- A new survey of 2,625 Ashley Madison users found the majority said the best part of their affair was that it allowed them to explore their sexual fantasies.
- 46% of users surveyed said they practice kinks or fantasies in their affairs that their relationship partners don’t want to do.
- The top-ranked kink for surveyed users was anal sex followed by role play and then edging, or orgasm control.
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People who have affairs often feel liberated to act differently than they would in their relationships, and a new survey from Ashley Madison, a website with the tag line “Life is short. Have an Affair,” suggests just that.
The survey, which included answers from 2,625 Ashley Madison users over the past year, found that 52% of respondents said the number one perk of their affair was the ability to live out their sexual fantasies. Some 46% said they acted on sexual fantasies in their affairs that their relationship partner wouldn’t participate in with them.
“Our members come to our site to explore a desire they can’t fulfill in their marriage,” Christoph Kraemer, Ashley Madison’s managing director for Western Europe, said in a press release.
To learn more about what those desires were, Ashley Madison asked the survey respondents about their favorite kinks, or turn-ons that diverge from societally perceived “normal” ways of having sex, as well as their sexual fantasies, and created a list of the top five in each category.
Ashley Madison users enjoy anal sex, role play, and exhibitionism
According to the results, 28% of the Ashley Madison users said anal sex were their favorite kink, while 17% chose role play and 15% chose “edging,” or purposefully delaying one’s orgasm.
They found 11% chose exhibitionism, or having sex in a place where you could be caught, and 10% chose voyeurism, or watching others pleasure themselves.
Kinks aren’t just for cheaters, they are a normal part of exploring sexuality
The survey only included responses from those who have cheated on their partners, but enjoying sexual fetishes or kinks isn’t a trait unique to cheaters. In fact, it can be a healthy and normal way to explore one’s sexuality.
“As psychologists, we’ve moved away from thinking about these kinds of practices or relationships as indicators of abnormality or disorder and more towards the recognition that this is a form of intimate diversity,” Phillip Hammack, a professor of psychology at University of California Santa Cruz, previously told Insider.
People who enjoy role playing, for example, tend to partake because of the power exchange aspect of the practice.
According to Hammack, power exchange is at the core of many kinks, especially those under the BDSM, or bondage-discipline, dominance-submission, and sadism-masochism, umbrella like choking, being tied up, or being hit consensually during sex.