Research has shown for years that men cheat on their partners more often than women. The statistics have remained relatively steady: one out of every five men and one out of eight women will have an affair at some point in their relationships. But break down those numbers and you get some pretty surprising information about which men and women are guilty of infidelity.
In the 1990s, the highest infidelity rate was among men ages 50 to 59, peaking at 31%. The highest number of women cheating were the women between the ages of 40 and 49 at 18%. And, perhaps not surprisingly, the older both got, the less they cheated. But between 2000 and 2009, the highest rate of infidelity shifted to men ages 60 to 69 (29%) and women ages 50 to 59 (17%). Why the change?
Loads of research shows that those born in the 1940s and 1950s reported the highest rates of extramarital sex. This group became sexually active during the swinging ‘60s – the Sexual Revolution – a time when sexual freedom and experimentation became the norm. So it makes sense that a mindset consistent with having multiple sexual partners would carry through the rest of their sexual lives. And that brings up the second significant factor in aging infidelity— better health and drugs.
A variety of drugs like Viagra, Cialis, and testosterone supplements for men have extended their ability to perform sexually well beyond middle age. Advancements in procedures like knee and hip replacements are also extending sex lives. While sexual enhancement drugs and treatments abound for men, not much is available for women. Their interest in sex wanes with age. Some research shows this can be a factor in leading older men to look for sexual satisfaction outside the marriage.
Good news in all these statistics? Married men and women report having the most active sex lives, claiming sex with their spouse 58 times a year, a little more than once a week.