Monday, March 11, 2013

Infidelity: A Man and a woman's perception

Infidelity, as per the dictionary, is defined as being unfaithful to one's partner. Earlier seen primarily as physical, it occurred when a spouse/partner indulged in physical intimacy with another person outside the marriage. In the recent times however, with changes in lifestyle, attitude and dynamics of relationships/marriages, even emotional intimacy with someone outside the marriage has come to be defined as infidelity.

Physical infidelity may mean a string of one night stands with strangers, or having an arrangement with few/one person purely for sexual purposes. There is little or no emotional involvement. Emotional infidelity on the other hand, typically means redirecting love, time, attention to someone other than the partner, with minimal or no physical involvement.

Question is: which one is worse? Is there a right answer to this? Truth be told, infidelity is infidelity and either type would typically hurt someone. Which one would hurt more, depends a lot on the person in question. However, if one may be allowed to generalise, as my friend Anika once very lucidly remarked: men find it more difficult to deal with physical infidelity; and women, emotional infidelity.

I found that to make a lot of sense. Since time immemorial men have considered women to be some sort of their 'property'. These days especially with stressful work and hectic lives, it is usually not possible for people to spend quality time with each other. Men's EQ is usually perceived to be lower than women's in any case. On top of that with equality coming into picture, men today dont mind their partners being friends with guys. Even of they know the two are emotionally close etc. But all hell breaks loose, even for the most understanding of the guys, when they find out that their partner SLEPT with someone. That's a breach of trust that cannot be repaired. And thus men find it more difficult to forgive a physical affair.

Women on the other hand, again from time immemorial, have been very perceptive about men's sexual appetites and their roving eye. Many a woman, especially in the glamour/media etc industry, have overlooked their partners escapades with their colleagues, as long they come back home to them, treat them and their kids well, maintain a respectable life in the eyes of the world. Even if I think of myself, I would probably come around my husband having a one night stand: it can happen to anyone in the heat of the moment and doesnt mean anything. BUT: if the partner becomes emotionally connected with another woman, falls in love and starts spending time and attention on her over his partner, then its unacceptable to the woman in question. Sexual attraction is temporary, but emotional bonding is permanent. And even if she shares his body, a woman cannot share her man's love with anyone else.

That said, I'm pretty sure either case of infidelity discovered by either partner will be a messy affair, so best to either stay away, or if you must, be very intelligent! :P

1 comment:

Himanshu Nagpal said...

Hahaha... Loved your last line :P