Do Affairs Work and End Well?


Whether you are thinking about starting an affair, are already in the midst of one, or feel your partner could be cheating, you likely have one burning question at the back of your mind - do affairs work and end well?

It's difficult to find a definitive answer to this question, as every affair is different, as is the outcome. That said, there are some statistics that could offer more insight into whether affairs can ever truly work and end well.

Not All Affairs End in Divorce

Around one third of marriages and relationships end after a partner reveals an affair. It's quite a surprising number, as it indicates that an affair doesn't necessarily end badly, with many couples managing to remain together despite the affair.

Although there is often a caveat to this stat - the chances of remaining together significantly drops is there are no children involved or the relationship wasn't too long. So, an affair may or may not end well depending on the duration of the relationship and whether kids are involved.

Some Affairs Lead to Relationships

There are certain affairs that lead to the breakup of a current relationship and starting a new one with the person, which could be viewed as a good ending. However, this depends on the happiness of the current relationship and whether the new relationship provides more satisfaction than the previous.

Also, there is a very small chance of a relationship that began as an affair to last. Only one third of second-marriages or relationships from affairs last, reducing further if children are involved. It's a figure that highlights how most affairs rarely work or end well.

Affairs are Powered by Hormones

It sounds obvious to say an affair is the result of hormones, but the brain does produce high amounts of dopamine during an affair, while adrenalin is also pumping through the veins due to the forbidden nature of the relationship.

While this feels initially amazing, it's usually due to a lack of emotional satisfaction and excitement from a current relationship. Yes, you'll feel good at certain moments, but this will quickly fade away should the affair end, whether progressing into a relationship or ending entirely.

Affairs Can Work and End Well - Under the Right Circumstances

It would be naïve to say that not all affairs work or end well, as some are blessing in disguise for unhappy marriages and relationships. For example, if an affair leads to the end of an unhappy marriage or relationship, the emotional well-being of both people could be improved.

This is because an unhappy relationship has a negative impact on physical and mental health. So, while an affair may be the wrong way to work out that a marriage is dead, it could end up being the best outcome for people in an unhappy relationship.

Additionally, if you are in an abusive relationship, an affair can often be the catalyst needed to finally leave the abuser.