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What are the Compelling Reasons behind an Extra Marital Affair?

by Rajesh Gotan


xtra Marital Affair is not uncommon across the globe.

Extra Martial Affairs started when constitution of Marriage started”.

They happen regardless of geographies, culture, gender and socioeconomic background. 

The can come as a shock to partner and play havoc in the life turning everything upside down in the life ahead. All plans and future goals that the couple lived together bite the dust.  

When things seem to be going fine, one wonders – what went wrong? 

Below are some potential reasons for extra marital affairs.

Marrying in Early 20’s 

In early 20’s, very rarely people are financially stable. When they marry during this age, the increase in responsibilities drive them to focus on earning and getting settled.  

They miss on the enjoyment that is expected out of marriage. 

In early or middle thirties, they acquire some financial and social stability. That is when they feel they missed out on excitement during all the years after marriage. Their mind tells them to venture out for some thrill and excitement and they end up indulging in an extra marital affair.

Marrying Under Pressure 

In some cultures and geographies, family and society put a lot of pressure for marriage. They consider it one of the key milestone for the happy life. In some cases, people get married without even knowing their partner. 

After marriage only they are able to figure out that they have made a mistake in terms of the choice of the partner. 

They always carry this thing in mind and the moment they meet someone who is a better match than their partner, they get attracted to him/her. 

In many cases, it starts as a friendship but it turns into an affair.

Lack of Physical Satisfaction

For a marriage to work in long run, physical satisfaction is very important. It is true for both men and women. The lack of physical compatibility and dissatisfaction is one of the most common reasons to get involved into and extra marital affair.

Not Able to Cope Up with the Changes

Life is random and full of surprises. Most of the people are able to deal with the small changes, however, there are big changes like death of a loved one, sudden financial loss, loss of job, serious illness etc., which people are not able to deal with. In such events, people are likely to approach other people, aside from their spouses to deal with such changes. It is comforting for them to find themselves in the arms of someone new who is not connected to their past or the tough circumstances in any way. It gives them a big psychological relief.

Emotional Disengagement

It is very important for couples to build a perpetual emotional connect – it should not be one of the events occasionally, it has to be there always. Amidst the high and lows, the couples need to talk, share, laugh, express, listen, care, empathize – the communication bridge should be open always.

If you do not do it, over a period of time you find yourselves as strangers who are living together without any emotional engagement. As a result of the need to be emotionally connected, you start looking out for someone else, which can lead to an extramarital affair.

“Cheating and lying aren’t struggles, they’re reasons to break up.”
Patti Callahan Henry

Mismatch of Life Priorities

Initially the joy of marriage and togetherness weighs over everything. As couples spend time together, they become clear and with time the priorities start to become clear, which may not converge. As the time passes, these priorities become pronounced and the mismatch of these makes it very difficult to live together as the differences even on basic things prevail all the time. One may have a healthy simple life as a priority, the other may have career advancement and material things as a priority. The mismatch of life priorities is a major trigger for an extra marital affair. 


Before becoming parents, the husband and wife prioritize each other over other things. Becoming a parent changes everything between husband and wife. They are not able to give time to each other and everything in the living environment undergoes a drastic change. While mothers give their all to the child, the men feel neglected, unimportant and lost at home.  This makes men to look outside and they indulge in extramarital affair. Women become so busy becoming a mother that they do not get a clue of it for a long time.

Mismatch of Core Values

When the life is going easy, the Core Values do not get tested. However, during tough times, the core values come to test.  There are tough decisions required to be taken. Which may not digestible to your partner. This could lead to differences that cannot be reconciled, leading to an extra marital affair.

Different Interests and Hobbies

Birds of a feather flock together– this holds true for friendship as well as companionship.

If you have nothing common between each other, eventually you will end up pursuing your own interests. You will find no reason to spend time with each other. You will always crave for the person with who you have common interests. Your core will drive you to get opportunities outside and many times this leads to an extra marital affair.     

Career Progression

It’s not uncommon for people to get into an extramarital affair given the prospect of career. It could be a boss who promises promotion or a prospective employer offering better career.


Sometimes, it is the want of extra spice, excitement and fun to change the monotonous life that leads to extra marital affair. It the feeling of sheer boredom and drudgery of everyday life that drives one to take such a step.

Personal Financial Needs

If one is suffering with personal liabilities and loans, wish to have a lavish lifestyle or there is lack of agreement on personal financial management, this could lead to constant bickering between the couples.  During such a vulnerable time, anyone who gives a financial help or gives a hearing to your woes is welcomed which often leads to an extra marital affair.   

It is very tough for a couple going through the stress of an extra marital affair. The other associated relationships are broken and children face the trauma. An extra martial affair could leave a lifelong effect on many lives with the feeling of resentment, guilt, anger and betrayal. It is not at all an easy situation for anyone.

Above are some of the key reasons driving people into extra marital affair, there could be other reasons as well. Usually there is no single reason but a combination that leads to an extra marital affair.

What are your thoughts on it? We prompt you to think about other reasons as well.

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