THE EXPERTS - It can happen any time
Infidelity can occur any time, anywhere, say two counsellors and one psychologist.
And often, women who have been betrayed are found to heal better than the men.
This is a finding that was confirmed in research conducted by Touch Family Services.
The seven-month long study involving more than 160 victims of marital infidelity was concluded last year.
Among its key findings were:
■ 7.5 years was the mean duration of marriage when the affair was committed.
■ 31.7 per cent of affairs were with co-workers and 24.8 per cent with friends.
■ 56.3 per cent have healed from the infidelity but feel that they will always carry a scar.
In the report, Ms Teo Seok Bee, senior manager of Touch Family Services, said: "Infidelity is likely to be one of the most traumatic events in the life of a married person. For those who choose to remain married, it often takes many years for trust to be regained and the marital relationship to be repaired."
Family psychologist Richard Lim tells The New Paper on Sunday that women are generally more open to giving their marriage another go.
He says: "Often, there are young children involved and the mother will usually feel less inclined to put her children through the anguish of a split family."
Mr Lim, who has been counselling married couples for more than 15 years, says men who have been betrayed generally find it harder to forgive because of male pride.
Church counsellor Katherine Ong believes that one of the best ways to safeguard a marriage is to lay the right foundation.
She says: "I often remind the couples during the marriage preparation workshops that I conduct that the initial excitement of being in love and getting married will generally wear off, and that is when, for some, the boredom creeps in.
"There will be other challenges that come, like that of having a child, or even, living with each other's parents."
Mr Lim says: "If it comes to a point when you think your marriage is not working out and you have given it your best shot, before you commit infidelity, walk away from that relationship cleanly first."
"Often, there are young children involved and the mother will usually feel less inclined to put her children through the anguish of a split family."
- Family psychologist Richard Lim on why women tend to stay with a cheating husband