Indicators Of Marriage Fidelity
Are you likely to be unfaithful to your spouse? Researchers at the Florida State University investigated predictors of a long-lasting relationship by following 233 newly married couples for approximately three years. To test the likelihood of infidelity the researchers showed the participants photos of attractive persons of the opposite sex. They reported that the sooner someone looked away, the less likely he or she was to become unfaithful. Those who looked at the photos the longest were most likely to be unfaithful and their marriages were more likely to fail. The study also showed that younger couples and those less satisfied with their relationships were more likely to be unfaithful. The same held true for those who reported satisfaction with sex in their relationships, perhaps because they felt more positive about sex in general and would seek it out regardless of their commitment to their primary relationship. Other findings: less attractive women were more likely to have affairs, as were men whose partners were less attractive. Also, men in the study who had many short-term sexual relationships before marriage were more likely to be unfaithful afterward. The opposite was true of women.
James K. McNulty et al, “Attentional and evaluative biases help people maintain relationships by avoiding infidelity.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, February 12, 2018; DOI: 10.1037/pspi0000127
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