It seems to be a fact that human sexuality is not completely compatible with the dominant social norm of monogamous relationships. We call it "cheating" on each other if one has sexual intercourse with someone outside their relationship and it is considered as morally wrong by most people.

Now when you ask a "cheating" person about their behavior, you often get the explanation that they did it because of their partners lack of interest in sex.

When you ask people why they think that cheating is wrong, you often get an answer like: it's a horrible violation of trust. Why trust? Well because we seem to have an (mostly unspoken) agreement to not cheat in a relationship and we trust our partners to comply with it.

While I completely understand the sense of such an agreement in a relationship where both people have a roughly equal demand for sexuality, I can't understand why it seems to be the same with people who have little to no need for sexual intercourse.

While I presume that in a healthy relationship you (1) would know about your partners higher need for sexuality and (2) want your partner to be happy, it seems cruel to demand them to renounce something that has little to no value to yourself.

Imagine the following: what if this was not about sex but let's say food. Imagine someone didn't have the ability to taste and could live from eating a piece of bread a day. Obviously such a person would have no joy in cooking. But what if they were in a relationship and demanded their partner to only eat bread as well, even while with others? What if the partner secretly went to a fancy restaurant? Who would you side with and why?

So I want a discussion of the following questions:

  1. Why do people seek to have control about the sex lives of their partners no matter how little value it has for themselves?

  2. Why would a person with little or no sex drive feel hurt when their partner has let's say a purely sexual side affair.

  3. Why is it, in the eyes of the majority of people, contemptible to cheat, while it seems to be widely accepted to effectively demand your partner to renounce on something that is undisputably a basic human need?

  • You said that we call it "cheating" on each other if one has sexual intercourse with someone outside their relationship, but what about those in open relationships? Sexuality is a complex subject with many facets including physical and mental health aspects. – Chris Rogers Nov 8 at 8:42
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    Welcome to Psychology.SE We work differently to most SE sites, where we have a strict policy that all answers should be backed up with reliable references so that the answer can be independently verified, regardless of the reader's/answerer's background. If you still have trouble with this, feel free to visit the help center or Psychology & Neuroscience Meta. Unreferenced claims can lead to answers being deleted. – Chris Rogers Nov 8 at 8:43
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    Another point I would like to make is that this site is a Q&A site rather than a discussion site and therefore this type of question does not fit well here. There are 3 questions which should be split up into separate questions and the basis of these questions to me are primarily opinion-based. Please try to rectify this situation as you may find that this question could be closed. The site's tour may help. – Chris Rogers Nov 8 at 8:49
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    You may be interested in the question: Why are we so possessive of our significant others?. I also made a comment there. Personally, I believe that jealousy has been evolutionarily adaptive. This psychological trait will then be prone to manifest even in times where it seems irrational -- because it isn't rational! It's an automatic response. This psychological predisposition has then been built upon by culture of expected exclusivity. – Eff Nov 8 at 9:05

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