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  • Dean Smith

Cheating Statistics from a Global Perspective

The approach and attitudes we express regarding infidelity varies widely, especially when we take that consideration to a global scale. Thanks to Rebel Circus, we included their list of crazy infidelity statistics and facts from around the globe below:

1. Only 37 percent of the French population is morally opposed to cheating. That means that an actual majority is perfectly fine with infidelity. 63 percent are forgiving of spouses who do cheat. The French are laid back, no?

2. The most unfaithful country on the face of the planet? Thailand. 56 percent of Thai nationals have cheated. This is deeply ingrained in their culture, as many Thai men have full blown “second wives.” The market for sex work in Thailand may greatly contribute to the numbers as well, as sex is readily available to all Thai people.

3. What words do people around the globe use to describe what we call “cheating”? According to Rebel Circus, cheating is mostly an American term, while other countries have softer, less heavy names for side relationships. Finnish people call cheating “parallel relationships,” while Nigerians call it “sexual networking.” France has a mouthful for cheating, referring to it as “simultaneous multi-partnerships.”

4. It is more socially acceptable for men to cheat (shocker). For example, Russian women reported widely that they all date married men, despite the fact that they’re single. This may be because there’s less hate toward unfaithful men, though Russian women do outnumber Russian males.

5. Definitions vary widely. The statistics are hard to read accurately, because cheating is a broad term. The opinions on what constitute cheating varies globally. Many countries consider only intercourse cheating, while Americans are more strict with their definitions. Emotional cheating is very real to some people, while others wouldn’t even consider that to be a legitimate thing. One South African poll claimed men who cheat while drunk don’t quite count as cheaters.

6. Americans have the most negative attitude toward infidelity. 84% of Americans think that cheating is morally unacceptable. This puts Americans behind 26 other countries for their lenience on infidelity. This could explain why the language in America for cheating is far more negative than in other countries.

7. Men don’t necessarily cheat more than women. Researchers believe that women may cheat just as much as men, but are less likely to admit it. This is because of the gender norms and rules put forth by societies all over the globe. Women are more likely to be shamed and chastised for sexual behavior of any nature, and are often thought to be their husband’s property.

8. Men and women cheat differently. According to the Kinsey Institute, men and women are globally likely to cheat for completely different reasons. Men are more likely to cheat spontaneously as a one-time thing. Women are more likely to carry emotions with cheating and do it in accordance with what they feel like they’re lacking in their own relationship.

9. There are many missing pieces in research, as it can’t be conducted in many countries. The statistics could be inaccurate and they’re definitely under collected. Many countries use strict discretion when it comes to relationship and sexual matters and any data (if collected at all) would be kept quiet.

10. Global attitude varies. The main point that research has identified is that the attitude toward cheating varies greatly from place to place. This has a lot to do with the way societies see gender and how open they are about sexuality in general.

11. What countries are strictest when it comes to cheating? Palestine, Turkey, Indonesia and Jordan are among the strictest who think cheating is morally wrong. This could have a lot to do with strict religious laws and opinions in their countries.

12. Misogyny and cheating. One overwhelming theme is that cheating is more culturally acceptable for men. Women are less likely to cheat, or possibly just less likely to admit to cheating. This is because a married woman who cheats is far more stigmatized than her husband in most places.

13. Monogamy globally. Opinions on monogamy also come into play in these statistics. Many countries put a much bigger emphasis on monogamy than others. The US, though a developed nation, is significantly behind the rest of the world with their views of monogamy. This is mainly what contributes to their strict views on cheating.

14. Money and infidelity. Studies also reveal that in countries where the wage gap between men and women is smaller, the closer the statistics are for how often each gender cheats. This is because the financial statistics closely represent how progressive the country is with their women’s rights and views on women in society.

15. The obsession with cheating. One thing is for certain – the world has an obsession with infidelity. It’s a recurring theme in global music, art and literature. Where there are relationships, there will be cheating, and that happens to be everywhere. The only thing that differs is our approach to monogamous relationships and our opinions as a whole on infidelity.

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