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What Makes Some Women Attracted to Already Married Men?

by Kimberly Liby, studioD

Like men, women often want what they can't have just because society says they can't have it. It's about the freedom to do whatever she wants without being confined in any way. There are numerous reasons why some women are attracted to married men and it's been taboo for eons.

Psychological Reactance

Psychological reactance is an individual's reaction to impositions on their freedom -- thoughts or behavior. Whenever someone feels obligated to conform to certain ideologies -- as they apply to attraction and relationships -- it ignites an emotional state within them to resist persuasion and restore autonomy explains psychologist Simon Moss, in his article, "Psychological Reactance Theory." Simply put -- society says it's wrong for women to covet married men -- but some women rebel and have the affair, anyway -- because no one is going to control them, or tell them who and how to love.


Some women find married men attractive and never act on their feelings; then again, some do. If an individual is focused on a person they're in love with -- or attracted to -- they're implementing the thought of that person permanently into their brain because the neurons of the brain go directly to that section of thought and multiply, according to psychologist Carmen Harra. This is how an obsession develops; in fact, Harra points out that the key to obsession is that the woman can't have the man -- which keeps her bound to someone else's husband.

Excitement Without Obligations

In an era where women have become completely independent individuals, they often crave the benefits of having a man without the responsibilities of a relationship or marriage. Single women have more freedom to see whomever they choose without being obligated to just one man, and married men offer that kind of flexibility, suggests clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst Stephanie Newman in her "Psychology Today" article "Why Women Want Married Men." Moreover, sneaking around is exciting to these women because it's clandestine and daring, especially for rule-breakers.

Perceived Scarcity

When something is scarce or in short supply, its perceived value increases, says psychologist Pauline Wallin in her article, "Why You Want What You Can't Have." Some women are attracted to married men because they believe that the world is in short supply of great men and if another woman felt this one particular man was good enough to marry, then he must be a hot commodity.

About the Author

Kimberly Liby has been a content writer and editor since 2006, with articles in "944" magazine. She has written on a range of topics including cooking, health, current events, philosophy, psychology, career, education, writing and editing. Liby holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature with a writing minor from Arizona State University, and a Master of Science in psychology from the University of Phoenix.

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