19 February 2019
Many people who suffered cheating spouses admit they harbored thoughts of suicide or inflicting violence on their partners. Photo:
Many people who suffered cheating spouses admit they harbored thoughts of suicide or inflicting violence on their partners. Photo:

People who suffer cheating spouses admit to violent thoughts

Four out of ten people who suffered cheating spouses said they harbored thoughts of committing suicide or inflicting some physical harm on the partners, a Hong Kong survey has shown.

According to the survey conducted by the Caritas Family Crisis Support Centre (CFCSC), 40 percent of people who endured extra-marital affairs had violent thoughts.

Some people said they thought of killing themselves upon learning of their partners’ affairs, while others felt like taking violent physical action on the spouses.  

The Caritas survey was conducted on 480 people between 2013 and February 2015, Ming Pao Daily News reported.

Ah-ling, who found out about her husband’s affair with a friend of hers during her pregnancy two years after marriage, said she twice thought about killing her husband.

“I actually picked up a knife, but I did not do it in the end,” she was quoted as saying.

Ah-ling sought help from CFCSC and sat down with her husband after managing her emotions. She has opted to preserve her marriage after taking into consideration the welfare of her children and parents.

Ah-fai, who was married for 22 years, said he was shocked and extremely emotional when he learnt that his wife was having an affair.

He admitted that the thought of killing his now ex-wife and the man she had an affair with crossed his mind several times.

But now he is grateful that he managed to control his anger and avoid taking any rash action, given that he has a young son.

Ah-fai said he has now recovered from the trauma after two years of counseling at CFCSC, but he is still wary of letting others know about his divorce.

Paulina Kwok Chi-ying, a centre supervisor at CFCSC, said most people feel betrayed and deceived when they learn that their spouses are having an affair.

Couples should try to calm themselves first before seeking counseling help, in order to avoid any violence, she said.

The survey also found that extra-marital relationships usually stem from lack of communication between couples, people getting bored with their relationships and the imbalance of interest in sex.

Many people tend to enter into affairs with co-workers or friends.

Couples should try to communicate more and care about each other to sustain a happy relationship, Kwok said.

The government should roll out a standard-work-hours system so that people will have more time to devote to their partners and nurture good long-term relationships, she said.

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