affairs begin when the risk presents itself.

How Do Most Affairs Begin?

Affairs are often associated with cliché portrayals in popular media and television series that have the affairs starting in specific ways. While people are quick to dismiss these television dramas, the portrayals of affairs are cliché because they are common. The most common origin of an affair is portrayed as a workplace affair where your spouse forms an inappropriate connection with a co-worker.

This connection occurs because your spouse spends significant time with their co-workers and feels a "battlefield connection" with them. Additionally, when they come home to you, it is a return to familiarity that might no longer excite them. Most affairs begin with one member of the relationship seeking something new in their life and can find that excitement with one of their co-workers.

Coworkers Involved in an Affair

The chances of an affair originating in the workplace are remarkably high since it gives people access to potential partners with whom they have a common background. Having something in common with these people makes it easier to connect. This is why most research has determined that 85% of affairs are between your spouse and their co-worker. This statistic means that affairs are more common in the office than anywhere else. There are other potential origins for an affair that might explain where your spouse met their lover.

However, most affairs involve co-workers because it is easy to connect with the people with whom we work. This can cause concern for many people who believe their spouses are too close with their co-workers. This means you will have to confirm a few other telltale signs to confirm infidelity before you accuse your spouse of cheating on you. Nevertheless, there are examples of infidelity that confirm the rate of affairs in the workplace.

Examples of Infidelity

Infidelity is a major issue in several marriages, though the risk is not 100%, as we mentioned earlier. The fact remains that infidelity is a threat to any marriage, depending on the individuals involved in the union. Often, people rely on real-world examples of events to corroborate the risk to themselves.

Unfortunately, private information about people's marital status is not readily available since the couple's privacy is valued above our need for information. This privacy is important, but not every couple is afforded this luxury since many couples are part of the public sphere.

Therefore, there are examples of infidelity we can cite that can be powerful warnings about how infidelity can impact your life. Perhaps the most publicized and well-known examples of infidelity in United States history occurred at the highest levels of government. The situation began 28 years ago when former president Bill Clinton began his infamous extramarital relationship with Monica Lewinsky.

The Clinton-Lewinsky Scandal

Lewinsky was an intern at the White House who had caught the president's eye and engaged in a sexual relationship with him that ended in 1997. It is no secret that Clinton was married to Hilary Clinton at the time of the affair and willingly engaged in sexual relations with another woman. Initially, Clinton attempted to maintain his innocence and denied his relationship with Lewinsky, going so far as to end a televised broadcast with the quote, "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky."

Despite Clinton's vehement denial of his sexual relationship with Lewinsky, evidence began pouring in as officials looked into his misconduct. Eventually, the most compelling evidence came to light in the form of a blue dress Lewinsky had worn while performing oral sex on Clinton. The dress bore a semen stain linked to Clinton through DNA and Lewinsky took the dress to Linda Tripp, who published the evidence due to her hatred of Clinton and his administration.

Tripp manipulated Lewinsky into keeping the dress stained so she could preserve the evidence for her own means and ultimately succeeded in bringing Clinton's infidelity to light in the public sector, albeit at Lewinsky's expense. Furthermore, the dress provided irrefutable evidence that Clinton's public statement was a lie.

Clinton's affair with Lewinsky was significantly more important since he was the leader of our country and was flouting one of the main principles Americans held dear. Clinton's infidelity became so publicized that it led to a countrywide scandal that bore multiple names, including:

  • Monicagate
  • Lewinskygate
  • Tailgate
  • Sexgate
  • Zippergate

Despite the clever attempts to match the well-known "-gate" naming convention that the Watergate scandal created, Clinton's affair became a national issue. The investigation into Clinton's infidelity led to discoveries that led to charges of perjury that caused Clinton to be impeached. While Clinton was acquitted of these charges, the Senate trial lasted 21 days and sparked additional legal complications for Clinton.

While the average citizen does not usually consider the political ramifications of Clinton's lack of discretion, the Monicagate fiasco proves that infidelity can severely disrupt your marriage. Unfortunately, most couples who experience infidelity during the marriage are not likely to remain married once the affair is revealed.

Does Infidelity Lead to Divorce?

One of the biggest concerns a cheating spouse has is getting caught, primarily because they know they will face the wrath of their spouse. Others are more concerned about what follows when a marriage is exposed to major issues like infidelity. No one likes being cheated on, especially since it is almost definitive proof that you cannot trust your spouse anymore.

While some people genuinely regret their infidelity, others only regret getting caught and have no remorse for their behavior. Those who do not care that they betrayed the person they promised to love and cherish will almost certainly face divorce once the affair is revealed. Infidelity is one of the biggest causes of divorce in the country, possibly the world.

According to the American Psychological Association (APA), infidelity accounts for between 20% to 40% of divorces in the country. While this percentage might seem low, it accounts for a major portion of the divorce rates in America. The most recent data maintains that 50% of marriages in the country end in divorce, which is not an encouraging statistic for couples dealing with marital issues.

Person Filing For Divorce

However, infidelity is one of the driving forces behind the country's divorce rate because of the emotional and psychological damage such a betrayal can cause. This statistic is further corroborated by additional studies conducted by other agencies and organizations.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) conducted a separate study of divorced couples to determine what led to the divorce. Of the interviewed couples, 88% of the respondents cited infidelity as a major contributing factor. Most couples elaborated that only one partner cheated while the other remained loyal. The APA discovered that 42% of divorced individuals reported multiple affairs instead of a single transgression.

Finally, a study by Psychology Today determined that women are more likely to divorce their spouses than men. However, divorce has no direct impact on this statistic since women were likelier to initiate divorce for any cause rather than infidelity alone. Ultimately, infidelity is going to be a common cause for divorce because it is one of the most severe betrayals one can commit against their spouse.

Learn the Law

Infidelity can be heartbreaking since you likely committed to your marriage and expected it to last the rest of your life. Infidelity is an increasingly common issue as more people seek "excitement" by sleeping around. With 40% of couples dealing with infidelity, the phenomenon seems to be an inescapable risk of monogamy. This is not to say that infidelity is guaranteed to affect your relationship, but that more couples are dealing with the situation.

As a result of the uptick in infidelity, more people are brushing up on the signs that might indicate their spouse is having an affair. The rate of infidelity might be a big issue in modern marriage, but one of the bigger concerns people are facing is the risk of divorce because of infidelity.

A Divorce Lawyer

No one wants to deal with divorce court because it is one of the most vicious civil proceedings in modern society. Divorce requires intense negotiation and conflict with your spouse, which can inflict psychological and emotional damage. This damage is further exacerbated by the prospect of asset division, child custody, and support payments that radically change how you live your life.

The only advantage infidelity provides is that the victim of the infidelity is more likely to get divorce terms that favor them over the spouse who cheated. Unfortunately, that is usually a cold comfort since the end of your marriage is a worst-case scenario. When it comes to surviving divorce proceedings, one of the main tools is knowledge about certain situations you might encounter. We realize this is a difficult time for you, but we hope this article has been helpful.

If you're in need of any additional information about divorce or the divorce process, we highly urge you to peruse our collection of articles. With a vast selection of knowledge available to read at any time, you're bound to find some information useful to your situation.

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It's important to share the news to spread the truth. Most people won't.

Written By:
Michael Tierney

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