Infidelity blamed for 85% of UAE divorces

Divorce|April 9th 2015

Marital infidelity is the reason for as much as 85 per cent of divorces in the United Arab Emirates, divorce lawyers have claimed.

Speaking to Gulf News, local solicitor Nita Maru said infidelity is “the main cause of the majority of divorces in the UAE”, based on the frequency with which unfaithful spouses featured in her firm’s divorce cases.

While she said that the phenomenon was found among all nationalities, ages and professions within the Middle-Eastern country, it was particularly common with expats. Ms Maru suggested that affairs were very common “especially when one cannot bring their spouse/family here from back home”.

She posited that “marital and sexual dissatisfaction, sexual addiction, the thrill of ‘wanting the excitement’, social networking and general lifestyle” could all be factors in this trend.

Dr Rory McCarthy is a clinical psychologist in the UAE. She told the paper that as many as 75 per cent of relationships she deals with involve unfaithful partners.

Couples in their first year of marriage often “don’t think twice before having an extramarital affair”, she claimed, possibly because they “lack maturity and their expectations are unrealistic”. She also suggested that women who have been forced into marriage are “more prone to cheating”.

Sociologist Dr Rima Sabban said that “growing modernisation and exposure to different kinds of encounters between men and women” had led to the “dangerous trend” in the UAE. According to official figures, the country’s most populous city, Dubai, experienced a 34 per cent rise in the divorce rate in 2014.

Photo by Michael Coghlan via Flickr

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