Who Cheats More: Men or Women? (2024 Infidelity Statistics)

by Ryan Hart | Updated on March 13, 2024 | Post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

This is the complete guide to adultery and infidelity statistics in the United States.

In this post I’ll reveal whether men or women cheat more, according to research.

Ready to learn more?

Let’s get started!

Man and woman hugging

Do Men or Women Cheat More?

Research shows that one gender is twice as likely to cheat than the other in a relationship. Can you guess which one?

If you said men, you’d be correct!

One study found that 20 percent of married men had cheated on their spouse at least once in their relationship, compared to only 13 percent of married women (IFStudies.org).

While the research is clear that men cheat more than women, it’s not fair to say that all men cheat.

There are many reasons for this difference in cheating behavior between men and women. For one thing, it could be said that men have more sexual opportunities than women because they tend to work outside the home, which gives them easier access to potential partners.

Studies also show that infidelity is more likely among couples with lower levels of satisfaction in their relationship.

Related: 19 Heartbreaking Signs He Doesn’t Love You Anymore

Top 10 Adultery Statistics

  • 20 percent of married men have cheated on their wives (IFStudies)
  • 13 percent of married women have cheated on their husbands (IFStudies)
  • 40 percent of adults that cheated on their spouse became divorced (IFStudies)
  • Over 60 percent of cheating women said their partners are more attractive than their lovers (Victoria Milan)
  • 89 percent of cheating women report that the man they’re cheating with makes them feel more appreciated than their significant other. (Victoria Milan)
  • Only 30 percent of cheating men said they have mistresses who are younger than their current partners (Victoria Milan)
  • 18 percent of Millennial participants engaged in sexual talk online with someone besides their partner (iFidelity)
  • 75 percent of adults believe an emotional relationship with another person is considered unfaithful behavior (iFidelity)
  • 24 percent of unmarried couples reported engaging in sexual talk online with someone besides their partner (iFidelity)
  • 75 percent of married Americans think marital infidelity is “always wrong” (iFidelity)

Gender Percentage of married adults that cheat based on gender: Men: 20% Women: 13%

Age Percentage of married adults that cheat based on age: 18-34 years old: 11% 35-64 years old: 17% 65+ years old: 18%

Religion Percentage of married adults that cheat based on religious service attendance: At least once a week: 14% Several times a month/year: 14% Once a year or less: 19%

What is Infidelity?

couple in bed

A study titled “iFidelity,” which investigated the connection between interactive technology and relationship faithfulness, defines infidelity as the act of a “married individual having engaged in physical sexual activity with someone other than their spouse, and without their spouses’ knowledge and consent."

However, research shows that most people believe infidelity begins well before a physical sexual act with another person.

Today, there are two main categories of infidelity. These include emotional and sexual infidelity.

When people have affairs, what are they after? One of the most common answers is that they are after sex, but research shows that is not the only reason.

People have affairs for many reasons. They are after good sex, sure, but also after approval, support, kindness, security, someone to talk to, someone to have a relationship with.

They are seeking out partners who seem more supportive than the ones they have. It is not so much that they want something new as that they want something different.

Do Cheaters Cheat Again?

There are many reasons why cheaters often cheat again in a relationship. One reason is that they may not have dealt with the underlying issues that caused them to cheat in the first place.

Another reason may be that they do not feel remorse or guilt for their actions and do not see anything wrong with cheating. Finally, they may believe that they can get away with cheating again and will not be caught.

People who are cheating often want to feel wanted, loved, and appreciated. When the person they’re cheating on doesn’t notice, it feels like nothing is wrong.

Proving that their partner doesn’t care about them can cause the cheater to continue cheating in order for them to be happy.

Do Relationships Work After Cheating?

The decision to stay together or not after cheating depends on the couple. Some couples may be able to work through the affair, but others may feel that the trust has been broken and decide to end the relationship.

It is said that, despite the many difficulties and pain, relationships can still work after cheating.

Some couples may be able to move past the betrayal and rebuild trust, while others may find that the damage is too great and decide to end the relationship. Ultimately, it depends on the couple and their individual circumstances.

How to Heal After Infidelity

There are many things that you can do to heal yourself and get back on track after your spouse has cheated. It’s important to find a way to separate yourself from the situation and jealousy.

Other steps that will help you recover include therapy, getting professional advice, talking with a trusted friend or family member, keeping busy with things that make you happy, focusing on what makes you feel good about yourself, and doing things that make your routine different.

Tips on how to heal after infidelity in a marriage:

  • Be kind to yourself and avoid self-judgment and self-criticism: give yourself the time and space you need to grieve and heal.
  • Be true to your needs: it’s important that your healing plan is focused on what you need, not just what someone else thinks you should want.
  • Find new ways to meet those needs: as you work on meeting those emotional, social, spiritual, and physical needs, make sure you find new ways of doing so rather than relying on the same old patterns again.
  • Consider some form of counseling or support group: some people find professional counseling helpful as they rebuild their lives post-infidelity.

What are Some Common Reasons that People Cheat on Their Partners?

Cheating, which includes extramarital sex and emotional infidelity, can happen for many different reasons. Sometimes people cheat because they feel bored or unfulfilled in their relationship. They may be looking for excitement or validation from someone else.

In other cases, people cheat because they feel neglected or unloved by their partner, and they are seeking emotional or physical comfort elsewhere.

Financial stress, lack of intimacy, and differing priorities can also contribute to infidelity. Furthermore, some individuals cheat because they simply don’t value monogamy or see it as a priority in a committed relationship.

Is Monogamy Realistic in Modern Society, or Do Our Natural Inclinations Make Cheating Inevitable?

Monogamy, which means having only one romantic partner at a time, is still possible in modern society. However, it is not always easy. With the rise of dating apps and online affairs, it can be tempting to seek out new connections outside of a committed relationship. Additionally, the normalization of casual sex can make it seem like sleeping around is more acceptable than being faithful to one person.

Despite these challenges, many people continue to prioritize monogamy in their relationships. They recognize that building a deep, meaningful connection with one person can be more rewarding than constantly pursuing superficial encounters with multiple partners.

It’s important to remember that cheating is not an inevitable part of human nature. While we may feel attracted to other people outside of our relationships, we can still choose to honor our commitments to our partners. By setting clear boundaries, communicating openly, and prioritizing mutual respect and trust, it is possible to maintain monogamy in modern society.


When you’re in a relationship, it’s important to be on the lookout for signs of cheating. Often times infidelity starts long before physical sexual contact with another person and can show up as emotional or mental distance from your partner.

If this happens, don’t ignore these subtle signals. Talk them over with your significant other so they know how you feel and why you are concerned about their behavior. It may not be too late to save your marriage or relationship!

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About the Author:
Ryan Hart

Ryan Hart is a certified relationship coach and writer. His mission is to help make connections between people better, stronger, more meaningful, and longer lasting using technology.

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