And in the under 35 years of age category, a full 50% of the victims of the recent security hack of Ashley Madison.com—tagline, "Life is short, have an affair"—are women.Women are unlikely to disclose such information honestly, even in an anonymous and confidential interview, due to social pressures like slut shaming, so the actual number of women who stray is likely larger than reported.
But in the words of anthropologist Robert Martin, author of How We Do It: the Evolution and Future of Human Reproduction, "Cultural influences are so strong that it is by no means obvious what is 'natural' for our own species when it comes to choosing mates." Like the latest sex research, the ethnographic data and the behavior of our closest non-human relatives reveal how female mating and reproductive strategies and motivations turn the notion of "promiscuity" inside out.
Even motherhood, it turns out, does not necessarily make females more sexually exclusive or faithful.
Female "promiscuity," it turns out, has a long, prehensile tail. But there is a reason we love Trainwreck and The Affair—and that so many women feel that the idea of sex with someone new is thrilling. And they love getting laid as much as men do, possibly more," says primatologist Natalia Reagan.
Female primates of many species actively seek out sex with new partners not because it's the best way to have healthy babies, but because it feels good. "The sexuality of every female Homo sapiens is informed by her ecological and environmental circumstances in concert with both culture and a prehistoric script in which mate choice has been anything and everything but a lifelong commitment. If the truer and fairer sex were truer to what they actually want, and the world were a fairer place, Trainwreck would have a different ending, there would be little need for female Viagra, and women who currently just watch "The Affair" would be more likely to have one.
And in an Indiana University survey of 900 participants, the male and female "cheaters" were separated by a mere four percentage points.
One organization provides a stat that 54% of women and 57% of men fess up to infidelity in any relationship they have had.
For decades, the prevailing view among experts who study sexuality has been that men strive for novelty and quantity, while women strive for exclusivity and quality in the mating game.
Men, we have heard over and over, "naturally" want to "spread their seed," while women "naturally" want to be monogamous with a monogamous partner who will stick around and help them raise the baby.
If a male thought it was likely enough to have been from him, he'd be more willing to lend a hand to "his" baby's mama.
This would give the baby a better shot at surviving and reproducing down the line, and leave mommy more able to forage, rest, lactate, and in time, get pregnant again.
Diamond, suggest that women especially have a deep and normal thirst to step out.