This article has been edited since first being published to clarify there is a difference between Hispanics, Mexicans and Iberians.
According to AshleyMadison.com, the Hispanic community is "the fastest growing community when it comes to infidelity."
In a press release sent by the self-described "largest dating site for married people", the company states that since launching the Spanish-language version of their website in 2009, 1.1 million Latinos have signed up, accounting for 31 percent of their total new membership.
The company further suggests that according to their data, "Hispanic members have affairs at the youngest age: Average age of 27 for women and 34 for men (compared to 33 for women and 40 for men in the general U.S. population)."
Considering the stereotype of Latinos as family-oriented and with conservative social values, this may come as a bit of a surprise.
In a 2010 review of General Social Survey data, one intrepid blogger took a look at the "relationship between ancestry and philandering in the U.S." The writer's analysis indicates that 19.6 percent of married Mexican men and 12.4 percent of married Mexican women have cheated on their spouses, whereas the rates for Americans (i.e. those who claim this as their only ethnicity) were 28.2 percent for married men and 15.5 percent for married women, indexing over 40 percent and 25 percent, respectively, versus the Mexican respondents.
Persons of the Iberian peninsula (Spain and Portugal) rated low for women, 10.9 percent, but quite high for men, at 38.5 percent.
While Hispanics are different from Mexicans or Iberians, and while perhaps presenting a bit of a statistical case for the machista reputation of Latino men, the findings possibly reinforce the stereotype that Hispanics are more socially conservative that the U.S. mainstream when it comes to this issue.
A separate finding reported by AshleyMadison.com in their press release corroborates this, somewhat, indicating that Hispanics who are cheating on their spouses "are choosing to have fewer partners: U.S. members average three affair partners per year; Hispanic members average only one affair partner per year."
However, in 2009, the National Institutes of Health published a report which showed that Latino youths are less apt to protect against sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancy due to their focus "on the emotional and social repercussions of potentially revealing infidelity by advocating condom use than the physical repercussions of unsafe sex."
The findings suggest that this group, Latino youths, are promiscuous and prone to concealing their infidelity, behavior which could persist and lead to the kinds of findings noted by AshleyMadison.com.
So, the jury is still out. The people at AshleyMadison.com may be onto something, maybe they know what’s really going on behind the curtains of Latino marriages. To be sure, they recently announced they are accelerating the launch of their website for Mexico, hoping to launch by end of November.