I feel like when it comes to cheating, the general consensus is that men are the major perpetrators. That’s why I’m not so sure that a recent study that claims that women are actually being more unfaithful than men these days. I’m even more skeptical since the research focuses on millennial women, and its findings are the complete opposite of what I’ve witnessed myself in the dating world.
The numbers are still pretty low.
The study, published in the Institute for Family Studies and titled “Who Cheats More? The Demographics of Infidelity in America,” says that a lot of female millennials have slept with a guy who isn’t their partner. But the numbers don’t seem to be that huge. While 10% of the men surveyed between the ages of 18 and 29 said that they’ve cheated, 11% of the women of that age group said that they’d been unfaithful. Is that really such a big number? It’s not like 80% or even 50% of the millennial women admitted to hooking up with someone else.
Millennial women are apparently the only cheaters.
What’s interesting about this study is that millennial women are the only age group that cheats more than men. The numbers are much different for every other generation. What does that say? That millennial women don’t believe in love and loyalty and commitment? That’s impossible for me to believe.
Millennial dating trends say something totally different.
If we look at the way that we’re dating these days, it seems pretty obvious that if we’re going to hook up, we’re going to do that without even getting into a relationship in the first place. After all, we’re the hookup generation that supposedly loves being casual and using dating apps instead of settling down. If that’s the case, then why would we be more likely to cheat on our partners than men are?
Millennials are getting married later in life, if at all.
We’re not even getting married as young as other generations, and some us might never wear a ring on that finger. It’s not because we can’t find a husband, it’s because we’re living amazing, independent lives and we might not be interested in marriage. Or, maybe we’re just waiting for the right guy who’s actually husband material, which is totally legit too. If we’re walking down the aisle less than previous generations, why would be more likely than guys to cheat? It just doesn’t make any sense.
The data still shows that men are the cheaters.
As Wendy Wang, director of research at the Institute for Family Studies, writes, “Trend data going back to the 1990s suggests that men have always been more likely than women to cheat. Even so, older men were no more likely to cheat than their younger peers in the past.” Since it’s clear that men are basically still more likely than women to cheat, and it doesn’t matter how old or young they are, that seems to matter more than this particular finding.
Anecdotal evidence means something here too.
There are countless rom-coms that are about a woman walking into her bedroom and literally finding her boyfriend or husband in bed with someone else. And it seems like the majority of affairs take place because a guy isn’t sleeping with his girlfriend or wife anymore and, well, he wants to have sex. Since men have more of a cheating rep than women do, it’s just impossible to grasp the idea that millennial women are cheating more than millennial men.
There are other factors to think about.
The study talks about other demographical factors that contribute to cheating like your parents’ relationship, your political affiliation, and your religious beliefs. It seems to me like those things would matter a lot more and tell the story of whether or not you would cheat rather than your gender.
I feel like women would just leave instead of cheating.
Of course I totally get that there are reasons why people cheat, like not feeling like you’re loved and appreciated or wanting to feel wanted even for just a short while. Still, I truly believe that most women would break up with their boyfriends instead of cheating on them. It just seems like having an affair is so messy and we’re programmed to be loyal and caring (it’s the whole nurturing thing). And, besides, tons of millennial women are staying single and choosing to be without a partner, so it seems like that’s a bigger trend than cheating.
Maybe I just want to believe it can’t possibly be true.
OK, I’ll admit it: I’ve recently become more of a romantic after finding love after a decade of being single AF, so I really don’t want to believe that women my age would cheat on their partners. It just breaks my heart to even think about it. I know it happens, but since the percentage is still so low, I’m just going to pretend it doesn’t happen at all.
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