Tampa, FL (WTSP) - No doubt city leaders would already like to lose the moniker of Lap Dance or Strip Club Capital of the World. But if the folks at AshleyMadison.com are to be believed, then Tampa may have just picked up another undesirable title: that of Mistress Mecca.
The website, which specializes in helping adults cheat on their significant other, is out with a list that says Tampa is fourth in the country when it comes to the percentage of single women wanting to hook up with a married man.
The company says 29.9% of the single women from the Tampa area who pay to begin talking with someone on AshleyMadison.com want to have an affair with a married man. Only the cities of Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and Phoenix have a higher percentage.
"People ask us all the time, 'How prevalent is infidelity in our society?' and I have to tell you, it's way more prevalent than we've come to realize," said AshleyMadison.com founder and CEO Noel Biderman.
Biderman also tells 10 News roughly 130,000 people from the Bay area have paid to talk with others through AshleyMadison.com since the site was launched in 2002. That's more people looking for a hook-up than the populations of Brandon, Temple Terrace and Riverview combined!
"Affairs happen in the workplace. They happen on singles dating sites. But more often than not, now they happen on a platform like Ashley Madison, where everybody knows what they're getting and they keep it discrete and secret, and away from their partner's prying eyes."
Biderman says he's not sure why so many single women in Tampa want to have an affair. He says that's for others to figure out. But he does say when it comes to which zip code boasts the most mistresses, Hyde Park is hands down the hub for home-wrecking.
"Money, it's as simple as that," said Patrick Mosley when 10 News asked why he thought the numbers were so high in Hyde Park. "There's a lot of money in the Hyde Park area and my guess is they're looking for men with money."
"Some women might get a thrill out of knowing that this guy is married, and she kind of has control of him," added Heeda McAuley, when asked about the numbers. "She's got his life in her hands, basically, because she could ruin his life at any time."
But a local marriage therapist says the reason some single women go after married men may be more complicated. Dr. Timothy Evans of Carter & Evans Marriage and Family Therapy believes some single women chase married men over equality.
"'The men do it, so why can't I go do it the same as men, because we're equal,'" Evans explains. "But it's really a messed up view of equality. It's not a very good trait or attribute."