The culture of cheating in relationships: Questions that need answers
Cheating is becoming a readily-allowed culture world over.
So, how would one say this ‘cheating culture’ started?
I believe it all started in the movies.
I mean, we have all seen at least one movie where a man cheats because he has gotten bored of his 15-year-marriage, and his secretary is a refreshing person to look at.
The wife threatens to leave and cautions the husband not to do it again, but he does it again and again.
However, the woman decides to stay in the relationship ‘for the sake of the children’, she says.
I don’t think I have ever seen a movie where a woman or man leaves their partner for cheating. It’s always maybe a 3-month break-up and then the man or woman goes back to apologise and things are all back to being rosy in the relationship.
This phenomenon has been so widely accepted that countries have come up with other names for it, for example, in Nigeria it is called sexual networking, the french call it simultaneous multi-partnerships, the Finnish call it parallel relationships while in America it remains just cheating.
Some people do not even consider some circumstances as cheating, for example, sex between two females may be seen as exploring and just playful while sex cheating between people of different genders will be seen as cheating. Also, some people may also consider sex with a prostitute as just business and not cheating.
But what is cheating? I would define it as stepping out of a relationship either emotionally, physically or mentally, so it does not matter the consequences or the circumstances of the cheating situation.
Today morning, while I was in the bus headed to Nairobi town centre, I listened to a conversation on radio about a woman who claimed her husband has never cheated.
People called in laughing at the fact that the woman believed that her husband never stepped out of their marriage. Some people said that the woman was in denial, while others said, bluntly, that everybody cheats and that people should start accepting it.
I then started thinking about it, is it true? Does everybody cheat? Especially people in committed relationships and marriage?
I think it all starts in the mind. Someone does not just wake up in the morning and cheat, they must have thought about it.
And even though cheating is ‘accepted’, why is it more-allowed for men than women?
When a woman cheats, she is given a bad name in the society, but when a man cheats, no one flinches.
But all is fair in the world, they say.