My Husband’s Excuse For Cheating Is That People Aren’t Naturally Meant To Be Monogamous

By: Katie Lersch:  I’ve heard all sorts of excuses that husbands will give for having an affair.  Sometimes, even the husband knows that the excuse is pretty lame. He’s saying it just to have something to say.  (And saying anything can feel better than just staying silent.)  But one of the lamest excuses out there (at least in my opinion) is the argument that men just aren’t built or intended to be monogamous.  Interestingly, many men only float this theory after they have been caught cheating.  Many never uttered one concern about this when they were dating or considering marriage.

Nonetheless, when confronted about cheating or having an affair, this is the excuse that some men will give you.  A wife might say: “this is the second time that I have caught my husband cheating on me.  When I caught him the first time, he swore that he would never cheat on me again and I believed him. He carried on and begged.  So I was caught off guard when he cheated again.  The second time, he was not so remorseful.  In fact, he was a little bit defensive and this time, he tried to stand up for himself. He said that if you really think about it objectively, you will have to admit that men and human beings as a species are not meant to be monogamous.  He says that if you look at mammals in the world, very few mate with only one other person for life.  My husband maintains that humans are animals at heart and very few animals are monogamous.  He says that asking a man to be monogamous is asking the man to go against his very nature.  He says that it is just unrealistic to ask a man to go through his entire 70 plus year life expectancy and be faithful to one person.  Is he right?”

Well, if I were to answer this question, it would only be my opinion.  I think that if you were to ask ten different people this question, you might get ten different answers.  But I also think that you have to answer the question as it relates to you and your marriage.  No one else’s take on it should matter.  What matters is what YOU think and whether or not monogamy is important to YOU in terms of your marriage.

I personally believe that because human beings have different family involvement plus free will, you can not compare us to other mammals.  For other species, the father does not always participate in child rearing.  Few other species stay together as part of a family unit in the way that human beings do.   Because of this, I personally believe that it is important that the heads of that family (the father and the mother or the two parents) are faithful.  That is just my own personal take.  That is just what I want for my own marriage and my own family.  And I personally believe that human beings are capable of being monogamous because I have never had a problem with it.  I have never cheated on anyone or have even wanted to.  I know that I am not alone in this.  Millions of people are monogamous. Again, this is just one person’s opinion.

Your husband has presented his theory and belief to you and now it is up to you to agree with, debate, or reject that theory.  In addition, you could see if counseling or self work could help him to change his mind down the road. Sometimes, when people do not understand their behaviors and motivations, they will attempt to just find fault in their own “nature.”  But here’s the thing about human beings.  Unlike other mammals, we have free will.  We have the brain capacity to think about decisions before we make them.  We do not just operate on impulse.  We have the ability to listen to reason and to be influenced by our conscience.

I do not think that you need to make a decision immediately – unless you just want to.  You can certainly make it clear to your husband that you do not agree with or buy his theory.  And if you are not willing to live in an open marriage, you have every right to say so. You might try something like: “I have not yet made a decision about our marriage, but I can tell you this.  I don’t agree with you.  Human beings have free will.  We will live as families and it is in the best interest of families that parents are monogamous.  Not only that, but I do not want an open marriage and I have no intention of having one. I’m certainly willing to go to counseling with you to work on our marriage, but I am not going to change my mind about this issue.  I want a monogamous marriage.  I want a spouse who feels that this is possible for him.   I hope that you will eventually rethink your stance on this because I can’t see a circumstance where I  am ever going to agree.”

Once you’ve said your peace, you may have to wait and see what direction he takes.  Sometimes men will give you these types of excuses just to get a reaction.  They hope that you will take the bait.  In essence, they are just posturing but deep down, they likely know that you aren’t going to buy it.  They sometimes just test you to see how you will react.  Once you make it very clear that this thought process isn’t going to fly, he will either have to back off – or if he truly believes this, then he will have a decision to make.  But if you truly can’t live with an open marriage, then is no sense to pretend that you can.  And now is the time to be honest and to make that known.

My husband tried to posture some also.  But thankfully he did not try to make the monogamy argument.  My reaction would not have been favorable.  That was not an easy time for us.  We did eventually recover, but before we could, he needed to learn to take responsibility for his actions.  If it helps, you can read more on my blog at

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