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SCANDAL: Chuck Berry

THE PAPERS have been littered recently with stories of all manner of celebrity and high-profile marital infidelities. From footballers to bankers and politicians, you name it, they have all been at it.

The high-profile drama of who’s been zoomin’ who is now as commonplace as reading about who has or hasn’t had their face botoxed. There was a time when extra-marital affairs were treated as scandals and, as was the mood of those times, exposure meant a life of virtual obscurity for the person or persons concerned.

For example, in 1963, when the then Secretary of State for War John Profumo had an affair with call girl Christine Keeler, it brought down a government. Likewise, celebrities like Chuck Berry (pictured) and Charlie Chaplin saw their star-power plummet immediately after the scandals that followed their affairs with young women. Not any more. Now we are regaled with every salacious detail (and pictures too) of who, how, when, where.

But why do people cheat and lie about it? If they are unhappy in a relationship, why not just leave?

I personally have never bought the ‘natural’ inclination of men to spread their seeds and be fruitful. Nor have I been so naive as to be blindsided with the notion that women don’t have it in them to cheat. Men and women are socialized very differently and the stakes for an unfaithful woman are just as high as they are for a man.

For years, studies have told us that infidelity is more common amongst men than women, but research published by One Plus One British Social Attitudes Survey shows that opinion about extramarital sex has changed little in two decades, and over 60 percent of the population see extra-marital sex as always wrong.

Would I be right in thinking that seeing and doing are two completely different things? It’s like puffing away on a
cigarette knowing it may kill you.

Some things, however, are true no matter how hard you might try to block them out. Infidelity is infidelity no matter how brief. A lie is always a lie, no matter how prettily told. Some doors, once opened, can never be closed again, just as some trust, once it’s been lost, can never be won back.

Regardless of what prize they have at home, a person will cheat if someone else sparks their interest enough and they have the resources - time, money and opportunity. More radically, as I have become older, I don't think monogamy is in our nature and that’s why only so few can successfully practise it. When you do find someone who has remained faithful for quite a number of years, you have to acknowledge that it didn’t happen by accident. I saw it in my own parents’ 50-year marriage.

If asked, they will tell you it took a lot of will power to remain loyal.

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