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March 19, 2013

Women and Cheating: Part 2

To understand the why of the affair does NOT condone the behavior. It does, however, promote the opportunity to heal from the wounds that may be underlying the behavior. To judge the behavior and not ask why is to further shame a person who is needing to be heard in some way. What if the affair behavior is coming from a deep wound? Is it the same behavior as someone who is angry and lashing out at their significant other? No. While there are a myriad of possible answers to the why, this article will address the subordinate position of the woman in a patriarchal society, residual anger, and perceived lack of power. I welcome any and all of your thoughts.

 

As I mentioned, over the ages, women have been shamed, demeaned, and destroyed. They were shamed for speaking their mind and for even having their own thoughts, wants, needs or ideas! They have continued to be kept or portrayed in a subordinate position. Girls continue to be socialized around the “look pretty, be dependent” message, e.g., broadcast media and Hollywood. Even if a woman is a heroine in a film she is sexually presented. Women appear to feel, and identify with, the subtle (and not so subtle) oppression. With that comes a deep need to free her Self from the internal bondage she feels from society and it’s judgment. This is a patriarchal society. Women as a whole are growing into strong leadership positions. Yet still feel the impact of the social limitations. It isn’t “cool” to be a strong, intelligent woman in a business suit. It is cool to be a strong, intelligent woman in a short skirt and high heels! Unfortunately, more often than not, others will notice ONLY her attire in an unspoken need to sexualize her. So, at some level is it possible that women are “trying” to master this feeling of being a sexual object by standing in the oppressors’ shoes and sexualizing men as objects?

 

Another possible hidden (or not so hidden) expression is that of anger — anger at men for various reasons OR anger at themselves for not being “strong enough” to withstand manipulations/controls by society and/or men. There are quite a few perceived double binds for women in society and in business. One is that she cannot be aggressive and go against that which is going against her and yet she cannot be passive and accepting of the aggression. There is so much more I could address in this area but not in this blog. It is this anger, which women are not encouraged to express, that can be a part of their using men for sexual satisfaction or cheating on their partners.

 

While a woman may be fighting to attain a position of power through her sexual encounters, she rarely leaves those situations/experiences with a feeling of empowerment but rather defeat, guilt, or shame. A woman’s body must open to receive. Each time she receives sexually from an encounter that is not loving she feels the impression. Therefore, If the current relationship is not fulfilling and she finds herself being attended to or honored by another, she is more likely to open herself to the Other. In general, it is important for a woman to feel emotional and physical acceptance in order to stay connected in her romantic relationship.Without that connection she is left sexually vulnerable and tends to pull back thereby leaving her in need. In other words, the more open and safe a woman feels the more likely she is to feel sexual because of the way women are socialized as well as the female energy by which they are dominated.

 

Given these changing times for women and society, it is a sad but real trend that women are more apt to have affairs. The three possible answers to why are far from comprehensive. I would love to hear any of your thoughts. If you have been tempted or acted upon the temptation to cheat — why?

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