It may not have to do with their relationship.
We know people cheat. That is not something we can argue. But we don’t always know why.
A recent talk by practicing psychotherapist. Esther Perel on TEDTalks suggests that up to 76 per cent of people in a relationship cheat in some form. It’s a shocking number, but it’s real.
And while I can feel the heat of the steam coming out of your ears if you’e someone who has been cheated on, you need to hear Perel’s theory on why people (happy people) cheat. Hint: It isn’t because of you. And if you’re someone to who has cheated – you really need to tune in.
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The main point of Perel’s talk is explaining about how cheating can actually have more to do with the person cheating than on their relationship or their partner. It isn’t about whether they are fulfilled or unfulfilled in a relationship, it’s about their personal stability.
“When we seek the gaze of another, it isn’t always our partner that we are turning away from, but the person that we have ourselves become,” Perel says in the TED Talk. “And it isn’t so much as we are looking for another person as much as we are looking for another self.”
Sometimes infidelity comes after a horrible incident in someone’s life, or it is a way for them to deal with the negatives going on in their own life.
“Death and mortality often live in the shadow of an affair, because they raise the question: Is this it? Is there more? Am I going on for another 25 years like this? Will I ever feel that thing again?” she says on TED.
“Perhaps these questions have propelled people to cross the line.”
Perel's talk is in no way an explanation for all infidelity, or for all couples who break down due to a partner being unfaithful. It does however open a window to a new perspective on why people cheat.
It opens up the view that people don't cheat because of a negative view of their partner - but because of a negative inner view of their self, or their life.
It may not be a complete answer to why all people cheat, but it is solid fuel for thought.
What do you think about the idea of cheating because of personal issues?
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