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The Politician Infidelity Syndrom


The headlines are seemingly endless…..former Presidential candidate John Edwards admitting to an affair and fathering a child outside his marriage…..former governor Eliot Spitzer hooking up repeatedly with a high-price call girl……Governor Mark Sanford admitting to having an affair with a woman from Argentina……. Why would any successful person in the public eye and under almost daily scrutiny from the media risk everything—their career, marriage, and reputation—for such a short-term high?

Politicians in general tend to have a genetic pre-disposition to risk taking, whether that be financial, physical or sexual. Although we all have a thirst for that dopamine high we get when we try something new, politicians tend to have a higher threshold level to start with; thus, they need more stimulation to actually hit that mark and are more likely to take big risks, such as gambling, drug use, drunk driving or cheating on their spouses, according to Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil, PhD, an internationally acclaimed therapist, relationship expert and author of five books on relationships...

“Just about everyone craves some sort of excitement in their life—and some people push boundaries to find it,” states Dr. Eaker Weil, “Anything from skydiving to having a physical, emotional or financial affair…wanting to seek the high that comes from a risky experience is normal—but how you handle the situation can make or break your relationship.”

Many spouses of cheating politicians engage in what Dr. Eaker Weil calls “break up to make up” which provides another type of rush for the offending partner because often “they don’t want you until you don’t want them.”

“A temporary break up can help resolve certain issues and creates a shake-up that many couples need,” states Dr. Eaker Weil, “In certain circumstances, this is the only thing that will create an action step which will make reconnecting and making up easier to do.”

Although multiple examples of politicians and reckless sex have been in the spotlight lately, it is certainly not a new phenomenon. Examples abound from the past, including former President Bill Clinton, former Senator Gary Hart, and most famous of all, the Kennedy’s—including Father Joe, John and Robert—just to name a few who have risked their careers and their relationships to experience that sexual high. It is as though they need the high, and according to Dr. Weil, seeking an affair satisfies the anxiety that goes along with risk taking, positions of power, along with isolation of travel for their jobs.

“Unfortunately, many people sacrifice both a career and a relationship they’ve worked hard to build on the quest for that high,” concludes Dr. Eaker Weil.

Dr. Eaker Weil is available for an interview on this topic.
Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil, PhD, an internationally acclaimed couples, children and family therapist, was named by Psychology Today as one of America’s best therapists. New York Magazine recognizes Dr. Bonnie as one of the city’s best therapists.

Dr. Bonnie has appeared on Oprah five times, was the featured guest in a three day series on the The Today show, and has been a guest on Fox, O’Reilly Report, CNN, 20/20, The View, Good Morning America, CBS Health Watch, CBS, ABC, NBC, Better TV, and Fox News.

Dr. Bonnie is a regular contributor as the relationship expert in Ladies Home Journal and was featured in the “Can This Marriage Be Saved” column three consecutive months. Her work has appeared in Redbook, Good Housekeeping, Men’s Health, the New York Magazine. Parenting Magazine and USA Today have used Dr. Bonnie’s expert advice to support features. Numerous other local and national media outlets have interviewed Dr. Bonnie.

Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil is the author of five books with two best seller’s Make Up Don’t Break Up, and Adultery the Forgivable Sin, which became a made-for television movie. Her recent book, Financial Infidelity: Seven Steps to Conquering the #1 Relationship Wrecker, Penguin Group, is now available in paperback.


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 cheating spouses

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