After Matt Hancock was forced to resign when a secret relationship was exposed, the couples therapist Orna Guralnik explores the cocktail of ego and vulnerability that leads some senior figures to risk it all
The images of Matt Hancock and Gina Coladangelo splashed across newspaper front pages in June were shocking enough to cause a scandal, and the breach of his own social distancing rules ended Hancock’s tenure as health secretary. But while affairs are not unique to powerful men, many observers will struggle to understand why those with so much to lose from public exposure , from Boris Johnson to Bill Gates, are nonetheless willing to live a double life.
Anushka Asthana speaks to Dr Orna Guralnik, a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst and star of the acclaimed US series Couples Therapy, about the desperate need for approval and affirmation that can lead those whose careers depend on a reputation for probity to seek excitement beyond the boundaries of their marriages. And Guralnik argues that the risks of infidelity that lurk in any settled relationship cannot be resolved by communication alone, but by a commitment to finding the space to preserve our identity as individuals, as well as as part of a couple.