Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

Does Your Personality Make You Ripe for an Affair?

Ricky knew his behavior would probably ruin his marriage, but he continued in an on-line relationship with a woman he met in a chat room several months ago. Although Ricky represents a growing number of people who have affairs on-line, is there something about Ricky’s personality that makes him more susceptible to an affair?

The answer is YES!

*Researchers studied the personalities of of 214 newlyweds (107 couples) to see if there were traits that made them more likely to be unfaithful. They found that a person’s personality matters.


Specifically, spouses who have partners who are not agreeable and not dependable, have lower marital satisfaction that can lead to an affair. And these two characteristics also share another trait–impulsivity. The thinking is that the impulsivity then translates to sexual affairs. So if a partner is not reliable, not dependable and impulsive, the risk of acting out is higher when it comes to sexual encounters.

Additionally, the researchers wondered if highly impulsive partners do more to elicit sexual responses from other people.

So when you are looking for a mate, you might want to consider these aspects of his or her personality when dating. And if you are married to someone with these personality traits, it might help to work on these behaviors and boost marital satisfaction. And certainly, a person of strong faith always has the power of the Holy Spirit to help overcome any temptation.


*Shackelford, T. K., Besser, A. and Goeta. A. Personality, marital satisfaction and probability of marital infidelity, Journal of Individual Differences research, Vol, 6, No.1, pp. 13-25, 2008

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