What is the extramarital affair?

You, I and rest of us all came into existence because of the evolutionary urge of human to re-create, grow and survive and be secure. Driven by passion love, two people from opposite gender come together and form a bond of commitment called marriage and in due course give birth to kids to carry forward the evolutionary journey. Sounds very simple, isn’t it? The need for commitment arises from the fact that women need care, safety, security during pregnancy and post-birth. The marriage is simply a social contract to live together and look after each other and strive for better health, wealth, and well-being of kids. Marriage is the beginning of the journey of re-creation with life long-commitment to build a system of sustenance. However, marriage is not just a physical union but union of ideas and emotions. This bond of togetherness helps one fight socio-economic, survival and growth, emotional and spiritual challenges of life in a better manner.

Marriage has thousands of advantages and it is one of the strongest links of the evolutionary chain. We all know and accept it as sacrosanct, but at the same time, we see numerous cases of a breach in trust and maneuverability beyond the commitment. In an ideal state, we want our parents to remain committed to each other for life long, but when it comes to self we look for the simplest possible opportunity to look beyond marriage. Why this urge for the extramarital affair?

Extramarital Affair in context of Me, Myself and Who

You know who you are and elements that make you what you are. That is “Me & Myself”. No one is complete, in one sense or other. As we grow we start knowing this reality of missing-elements and try to find those elements in people with whom we come in contact. That is what is “who”. This search for missing element culminates into life-long commitment in the form of marriage. As said, marriage is not just a union of body but ideas and emotions. The unfortunate reality of human life is that there is an element of dynamism in ideas and emotional needs which change with time and accordingly your search re-starts giving birth to an extramarital affair.

Lets us understand what is an extramarital affair?

Simply put, an extramarital affair is a kind of romantic or emotional relationship beyond the commitment of marriage for the fulfillment of your desires, which varies from person to person. It can be just an attraction for sexual pleasure or need for ideological and emotional connectedness.  The extramarital affair between two people, although they fail the durability test, is considered a betrayal of trust and cause unnecessary distress in a normal relationship.

  • Types of Affairs

Based on the trigger factor, an extramarital affair can be of several types. Most common types are:

  • Romantic

This is one of the most prevalent types of the extramarital affair as a third person enters in between and triangle forms. Depending on the strength or weakness of any of the tri-point, the relationship could be acute, obtuse or right-angled.  Reasons could vary, but the common factor is the involvement of the heart. There is a high chance that your romance could culminate into a sexual relationship; however, this is not the sole cause of romantic extramarital affairs.

  • Mechanical

This is the type of extramarital affairs are mechanical in nature, driven by a bodily desire for intimate sex with someone you know personally. However, in such cases, there is no formalization in terms of commitment or romance in a relationship.

  • Emotional

Once you grow and your married bond matures, the urge of external emotional support system arises.  Although it is friendly in nature as you feel a strong bond with your partner but in the long run, it takes a different shape. One factor in emotional extramarital affairs is the lack of sexual intimacy. In terms of impact, this has a deeper impact on your marriage life as sex is a temporary desire but emotional support is very regular desire.

  • Digital

With the arrival of internet added with personal devices, a new form of trigger came into existence. The long-distance relationship with the unknown is a new phenomenon. People term it as a virtual extramarital affair. Although it has no direct impact on your married life if practiced for a longer period of time, the virtual reality starts impacting your real life. The medium of the communication might vary but it is an emotional bond with the unknown that starts impacting your married life.

To make long-distance relationship work, read these tips from Psychology Today.

How to avoid Extramarital Affair

It is a fact that the urge for dynamism in ideas and emotions pushes you towards the exploration of relationship beyond the marriage. It is highly likely that if you come across an opportunity, you might incline towards that an opportunity. Accepting this fact of dynamism is the first possible action to avoid extramarital affairs from happening.

  • Happiness Index

It is the need for fun, joy, pleasure, and happiness that brings to people together. If your marriage life has too many stress factors that push happiness out from the window, it is the first push towards an extramarital affair. You cannot stop stress, it is a fact, but if you visualize it then you can definitely diffuse it by maintaining a healthy exchange of idea with your partner. Your partner’s urge to escape will dissipate slowly. The higher the score in the happiness index, the lower are the chances of an extramarital affair.

  • Resist Duplicity

It has been observed that if you are exposed to the extramarital relationship during your upbringing, it is likely that you will develop a level of acceptance of it. The memory induced cognitive justification comes into play. Knowing your memory is of great help, if you know the source of your mental manipulation then you can easily control it. You have to focus on the outcome, not short term pleasure.

  • Personality

You know yourself and your partner; at least you can claim so. If your partner values risk-taking and excitement over stability, then you have to understand his/her escapist urge for exploration. Excitement is a basic component of the relationship, but the level and frequency matters. You have to talk about it with your partner and remain flexible in trying new things to bring an element of excitement in your married life.

  • Emotional Proximity

One of the biggest reasons behind the extramarital relationship is an emotional vacuum that creates when you show emotional dissonance with your partner. Marriage is all about understanding, if that thing is missing, then chances of an extramarital affair are very high. You have to be open about discussing reasons behind increasing emotional gap and try to fill that gap with required fillers.

  • Conflict Avoidance

It is a very natural first safety mechanism of survival. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work well when it comes to a healthy marriage. Those who avoid conflicting situation are like to express less resulting in the mental blockage. This blockage pushes one towards another point of attraction. So, it is good to build a system to express opinion openly and avoid extramarital affair situation.

  • Prioritization

We all in the grip of hyper demanding modern life, where we somehow forget about simple things as we take things for granted. If this is the situation, you are creating a perfect case of extramarital affairs. The ball is in your court, if not at the top, then at least give relationship 2nd or 3rd position in the priority list. Spare some time and share your emotions with your partner, this works like wonder.

  • Openness

We all have some personal secrets that we want to keep hidden in the memory vault forever. There is nothing wrong with having those secrets. The challenge arises when you open yourself in good faith and it backfires. You have to be very calculative in measuring how much you want to open yourself.

  • Hot Head

Disagreements are a natural outcome of agreements. The health of your married life and the likely chance of extramarital affair depending on how you resolve your disagreements in the quickest possible time. One of the time tested mantra is listening, waiting and then responding. In simple words, optimum warmness helps you enjoy your relationship and the moment the heat increases beyond the limit the search for emotional support begins. So, learn the art of anger control and avoid the chances of an extramarital relationship. 

We marry to enjoy the beauty of life as it gives you everything that a normal human being wants. It gives you the beginning of a family, a life partner to be a teammate to face challenges together, the sense of purity of relationship, a perfect atmosphere for your kids to grow and most importantly the unconditional love.

But the unfortunate reality of modern life is that almost half of the marriage fails due to one factor or the other. One of the biggest factors is extramarital relationships, might be temporary or virtual, but it spoils the purity of married life. It is very natural to get tempted by the desire of dynamism and freshness in a relationship to find emotional or physical gratifications. We are in control of your destiny, so you have played smart with the total understanding of the dynamism of the relationship and make adjustments accordingly.