A Bit On The Side

I was researching divorce and extra marital affair rates and, naturally, that involved some statistics… I’m not entirely sure exactly what I discovered, except to confirm what I already believed – that statistics is probably the most useless and unreliable science on the planet.

When talking about divorce, it’s estimated that the rate is approximately 50%, or heading that way, but I came across this gem on divorcerate.org: “Sociologists believe that childlessness is also a common cause of divorce. The absence of children leads to loneliness and weariness and even in the United States, at least 66 per cent of all divorced couples are childless.” Now there are two pieces of information there… sociologists’ beliefs and the proportion of divorced couples who don’t have kids, but how in hell are  the two linked in any way, shape or form? I can only think of one likely way straight off: it’s one hell of a lot easier to split if you don’t have offspring to consider! I suppose the other possible connection might be that the couples so disliked each other that they never had sex anyway, but how would you prove that?

The really interesting information, though, was related to the figures bandied about for the proportion of married partners who admitted they’ve had an extra marital relationship. My conclusion regarding that was that it depends who you ask, how you ask and probably when…

The figures I came across from different sources ranged from 22% of men and 14% of women admitting to having affairs, to another estimate of an average of 53% across the board, although it was thought that the rate is slightly higher for men than women… and then I spotted this: “90% of Americans think that adultery is morally wrong and 35% think it should be a crime!”

If you analyse that, assuming that all of the 10% who aren’t bothered about the subject are having affairs, does it not appear that something like 12%-41% of Americans think that what they’re doing is morally wrong and probably something over 20% think they themselves should be flung in jail for what they’re doing anyway – duh!

One statement did contain an element of realism though: “The fact is that human beings are NOT monogamous by nature. That means they cheat!”  That, I agree with, but I wonder if the source isn’t just a tad suspect – it purports to be a quotation from a survey undertaken by Playboy Magazine.


Anyway, all I can say is that it’s only sex anyway, so what’s all the goddamn fuss about for heaven’s sake? It’s about the only thing the flaming government hasn’t figured out a way to tax – yet!


4 Responses to “A Bit On The Side”

  1. This is a fascinating post and touches on something I am writing about for my next post (so I will link to your post). I was on a site last week and this blogger wrote in capital letters. I HATE ANYONE THAT STEALS OTHER WOMEN’S HUSBANDS! I thought the days of the scarlett woman were long gone but clearly not. No-one can stel anyone else away from anyone else – its impossible! That is what I am going to be discussing.

    Also, I think these extral marital affairs stats are not high enough. I have read thats its mroe likely 70% of married men having affairs and women are catching up. I dont care what people do but as long as they are open in their relationships and both parties know whats going on. Its the people leading double lives, hiding their extracurricular activites that does my head in. I hate liars and cowards and do not believe there is any excuse.

    As for the childless couples – I think children keep couples together often. People often put their own needs on hold for the sake of the kids. Without kids I bet a lot of people would divorce quicker. How often do you see couples splitting up after being married for 20, 25, 30 years? After their kids are all grown and settled and they finally realise they have nothing in common but their children. Sad waste of a life really isnt it?

    But we shouldnt lose sight of the many hundreds of thousands that have fantastic relationships, open or not and defy all the stats and other data.

    Lilly xx

    • Yes, I’ll go along with most of that and remember the stats are for those who ADMIT to having affairs. No, husbands – like wives – are not possessions, so you can hardly steal them, can you?

      I think you’re quite right that children keep some married couples together, but I seriously doubt that’s a good thing for anyone concerned – in fact it’s often no more than a financial essential.

      Where we disagree a bit is the honesty thing: in THEORY and out of respect for your partner, I agree completely, but I think we (conventional society) make ridiculous demands on individuals in relationships and I think most couples who “stray” only find that out somewhat down the line. I could take up several posts, let alone this reply, with discussing that.

      If no one expected fidelity – ever – from the beginning then I’d like to suggest that thousands – millions – of otherwise perfectly good and, in every other respect happy, marriages would work fine. Some would go the other way, but I think they were probably destined for the trash can anyway. It’s just a point of view and nothing is that simple.

      G says love you, by the way xx

  2. girl du jour Says:

    It’s getting through all of life’s ups and downs and the good, the bad and the ugly that makes a relationship strong.

    Young people don’t realize this. They think it’s all about looking good. Then they realize that being with someone day after day after day can be a bit suffocating if you don’t communicate and keep things interesting.

    To stay monogamous is a commitment that you make to the relationship, your partner and yourself.

    We are animals and our urges aren’t planned but they certainly are normal and natural. Controlling our urges is what separates us from the rest of those lovely creatures that just boink their brains out. 🙂

    • I agree completely. On the other hand, maybe the other lovely creatures have the right idea – keep it simple whenever you can and enjoy what’s offered. 😉

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