Why Happily Married Men Cheat on Their Pregnant Wives

Cheating on your partner when they're pregnant is an unfortunately common betrayal.

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Yesterday, comedian Kevin Hart posted a video on his Instagram account where he apologized to his pregnant wife Eniko Parrish and two children for what he labeled as “a bad error of judgment.” Hart did not explicitly state what he was apologizing for, but the implication that he was being blackmailed points overwhelmingly to infidelity. Fans may never know what prompted Hart to come clean, but it would not likely answer the question of why as many as one in ten husbands cheat on their pregnant wives.

That’s right, according to psychologist Robert Rodriguez, author of What’s Your Pregnant Man Thinking?, 10 percent of fathers-to-be cheat on their partners during pregnancy. Other Studies have similarly found that the risk of men cheating on their wives grows along with the fetus. Making matters worse, being otherwise satisfied with their marriages does make much of a difference.

There obviously is no one reason different people cheat, but there are underlying factors (and not excuses) that play a major role in men cheating on their pregnant wives. For instance, women often have a lower sex drive during pregnancy and simultaneously feel their body is less attractive — despite most research showing men actually find their wives more attractive during pregnancies — which can be a shot to their libidos. For some men, that means they will look for sex elsewhere even as their spouse is preparing to have their child.

In an interview with Vice, Ashley Madison founder Noel Biderman explains that he believes pregnancy or the birth of a first child can often lead to “a period of abstinence” for couples. And Biderman believes that this is the time that men are most susceptible to cheating, even men who never would have considered it before. Though this may seem like bleak news for expectant parents, it’s also an opportunity to practice patience before a kid arrives to test that for the next 18 years. That brief period of abstinence will seem like nothing by comparison.

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