(1) The “monogamy” / long term / raise kids together / high commitment strategy
(2) The “cheating” / opportunistic / get better genes / cuckold / low commitment strategy
So yes, men can have a wife (1) and a girlfriend (2) at the same time. He can screw the girlfriend casually and not get to wildly emotionally attached to her – because he’s not committed to her. She’s a pump and dump.
However as the wife (1) ages, she becomes less appealing on a Body Agenda level to make children with. So when he starts up a (2) relationship with a younger woman on the side, there starts being increasing risk that his Body Agenda will decide that the girlfriend is the better option to pursue a (1) strategy with. When that happens, he will experience a massive mental shift, and because he’s now committed to her, he follows through with all kinds of risky behavior to ensure that he creates a relationship with her.
When the shift happens, the wife is no longer the (1) strategy, and she doesn’t even qualify as the (2) strategy anymore either. So the shift means she becomes a person of no importance sexually to the husband. Very quickly any feelings for her will vanish so he can more easily discard her.
This is the classic “mid-life crisis” thing where a completely normal husband suddenly turns into a “teenage boy” and does a great deal of “Incredibly stupid things that mess everything up for everyone else.”(TM) But as far as his Body Agenda is concerned, if he gets an extra couple of kids from it, it’s all worth the drama he causes.
During this shift in allegiance from the wife to the girlfriend, the husband will have the full fledged Rationalization Hamster experience. Old wife bad. New wife good.
So for the girls “on the bench”, it’s a potentially winning strategy as a way of mate-poaching. However they would be more successful at this strategy if they don’t actually sleep with the husband too easily and simply engage him on an emotional level. They are auditioning for the role of “wife” and not “girlfriend”, and a woman that doesn’t just give it up easily makes a better option for committing to. The more they hold out sex as something they require commitment for before they give it out, or threaten to take it away without commitment, the stronger their hand is.
There is also the risk for the older man that despite all the drama they go through to get in a primary relationship with the younger woman, they are being cuckolded by her. What the younger woman most needs from him is resources, what she needs least from him is his semen. It would be logical to assume that a woman capable of cynically waiting in line to mate-poach, would also be capable of cynically cuckolding as well. You can give up everything to be with a young hottie and turn into a cuckolded diaper changing chump that ain’t gettin’ any.
The resultant drama of dumping the wife and splitting finances may also damage the reproductive chances of the husbands children he has had with his wife. Maybe there’s no longer enough money for his son to attend college for example. Maybe his daughters never get their teeth straightened. So his risk to jump ship must be carefully weighed against multiple factors.
But in general, the hotter, younger and more sexually virtuous the girl is, the more likely the husband will fall head over heels in love with her.
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand…because inquiring minds will want to know…
The best defense for the wife is to (1) stay as physically attractive as she can, (2) have brief periods of being out of her husbands routine observation, (3) suddenly display knowledge of new sexual techniques, (4) start wearing sexier underwear, and (5) attempt to engage in brief periods of hyper-sexuality with her husband – as in suddenly wanting it multiple times in a 24 hour period and being highly active and vocal during that time as well. One notes that I did not say she should cheat on him, just…. well… pull on his… attention.