Marital indiscretion: Do only the powerful fail the loyalty test?

Posted By: Poonam Srivastava/Atika Singh                

Is it true that a person holding a position of power and influence becomes more susceptible to indulging in extra marital relationships than ordinary individuals? There have been many examples of high profile people who have had to face inglorious and unceremonious controversies due to such personal indiscretions. Bill Clinton, Dominique Strauss Kahn and the recent case of the former CIA director general Petraeus whose affair with his biographer has forced him out of favor in the public domain. Even in the Indian context there have been celebrities known to be involved in relationships outside their marriages. In our country some even take to changing religion and eventually settling down with new partners to bring sanctimony to their affairs.

It can be said that in the case of the powerful, particularly men there might be specific reasons why there are greater chances of occurrence of extra marital indiscretion. Often the professional world’s glamour and rise of an individual becomes a solitary journey where the spouse is left out. While such a successful life story easily attracts other young attention seekers which makes an elder person especially vulnerable to fall for a short fling with the younger person in the form of a love affair.

However I feel today spouse relationships are in a flux across all social strata. While celebrities make news and catch our attention, there is a growing tendency of tenacity in marital relationships among other quarters for many reasons. In the current generation men and women are becoming equal in more ways than one. They are empowered at par, with education, professional qualifications, job openings and earning opportunities. As a result they are also becoming equally expressive, assertive and often demanding about their emotional and physical needs and well being.

Most relationships seek friendship as a founding plinth especially among the middle classes and when one partner is not forthcoming in offering this the other is not shy in seeking outside company or support to fulfill this missing need. A more open society, social networking opportunities are some channels that make exploration of no strings attached relationships a possibility for a person to step out of a frustrating bad home situation.

But is this a solution or a roadmap to long term bliss? If we were to go by the destructive route taken by the lives of many of the newsmakers on account of their extra marital affairs, the answer becomes evident. These stories are a warning bell for us to rework our love stories through investment of quality time, communication, simple tender love and care in our marriages to save ourselves more heart break!

(Poonam Srivastava is a Delhi based writer who has published books and articles on subjects of social innovation and practical spirituality. She also actively volunteers her time to promote causes related to these spheres.)

(Atika Singh is a post graduate in Counseling Psychology from Amity Institute of Behavioral & Allied Sciences and graduate in History from Delhi University. She has been actively involved in the emotional counseling space; and is passionate about empowering individuals to deal with their personal and professional issues, and achieve greater success. She is a certified Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) Practitioner.)
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