If we’ve learned anything over the resignation of retired Gen. David Petraeus as the head of the CIA over an admitted affair, it’s that high-ranking men and women continue to break the rules. Affairs will always make the headlines. So why is it that these powerful leaders continue to put their careers and reputations at risk by having inappropriate relationships?
“Affairs have nothing to do with intelligence,” said Robert Weiss, director of Intimacy and Sexual Disorders Programs for Elements Behavioral Health in Long Beach, Calif. “If you think about an affair in terms of the emotional needs that it meets, the person feels special, they feel important, they feel desired, they feel needed. Just because you’re intellectually bright, engaged and focused, doesn’t necessarily mean that emotionally you’re able to cope at the same level.”
Weiss, who is also a licensed clinical social worker specializing in sex addiction, said men in particular — especially those in the military — are not encouraged to discuss or process their emotions, which makes them more susceptible to having an affair.