Summer is a sexy time of year. Literally. We’re not just talking about the skimpy clothing and glistening tanned bodies, we’re talking SEX. According to psychologist Diana Kirschner, Ph.D., author of “Love in 90 Days,” we have more sex in the summer than during any other time of the year.
Why? Because we’ve been programmed to, thanks to–wait for it–school. “We were raised in the rhythm of a school calendar for…the first 20 years of our lives,” said Kirschner, who has appeared on top TV shows including “Oprah” and “Today.” “Summertime meant party time — which means we are conditioned to relax, let loose, and have more fun in the summer, (including) sex.”
The mindset induced by this calendar doesn’t evaporate after high school or college graduation; it translates into the adult world, too. Instead of spending most of the year fretting over lame stuff like class and homework, adults get suited up and head to the office. For us, summer means sipping cold margaritas, parties on the weekends, and taking much-needed vacations to the Cape.
“As summer approaches,” said Kirschner. “people begin to relax and (go to the) beach and pool parties. People are…more open. The sexy summer clothes come on. More flesh is exposed, and this is…seductive.”
For adults who are overworked and stressed out, summer vacations not only provide a much-needed escape, but more time for sex. And for parents who haven’t had time alone together since 1995, shipping the kids off to summer camp gives them the prime opportunity to do the wild thing and make up for lost time. (Ignore the fact that you spent six summers at camp; we’re sure your parents were outside gardening most of the time.)
And just as skimpy clothes and cocktails by the pool bring a smile to your face, warm weather and sunny skies can cheer you up. Longer days pump up the amount of serotonin and dopamine in your brain, leaving you glowing with happiness and desire. What’s more, seeing the sunshine is a godsend to those afflicted with winter Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) who spend the colder, darker months depressed, anxious, lethargic, withdrawn, and, predictably, with little to zero interest in sex. Symptoms of the less-common summer SAD include poor appetite, anxiety, insomnia, and — surprise! — an increased sex drive.
But don’t get too, um, excited. We’ve got some bad news. There’s something else that rises in the summer: the rate of infidelity. So should you be worried when you catch your guy staring at that skanky girl’s cleavage or when you notice your girl eying that jerk’s rock-hard abs? Maybe. Sometimes a glance is just a glance, but it’s easy for your “other brain” to do the thinking when the world becomes a tempting candy shop and everywhere you look you see girls dressed like cheap hookers who’ll do anything you ask for a hit of crack. But we digress.
Guys, listen up. According to infidelity expert Ruth Houston, author of “Is He Cheating on You? 829 Telltale Signs,” you are the ones doing the summer cheating. After all, it’s men who are known to cheat more often than women (or at least more men than women admit to cheating when taking part in research studies). Houston explains that the different reasons why men and women cheat have a lot to do with why men are the ones committing the summer affairs. Men tend to cheat for sexual satisfaction–and hello, summertime equals horniness-inducing visual stimulation overload. Women, on the other hand, tend to cheat for emotional satisfaction, and short-term hot and sweaty summer flings just don’t cut it. But there’s one exception: Women in their early 20s and below seem to stray for the sex, too, and they’re cheating nearly as often as men, according to researchers.
But eye candy isn’t just to blame, says Houston, who explains that this hot season provides numerous prime opportunities for taken men to cheat — and get away with it. Accordingly, there are three types of men who cheat in the summer:
1. The Recreational Cheater, who sees infidelity as a summer sport.
2. The Seasonal Cheater, who is faithful throughout the year but has a fling when his wife or girlfriend is away.
3. The Opportunistic Cheater, who will cheat if the opportunity presents itself and he doesn’t fear getting caught. For example he and the guys went on a camping and OMG, he couldn’t have predicted that a group of hot twenty-somethings would camp out next to him and enjoy skinnydipping in the lake! Jackpot!
Now we at Blast are well aware that there are exceptions to every rule; we know that many of you are genuinely good guys. But some of you — and you know who you are — are sneaky bastards jumping at the chance to “go fishing with the guys.” You know what we’re getting at here. Summertime makes it easy for cheaters to lie and leave their other halves completely clueless.
“Some men plan for their summer cheating, and it’s easy for them to do because it’s difficult to be detected, and the opportunities are there,” Houston elaborates. “If he has a business trip, he’ll say, ‘You don’t want to come; there will be lots of meetings and it’ll be boring for you,’ when really there often is a lot she could do while he’s in a meeting.”
And you should be wary of business trips. Very wary, said Houston. “Lots of workplace affairs start as emotional affairs and are consummated on business trips. Everything’s on the company’s expense: the hotel, the fancy meals, the drinks. Everything falls into place.”
Is your guy insisting on sending you on the trip of a lifetime (without him, of course)? If so, it could be a red alert. There may be a reason he doesn’t want to go with you: another woman.
“A man might send his wife on her dream vacation and say, ‘Oh honey, I’ll treat you to a spa trip this summer’ or ‘I know you’ve always wanted to go to Paris.’ What wife is going to say no?” Conversely, when young women have summer flings, Houston explained, they are usually spontaneous and are often when she’s on a trip with the girls. There isn’t the planning.
Houston shared a couple of stories from distressed clients who learned the hard way that their men were having summer affairs. Take “Slimeball,” who told his girlfriend he was going on a rafting trip with the guys. While he was away, his girlfriend bumped into one of his best buds, who knew nothing about the “trip.” Turns out her boyfriend was the only one of the guys who left town.
Or how about “Scumbag,” who said he was going fishing with his friends. But what happened when a neighbor asked to borrow something from the shed? The embarrassed wife discovered all of his fishing gear. The kicker? The loser had the nerve to bring back some fish when he returned.
In the fall, Houston is bombarded with clients who found out about their guys’ summer affairs. And the worst part? Some men get attached to the mistress and don’t want to let the affair go when summer is over. This, Houston said, is why you shouldn’t ignore that gut feeling. “You’re taking a chance when you look the other way.”
And Houston, who is no stranger to receiving angry comments from men who read her articles, would know. Before becoming an author and infidelity expert, she was cheated on by her first husband. Now happily remarried for nearly a decade to a man who went through the same thing, she hopes that her research will help mend marriages and relationships that have been scarred by infidelity.
So what should you do if you suspect or find out that your guy is cheating in the summer? “Never confront him unless you have proof,” warned Houston. “If all of a sudden he talks about going on separate vacations and he never has before, that’s a red flag. There are resorts and cruises where the husband can fish and the wife can go to the spa, and there are activities for the kids. You can all get away and do whatever you want. If he says, ‘I need to get away.’ Well you can all get away together. If he says he’s going to your vacation house and you suspect something, pop in and see how he reacts.
“If something is odd, just be alert,” she said. “Don’t go around peeking and sneaking, but be aware. You know your man’s behavior, and if he’s doing something out of character, then be alert, don’t just look the other way. Not every summer affair ends after summer. And if he gets away with it, he’ll try next year, or continue the affair throughout the year, and that’s a situation you don’t want to get yourself into.”
So the moral of the story? Make sure you shave your legs and buy your condoms because it’s summertime, which means it’s sex time. And please, don’t be a statistic: if you’re attached, keep it in your pants — unless you’re with your sweetie, then you can whip it out!