Published on November 12, 2012 | by Chloe Spencer

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Infidelity rife in London

Londoners are more likely to commit infidelity [Tamara Craiu]

Monogamy is something that many people in stable and happy relationships strive for.

It has been drilled endlessly into our minds that infidelity is wrong, we are supposed to accept and enjoy the concept of being with one person at a time.

After all, this is the key to a happy relationship is it not?

A recent survey by the aptly named IllicitEncounters.com has claimed that infidelity in London is the highest in the country, with over a quarter of married men and women admitting to having an affair.

However, students in the capital are also amongst the most likely to cheat in the UK, But why?

Living in London

What is it about London that makes people want to betray their partners?

Studying in London is a daunting prospect for anybody who has never lived here. The sheer size of it alone is terrifying. There are so many people, so many interesting people, so many interesting people that aren’t your boyfriend or girlfriend of three years.

“I slept with someone within two weeks of being here and I felt guilty, but my boyfriend had no way of finding out, so I did it again.” – Natalie Price

Natalie Price, a 21 year old student from London, explains that she could not help but cheat on her boyfriend who was living 200 miles away, “I was so shocked when I got here, everyone was so different, compared to where I’m from.

“The first few nights out my friends were getting chatted up and I kept saying I had a boyfriend. But eventually, I got fed up of meeting all these amazing people and not being able to do anything.

“I slept with someone within two weeks of being here and I felt guilty, but my boyfriend had no way of finding out, so I did it again. We split up eventually but London is just too tempting.”

In such a huge city, the possibility of meeting people that appear more exciting, more cultured, more intelligent and generally more fun is a strong one. However, location doesn’t necessarily give you an advantage anymore.

Now you don’t even have to leave your house to pre-meditate adultery. The Internet is a huge enabler of infidelity, aside from Facebook stalking and the odd flirty Tweet, many dating websites have been specifically designed to facilitate extra marital affairs.

Statistics

IllicitEncounters.com has been running as a secret dating site since 2003, they have more than 700,000 members in the UK and approximately 47,000 of these are from London alone.

One satisfied male member of the site stated “Having an affair has saved my marriage, as we both now have an open relationship. I realise that this doesn’t work for the majority of married couples, but I’ve never been happier.”

The prospect of an open relationship is one that many people find hard to swallow, but it is also something that has become increasingly common, especially amongst the younger generations.

Open Relationships

Liam Jenkins, 25, a retail assistant from London said,  “I cheated on my girlfriend and she found out. It turned out she’d done [the same] to me.

“From then on we just kind of decided that if we wanted to, we could, but we never go into detail or come clean if it’s unnecessary. I know it does seem weird and it’s technically not ‘open’ but we have a great time and we’re both happy.”

It seems as though more and more people are beginning to accept the possibility that their partners might cheat.

Celebrities aren’t doing the world any favours either, Cheryl Cole repeatedly forgave her husband, Ashley Cole, for publicly humiliating her with a string of affairs and she’s not alone.

The amount of infidelity scandals reported in the press are endless and more often than not, do not end in divorce, society seems to accepted with the idea that everyone cheats.

So what has happened to the good old-fashioned fairy tale of happily ever after? Society has developed drastically in the last 50 years, the ability to shock is something that is often lost amongst the masses.   

It would appear that nothing surprises us anymore, sexuality has become glamorised within the media.

Phenomenon’s like 50 shades of Grey have encapsulated the globe and made many people more aware and open to their sexual fantasies. Living in London does seem to encourage students to stray.

It could be that there is too much choice, too many places to meet interesting people. Or, it could be down to the fact that we live in the largest city in the country with a lot more people willing to admit that they have cheated.

Either way, it would seem Londoners are getting around.

*Natalie Price’s name has been changed to preserve anonymity.

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