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Just over half The rest of affairs occur with casual acquaintances. And on the question of who reports cheating more, the researchers—Lindsay Labrecque, a PhD psychology student, and Mark Whisman, a psychology professor at CU Boulder—say it is consistently reported more frequently by men, despite reports from the media and some clinicians that men and women engage in infidelity at similar rates. The researchers culled data from nine years of the General Social Surveyanalyzing responses from 13, people nationwide.
The two researchers found that about 21 percent of men and 13 percent of women reported infidelity at some point in their lifetime and that this gender difference has been consistent from to Labrecque adds that men are more likely than women to hold more favorable attitudes about extramarital sex.
Another gender difference: Among those who reported having extramarital sex in the past year, men were much more likely than women to have paid for—or to have received payment for—sex, at about 12 percent compared to just 1 percent.
Labrecque and Whisman say they wanted to shed more light on extramarital sex, especially about the identity of extramarital partners along with gender differences and attitudes.
A better understanding of all the issues related to extramarital sex may help improve treatment. The researchers say they also found that attitudes about extramarital sex are growing slightly more relaxed. And again, there were gender differences in these attitudes. Men were less likely to report that extramarital sex was always wrong. The research also showed that the of married people who reported ever having sex with someone other than their spouse decreased between andalbeit by a small percentage.
Specifically, lifetime prevalence of extramarital sex decreased from As for why people cheat, Whisman says prior experiences of extramarital sex, more permissive attitudes towards extramarital sex, and a greater acceptance of casual sex are all related to a greater likelihood of engaging in extramarital sex. Up next for Labrecque is more work on the topic—studying how, if at all, extramarital sex with different types of partners affects the duration of marriage. Subscribe to receive our weekly newsletter with the top news and stories from the College of Arts and Sciences! Subscribe Now.
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