The goal of the present study was to examine the emotional content and intensity of jealousy in response to different types of infidelity (both online and offline unfaithful partner behaviors) among Dutch heterosexuals (n = 191) and homosexuals (n = 121). Based on previous research (Dijkstra, Barelds & Groothof, 2010), participants were presented with ten jealousy-evoking situations following which the intensity of two different emotional aspects of jealousy was assessed (betrayal/anger and threat).
One hypothesis derived from evolutionary perspectives is that men are more upset than women by sexual infidelity and women are more upset than men by emotional infidelity. The proposed explanation is that men, in contrast to women, face the risk of unwittingly investing in genetically unrelated offspring. Most studies, however, have relied on small college or community samples of heterosexual participants. We examined upset over sexual versus emotional jealousy among 63,894 gay, lesbian, bisexual, and heterosexual participants.