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Home » Why Happy Couples Cheat by Esther Perel (Full Transcript)

Why Happy Couples Cheat by Esther Perel (Full Transcript)

Esther Perel

Full text of Esther Perel, a relationship therapist, on why happy couples cheat at TED conference…

Listen to the MP3 Audio here: MP3 – Why Happy Couples Cheat by Esther Perel at TED Talks

TRANSCRIPT:

Why do we cheat? And why do happy people cheat? And when we say infidelity, what exactly do we mean? Is it a hookup, a love story, paid sex, a chat room, a massage with happy endings? Why do we think that men cheat out of boredom and fear of intimacy, but women cheat out of loneliness and hunger for intimacy? And is an affair always the end of a relationship?

For the past 10 years, I have traveled the globe and worked extensively with hundreds of couples who have been shattered by infidelity. There is one simple act of transgression that can rob a couple from their relationship, their happiness and their very identity: an affair. And yet, this extremely common act is so poorly understood. So this talk is for anyone who has ever loved.

Adultery has existed since marriage was invented, and so, too, the taboo against it. In fact, infidelity has a tenacity that marriage can only envy, so much so, that this is the only commandment that is repeated twice in the Bible: once for doing it, and once just for thinking about it. So how do we reconcile what is universally forbidden, yet universally practiced?

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