BorealJ
Since my Dday, I've consumed a lot of literature in many forms, and a trend seems to have emerged. And that is the difference in the way men's and women's affairs are discussed or perceived. Not so much in the more thoughtful literature, but certainly in the online forum and the more tabloid like online publications (including one that was solely about why men cheat vs. why women cheat).  To be clear, I've not done a full literature review and coded all the language to determine this trend, it just seems to be a message I hear. 
Men's affairs seem to be described as an act of narcissism or false entitlement while women's affairs seem to be described as periods of weakness, brokenness, or mental lapses/illness.
I wonder if this sort of rhetoric interferes with opportunities for healing if we can't see men as vulnerable and struggling with their own past damages or if we can't credit women with being strong, independent and willing to take what they want despite the potential consequences. 
I don't want to rule out that there may be some tangible biological factors that might factor differently for men's and women's affairs but I do wonder if they are more alike than we seem to give them credit for.  I also wonder if a general societal sexism is one of the factors that influence affair behaviours.
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Jak
When women choose to cheat b/c of a male reason like entitlement or “needs” I believe she gets labeled a “slut or whore.”  

I know my ex is a broken man with issues from his abusive upbringing. He admitted it as well. Recognizing he was broken didn’t change his mind on any of his choices. Us talking about being broken didn’t open him up to me at all. That would’ve been nice for me too see and feel at the end. He felt entitled to a “happy” life even more b/c he had a hard childhood. I’m a very open minded accepting person, recognizing his brokenness didn’t help in my case at all. Im sure these stereotypes do interfere with some people’s healing.
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anthropoidape
I have wondered the same thing. I am not sure your assessment matches reality in this sense: I think mostly people who are trying to reconcile tend to give the "weakness" pass to their WS. Those who are not tend to regard their WS as a narcissist or similar. In either case, that's how they tend to regard the AP. 

Which comes first though? Are we open to reconciliation because we can perceive the cause in weakness, or are we choosing to overlook narcissism in our desire to reconcile? 

Deep down, I think there is more narcissism in my wife than I can quite bring myself to acknowledge. I guess I hope it will pass. But also, I know she had a big fall from her genuinely held values and principles. I can't assess her AP in the same way (he was also a WS) because he behaved in a truly narcissistoc way post d-day, while my wife was maybe a 7/10 dropping down to 5/10. (Say zero is normal and her AP hit 11). Also he was lying literally every second I ever knew hin while she was lying for 18 months out of 13 years. I say all this because... in my case the "sexist" take has some accuracy. 

I would say overall though that my wife definitely had a high sense of entitlement during the affair... still does in fact... and that was a big factor. But she was nowhere near the AP's level of that.

Dunno. I think it's case by case.
Maybe it is okay, maybe it will be okay.

BS, d-day Feb 2017, 16 mth affair.
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Kalmarjan
I wonder about being "broken," and whether this is a cop out. 

I didn't start my reconciliation and healing my wife until I took responsibility for my actions, and made the amends I needed to.
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Vanessa
If you aren't too broken to make a promise (marital vows) then you aren't too broken to keep them.  Even "broken people have the capacity to say "i'm not happy - we should separate, go to councelling, divorce, whatever"  WS don't.  They CHOOSE to lie and deceive the person they promised to love and honor.  It takes a lot of work - this leading a double life.  I call BS on the "oh, but I am "broken" excuse.
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Keepabuzz
Being “broken” isn’t an excuse for infidelity, there is NO EXCUSE. But I do beiieve that broken people see the world through a different lense than those who are not.  My wife was/is broken, and now, due to her actions, her betrayal of me, I too am broken. My lense is different now. I would never have cheated before, and I won’t now. But the way I view the world and the people in is different. I view it all different because I’m now different. I am not a trusting soul now. I always look for everyone’s “other” motive. I question everything, to include myself. I never had any depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts in my entire life. Well I can’t say that every again. What my wife did has disastrously effected ever facet of my life, it has truly changed who I am.  I am not the same person I was before, and I don’t think I ever will be that person again. Pain changes people, for me, it wasn’t for the better. 
Male BS, D-day July 2015, trying to stay out of the dark.....
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anthropoidape
It is kind of shifting goal posts to talk about whether something is an excuse. There's no excuse for an affair; it's dishonest and harms others and there is never any defence for that. But it's still possible and meaningful to talk about contributing factors and they differ from case to case. As an extreme example, I think 16yos who are still in high school are a different case to 60yos who have been married for 40 years. There are all kinds of things that can make someone more or less prone to an affair. I can't think of a case where it's okay but I can think of cases where there is more hope for recovery and cases where there is less hope for recovery. 
Maybe it is okay, maybe it will be okay.

BS, d-day Feb 2017, 16 mth affair.
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GuyInPain
The topic of this thread is important because how society views adultery affects how WSs and BSs interpret the adultery in their lives.  I do think that there is a tendency to see women's affairs as an understandable response to unhappiness in their marriage – husband isn't attentive enough, is too involved in his work, is not emotionally intimate, etc.  Men's affairs, on the other hand, tend to be viewed very negatively as narcissistic, entitled and callous to their wives.  Some of this is changing, especially as some younger women are acting out in very entitled ways, but the overall societal bias is still in play.  As a BH I can say that these tendencies influenced my response to my WW's adultery in that I was willing to be emotionally bullied into accepting her rewriting the history of our marriage to make it appear that her adultery was my fault.  As a result I suppressed my emotions of hurt to the point of dissociating about the affair for years.  It's only recently that I've realized that I need to feel the hurt, demand explanation, apology and empathy, and pursue the healing process that we should have pursued years ago.  As you can imagine, that's been a hard road with my wife, but we've made a lot of progress and in her better moments she acknowledges that it's been helpful for her as well as for me.  Fortunately, major writers on adultery today are good on clarifying that the genders share equally in hurt and culpability, for instance Esther Perel in 'The State of Affairs', 
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Keepabuzz
Also most betrayed women who stay with their wayward husbands and reconcile are viewed as strong, whereas men that stay with their wayward wives and reconcile are viewed as weak. There is even a derogatory name for the men that stay.  
Male BS, D-day July 2015, trying to stay out of the dark.....
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UrbanExplorer
Keepabuzz wrote:
There is even a derogatory name for the men that stay.  


Perhaps it's easy for me to say, but I'd pay no mind to someone using that term. It's nearly 100% correlated with misogyny and reveals more about the person using it than about the target. Besides, your marriage is no one else's business.
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BorealJ

Besides, your marriage is no one else's business.
Hey UrbanExplorer, I quoted you and replied here, but started a new topic as it is a bit of a different subject. 
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arizons
Its funny how people make your personal business theirs and they think they get a say,.
Female BS, D-day 1/03/2017, 
I'm going to rebuild me like a remix,

and raise my soul like a Phoenix 
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arizons
Jak wrote:
When women choose to cheat b/c of a male reason like entitlement or “needs” I believe she gets labeled a “slut or whore.”  

I know my ex is a broken man with issues from his abusive upbringing. He admitted it as well. Recognizing he was broken didn’t change his mind on any of his choices. Us talking about being broken didn’t open him up to me at all. That would’ve been nice for me too see and feel at the end. He felt entitled to a “happy” life even more b/c he had a hard childhood. I’m a very open minded accepting person, recognizing his brokenness didn’t help in my case at all. Im sure these stereotypes do interfere with some people’s healing.


Well, I know my husbands ex-ap had and still has mental and substance abuse issues... and I am not saying that just because I can't stand the woman. Regardless, even with those issues, I think it came to a morality issue. She boldly stated in an email me to me that she just didn't care and was in the affair for her own selfish reasons. that likely was the only truthful statement other than when she outed the affair to me that I will likely ever get from her. She even continued to say she had no respect for me.... Which I answered and replied, "OF COURSE YOU have no respect for me... You don't even have respect enough for yourself!"
    As far as my WS, He too had his own issues... substance abuse with alcohol being one of them. I have always been sober and promoted him to be sober and healthy... well... when not only a drinking buddy but a willing desperate affair partner presented himself... His morals flew right out the window too.
Female BS, D-day 1/03/2017, 
I'm going to rebuild me like a remix,

and raise my soul like a Phoenix 
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