11/14/2012 09:30 am ET

Why Powerful Women Can't Cheat

For the high-powered woman, the concept of "having it all" means pressure to succeed professionally while also being a good mother and wife. For the high-powered man, "having it all" apparently implies succeeding professionally while also having a respectable wife and a high-paid prostitute/housekeeper/intern/biographer mistress on the side. Why do powerful men risk everything on affairs? As more women take over positions of power, will they break adultery's glass ceiling?

We can now add former CIA Director David Petraeus to the long list of famous and powerful government officials so self-important that they apparently never dreamed anyone would notice their extramarital indiscretions, regardless of their high profiles: Arnold Schwarzenager, Eliot Spitzer, John Edwards, Bill Clinton, etc., etc., etc. Why do these men — always, always men — keep risking it all when the eventual outcome is so obvious to the rest of us?

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