1,500 study participants play Spot the Cheater
- Male philanderers faces give them away slightly more often than female faces do.
- Study tests idea of being able to spot competition as an evolutionary aid to protecting our relationships.
- The most reliable — though not very reliable — cue is sexual dimorphism.
Hasbro is releasing a Cheaters Edition Monopoly that encourages players to get ahead in any way they can.
What are the true motivations of people who cheat, and why do even happy spouses do it?
We all know what infidelity is, but a universal definition is difficult to carve out—especially in the digital age. Is watching porn cheating, or is it only cheating if the person on the other side of the screen is live? Each scenario is subjective, but psychotherapist Esther Perel crystalizes the three elements that lie at the heart of all cheating: secrecy, sexual alchemy, and emotion—even if the person don't think so. Cheating is typically interpreted as a symptom of a bad relationship or of something lacking in a partner, however one of the biggest revelations for Perel in researching her latest book, The State of Affairs, was that happy people also stray. Even people in satisfying relationships find themselves crossing the line they never thought they would. So what gives? "They often stray not because they want to find another person but because they want to reconnect with a different version of themselves," she says. "It isn’t so much that they want to leave the person that they are with as much as sometimes they want to leave the person that they have themselves become." Esther Perel is the author of The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity. See more at estherperel.com.
One reason: women perceive men with tattoos as more likely to cheat.
Most of us are aware that women, at least on some level, are attracted to the “bad boy." Evolutionary anthropologists tell us this is because a woman in the Stone Age competed for the attention of a male who could protect her and their young, and provide for them. Today however, society has changed. And in fact, many times it is the sociable and intellectual male who turns out to be the best provider, while those who are aggressive, rebellious, and uncompromising, often have a tougher time. Many women date the rebellious archetype in their teen or young adult years, usually thinking they can change him, only to end up with a broken heart. According to this new study, that experience might be a steep learning curve.
How open are you to your partner having sex with other people? The answer may depend on your age.