The concept of sexual freedom and liberty emerged from the carefree attitudes of the 1960’s, where many nations of the world finally emerged from the debris of the Second World War and their people began to enjoy their lives. This prevailing attitude was a consequence of liberation and civil rights movements in many areas of society, with innovations in culture, pop music and politics all lending themselves to a more forgiving, tolerant and experimental weave of communities.
What is strange however, is that while the general attitudes to sex and sexual freedom have remained relaxed and liberal in western civilisation, there are more and more couples who are experiencing relationship threatening issues with this aspect of their lives. This is can be seen through the disproportionate number of divorces that are caused by infidelity and the acts of sexual promiscuity. With an estimated total of 17 percent of all divorces citing these reasons as the primary influence in instigating proceedings, there are questions as to why couples cannot find sexual satisfaction in such liberal and well informed times.
Infidelity in Sexually Aware Times
Although not all acts of infidelity are related to the physical nature of sex (such as emotional infidelity), the vast majority are, and often influenced by a lack of satisfaction within an existing relationship. This suggests that the heightened sense of sexual awareness that envelops modern culture is in fact creating more curiosity and discord in this aspect of relationships, rather such knowledge contributing towards a partnership or marriage that is more compatible and enjoyable. This is a phenomenon well known through the history of western and eastern culture, where exposing people fully to a concept does not leave them sated but actually seeking even more plentiful and diverse experiences.
Philosophers have often suggested that sexual liberty and leisure time are the route causes of many bad behavioural trends. The argument is that there was a time when the acts of sex were merely an aid to procreate life, and therefore acts of necessity rather than pleasure. Gradual periods of sexual revolution changed the attitudes towards sex and made its physical feats a source of fun, enjoyment and gratification. As people have begun to enjoy and experiment with sex more and more, then the more they have been keen to seek new and exciting sexual experiences. Therefore sexual freedom has created more frustration and wonderment through an over exposure to its physical acts.
Growing levels of infidelity reflect this trend, where one or both partners within a relationship feel inclined to explore their sexual desires outside of an established bond. For anyone who is married or in a long term union and subsequently finds themselves frustrated sexually, it is often easier for them to turn outside of the relationship rather than bearing their soul to their partner. This is often triggered by a sub-conscious aim not to hurt their partner’s feelings while satisfying their own needs and requirements, and though misguided is not necessarily the result of malice or purely selfish motives.
Understanding Sexual Compatibility Issues
As with all issues and conflicts within a relationship, establishing knowledge and understanding goes halfway towards an ultimate resolution. If infidelity is committed on a misguided urge or sexual curiosity, then it is entirely opposed to adultery committed through malicious or deliberate motives, and therefore it needs to be treated a such. By understanding how increased sexual liberty has created a generation in society that seeks and finds ever diverse forms of sexual pleasure, then it is possible to remove some of the resentment and anger surrounding a specific indiscretion. Moreover, the incident may have evolved from a period of decreased sexual activity or a continual issue of sexual incompatibility with a relationship, which makes the infidelity an ill judged aberration rather than an act of callous deception.
By taking these steps, communication about a partner’s infidelity can become a less emotional and stressful process, with both parties understanding exactly what happened and the context in which it occurred. It then become a much smoother path to redemption and the rebuilding of a relationship, during which exact triggers are pin pointed, communicated and the resolved accordingly. In addition to this, it will make future discussions concerning sexual issues with the relationship much less daunting and can actually help the relationship to thrive in the long term.
So the question remains whether the sexual revolution and increased sexual awareness has actually contributed to the increasing rates of infidelity amongst married couples? The statistics would certainly argue so, especially as a significant number of the 17 percent of divorces that cited infidelity through 2009 were the result of nothing more that sexual frustration and curiosity. Heightened sexual awareness and the pleasures that it brings have undoubtedly led to some insecurity and uncertainly within relationships, with the end consequence that individuals are tempted to seek assurance and excitement elsewhere. A misjudged and dishonourable act certainty, but given the society in which we live and its trends of easy and accessible sexual content, often not an unforgiveable one.