However, the situation is not very simple, as there is more than who signs the check into it. Factors such as age, relationship satisfaction, and education are important when it comes to dependency and infidelity. The study revealed the fact that the men who are dependent on their female partners from an economical point of view are five times more likely to cheat than the men who make their own money. On the other hand, it has been discovered that the women who make money than their husbands are more likely to cheat than the ones who make less than their husbands.
Christin Munsch, a sociology PhD candidate at Cornell University stated that men and women react in a different manner to the economical dependency. She will present her study at the American Sociological Association in Atlanta later this year. She stated that she did not want to say that all the men who make less money than their female partners will cheat; she simply wanted to prove that the money can lay a huge role when it comes to cheating, but in the case of the men, the factors are interesting.
The study collected data from heterosexual couples with ages between 18 and 28. They had to answer various questions related to their relationships, income, and other life factors. She collected the data from 2001 to 2007 and in order to determine if they cheated, she compared certain answers. First she looked if the person was still in the same relationship that he was the previous year, then she looked at how many sexual partners that person had in the past year, and then if that person had sex with strangers in that past year. If the person declared that he/she was still in the same relationship as the previous year, but if the person wrote that he had sex with multiple partners or with strangers in that past year that meant that the person cheated.
She said that the study was very conservative, as she could only catch the persons who were in a relationship for more than a year. If the relationship lasted six months, then the she would not have the possibility of catching the person as she would not have access to that information. She observed that cheating was rare, as 1.4 percent of women and 3.8 percent of men admitted that they were infidel. She is aware of the fact that the people might have hidden certain information, but she says that that is common in studies such as this one. Women were more likely to cheat as they started to make more money than their male partners. The situation with the men is different, as they were more likely to cheat if they were financially dependent on their female partners.
The men who made more money than the women, cheated as well but only if they made way more money than their female partners. The men who made 25 percent more than the women were the most faithful, as none of them cheated. The age, religious attendance, education level, income, and relationship satisfaction were all detrimental factors when it came to the infidelity. It has been proven that making more money will lead to more opportunities to cheat. The reason for this is the fact that the people who make more money work in most of the cases very much, which means that they are away from home more often.
In the case of the men who made less money than their female partners only some of these factors had importance. For example the men who make less money would stay in the relationship if they would be happy. When their happiness level decreases, they are more likely to cheat. Christin stated that the problem requires more investigation, as she does not know all the factors which should be taken in consideration.
She believes that there might be certain reasons why the men who make less money than their female partners feel the desire to cheat. The main reason for their behavior is the fact that they feel and know that they are not in control. They live with the assumption that since they are men, they need to be the providers; they need to take care of putting food on the table. Because the partner makes more money than him, he feels emasculated, and as a reason he decides to cheat in order to feel manly again. It is unlikely that money is involved in the other relationship, and as a result he does not have the same feelings associated with the affair.
The women who make less money than the men do not cheat because they do not feel that they should fight certain stereotypes. It is believed that many of them worry that they might not be able to support themselves if the relationship ends and as a result they do not cheat. The reason why the women who make more money than the men might cheat has to do with power and domination as well. They feel that they are in control when they shouldn’t be. They feel that the men should be the leaders and should be the dominant one in the relationship. Since the man is not financially potent, they will find different men who would be able to dominate them. That will make them feel that they do not need to worry about controlling the situation.
Everything has to do with psychology, and Stephanie believes that these are most likely the reasons why the men and the women cheat. The reason why the men who make 25 percent more than the women do not cheat is because they do not see a reason to do so.11