Infidelity is a manifestation of human behavior whose term is more commonly used in the field of love relationships, which consists of deceiving one or more people with respect to keeping vows of emotional and carnal fidelity . Infidelity situations can be bidirectional (both members of a couple) and group (individuals in a simultaneous love relationship with several people, in a situation of bigamy or not.

Infidelity is then basically synonymous with adultery. It is a deception, a manifestation of falsehood , mediated by subjective and sociocultural factors, difficult to apprehend in a few lines. Understanding the phenomenon of infidelity in love relationships from a more or less consistent perspective leads to somewhat difficult paths to tackle.

In advance, infidelity is a general phenomenon , which does not distinguish genders. You will not fall here in the appreciation that adultery is only perpetrated by men. Rather, it could be thought that it is a matter of perception that tends to be shifting when different cultural communities are observed.


What does infidelity mean?

The basic problem is to understand that infidelity, like any other deception, is a lack of trust and commitment that the establishment of a love relationship supposes. It is only possible to speak of infidelity when exclusive vows have been promised in love and carnal relationships.

It is obvious that love and commitment play an essential role in the functioning and preservation of a couple relationship, even when the participation of a third person is agreed upon. In fact, how to talk about infidelity or adultery in societies where multiple marriage is legal and the wives agree to live in the same house.

But, leaving aside the diversity in the constitution of couples, a quite controversial issue, what seems to be out of the question is the value given to fidelity in promoting closeness and intimacy in a love relationship. Always making the exception that these values ​​are protected by a type of society, in a particular socio-cultural context. Fidelity as a counterpart to infidelity favors the functioning of marital ties and the perception of satisfaction in each of its members.

Thus, infidelity constitutes a lack of commitment, which is considered an intrinsic pillar of real emotional ties. Commitment is an indicator of the likelihood that the love relationship will last and remain. It is for sure the index of the psychological bond that one person shows and feels towards another. The commitment and desire determines the direction that the link persists over time.

Loyalty to the loved one is a value that can serve as an indicator that there is a real commitment and intention that the relationship last. Fidelity is the reward obtained, which only makes sense when it is mutual. 

Love relationships are processes of social construction that constitute the mutual involvement of their actors, according to the notion of interdependence. Infidelity directly hurts the fabric of that construction, when commitment implies absolute fidelity. At this point, it can be said that infidelity implies socioculturally the breaking of a pact, so much so that adultery is considered a cause for civil divorce in many countries.

And not only are there regulations that define adultery as a breach of the marriage contract, but infidelity is, in the most human aspect, the betrayal of all those positive psychological forces that stimulate the execution of actions (behaviors) towards a person or a bond in expressions such as love, communication, accompaniment, support, emotional safeguard and agreement.

Triggers for infidelity

When a person is unfaithful it is because within himself there has been a change in the level of satisfaction with the bond, love and commitment and, consequently, a deterioration in his level of sexual satisfaction, or vice versa. It could be said that the high degrees of sexual satisfaction in the first years of a marital relationship would also reflect high levels of satisfaction with the union, love and commitment.

After the bursts of overflowing passion, which usually occurs later in the years of a relationship, the chances of infidelity of one or both parties increase. In fact, infidelity is less likely to appear at the beginning of a passionate love affair , when the parties act in good faith.

In the attempt to understand why cases of infidelity occur, even though in the beginning romantic love was a primary component, which stimulated the strengthening of the relationship, it could be inferred that there are different components . Here are a few:

  1. The degree of expectations of the couple , where the contextual factor intervenes. The deterioration of moral values ​​and basic principles of coexistence can also interfere in the lightening of the notion of commitment and mutual respect. Well, there will always be the option for either party to express their desire for separation, before being unfaithful.
  2. The level of emotional maturity. Although age can lead to less experience and self-knowledge, emotional immaturity can also manifest itself in people over thirty years of age.
  3. If it is agreed that love relationships are processes under construction , infidelity could be one of the consequences that the bond, understood as working as a couple, did not pass the first stages of the construction of its foundations.
  4. It is a certainty that commitment is one of the skills that couples must develop in co-participation. In an ideal state, commitment is strengthened when it manifests itself in mutual and personal care in favor of the love relationship.

In the absence of the gradual and mutual strengthening of the relationship and its transformation into better models of rapport and coexistence , life as a couple loses its compass. At worst, it ends in separation for infidelity and neglect.

5. In point (a) of these factors the contextual component was mentioned . It is also a factor of no minor importance. The notion of “machismo” in phallo-centric societies and the roles assigned to genders is a highly debated topic in digital media.

Machismo (its counterpart, feminism ) is a kind of subculture, which deals with a supposed superiority of men over women. Beyond the equal rights between genders that are dictated by laws in western states, machismo manifests itself in various asymmetries.

One of these asymmetries is expressed in the way in which families raise their sons, on the one hand, and daughters, on the other. Although it is a broad topic, the main question here lies in the importance of this subculture in shaping the behaviors of future adults.

The following example is a typical and perhaps extreme case, but it illustrates the point: men (popularly understood as macho, although psychology with scientific criteria warns of dysfunctional problems in behavior), considered narcissistic, arrogant and selfish , blame their partner for negative situations that occur in the relationship.

In addition, the idea of ​​the couple’s bond is adapted to their supposed preponderance and exceptionality , so that they see their wife, their marital situation, as something oppressive, which prevents their talent and their desire to break through.

Finally, the next step is infidelity and promiscuity . For her part, the woman, involved in a situation of emotional dependence (dysfunctional), assumes the belief system (often imposed from her upbringing), in order to preserve the couple’s relationship and as a defense system to contain suffering.

 | Website

Alexa Clark specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She has experience in listening and welcoming in Individual Therapy and Couples Therapy. It meets demands such as generalized anxiety, professional, love and family conflicts, stress, depression, sexual dysfunction, grief, and adolescents from 15 years of age. Over the years, She felt the need to conduct the psychotherapy sessions with subtlety since She understands that the psychologist acts as a facilitator of self-understanding and self-acceptance, valuing each person's respect, uniqueness, and acceptance.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *