Dating & Relationships

Can Any Good Ever Come From Infidelity?

August 19, 2015 by Justin Lehmiller

Have you ever seen the reality television show Cheaters, which seeks to expose people who are suspected of committing infidelity one person at a time? A group of internet hackers has just outdone them in a major way. Last month, they stole the personal information of all 30 million+ users of Ashley Madison (a website explicitly designed to help married people have affairs). After weeks of threatening to release the data unless the website shuts down (something Ashley Madison was not willing to do), the hackers have followed through by dumping all of the data online for the world to see. Naturally, many people are wondering what the fallout from all of this is going to be.

Most suspect that it will have a universally negative effect and lead to a bunch of breakups and divorces. In fact, some in the media have claimed that this data dump is the single best thing to happen to divorce lawyers since adultery became forbidden in the ten commandments. Of course, this might sound like a perfectly reasonable conclusion, especially in light of how most people on Cheaters respond when their partner is caught in the act. But is it possible that some of these relationships might not just survive this revelation of infidelity, but eventually come out stronger in the end as a result of it? This is the question I sought to address in my latest article over at Playboy. It turns out that, while positive outcomes following infidelity aren’t common, they are possible in the long run. However, this is definitely not a reason or excuse to cheat!

While you’re there, check out some of my other work, including:

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Written by
Dr. Justin Lehmiller
Founder & Owner of Sex and Psychology

Dr. Justin Lehmiller is a social psychologist and Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute. He runs the Sex and Psychology blog and podcast and is author of the popular book Tell Me What You Want. Dr. Lehmiller is an award-winning educator, and a prolific researcher who has published more than 50 academic works.

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