Wednesday, August 08, 2007

What is Cheating?

What constitutes cheating? I am not talking about in school but in marriage. What qualifies as an infidelity?

I have a friend who met someone. Then struck up a text/email/phone relationship. According to my source, nothing physical has happened. Plenty of discussion about attraction has though. There is no doubt that these two people are attracted to each other but if they haven't touched is it wrong? Could it just be a harmless flirtation that will eventually burn itself out?

So, would you consider this cheating? Yet?

Personally, I can appreciate a handsome man and I don't feel that just looking is in any way cheating on my husband. When we married I did not pluck out his eyes with a hot poker so I know he notices an especially hot girl when he sees one.

But, I am interested to know what the internet thinks about the first scenario.


  • I would say no, it's not cheating. But it's something to worry about, nonetheless.

    By Anonymous Fancypants, at 8/08/2007 12:15 PM  

  • I don't think having a fantasy is cheating. In some ways, a cyber-relationship is an enhanced fantasy.

    It's also similar to being drunk--you're invulnerable, your inhibitions are down and everyone looks gorgeous.

    It will be hard for me to forgive myself for using the word "cyber."

    By Anonymous Tank, at 8/08/2007 12:25 PM  

  • No, I don't consider it cheating until something actually happens, not just thoughts and flirting.

    By Blogger Renee, at 8/08/2007 1:03 PM  

  • I look at it this way. How would this friend feel if her husband was talking/flirting with another woman. It's hurtful and disrespectful.

    By Blogger Nettie, at 8/08/2007 3:05 PM  

  • I don't think it's "cheating", but I agree with everything nettie said. It's borderline.

    By Blogger mamatulip, at 8/08/2007 3:09 PM  

  • A flirtatious friendship with someone that seems attracted to you is one thing. But, when it crosses the line to openly discussing that mutual are treading on dangerous ground. Emotional cheating is almost as bad as physically cheating, I think. Without passing judgement at all, I'd tell your friend to be very careful...

    By Blogger Crazy MomCat, at 8/08/2007 11:50 PM  

  • Trust me, when you find out an "emotional" affair has happened, it doesn't matter that no actual touching occured between them. In my case, betrayal reared its ugly head first, then the foundation of trust crumbled around me. The rebuilding process is still underway.

    nettie fudge

    By Blogger nettie-fudge, at 8/09/2007 9:35 AM  

  • Nettie is right on. Sometimes it's not a matter of whether something is "right" or "wrong" -- those things are intellectual. What ultimately matters is what effect the flirtation will have on the primary relationship. Does it positively contribute to the relationship or does it erode trust? Methinks the latter in this situation. And is it really worth the risk of losing one's partner's trust?

    By Blogger B.E.C.K., at 8/09/2007 11:17 PM  

  • Right! It's one thing to suspect that person of being attracted to you and know you're attracted to that person. But when you discuss it? Yeah...that's crossing a line, because it's acknowledging something that (presumably)neither of you intend to act upon. If it's just a friendship, then there's no need to discuss an attraction that you can't/won't/don't want to act upon. This is shaky ground. I have a lot of male friends and my husband has female friends, but it would destroy the integrity of those friendships to entertain anything beyond something platonic.

    By Anonymous wordgirl, at 8/10/2007 6:33 PM  

  • Hoop and I are respectful about checking people out in each others company. But we don't mind pointing out people we feel are beautiful either. It's not something either of us feels ashamed about. I feel that you're doing something wrong the moment it starts to feel wrong. If you ask yourself, "Could I tell my significant other about this?" and the answer is "No" then you need to stop it.

    By Blogger Tink, at 8/10/2007 9:54 PM  

  • Yes, it's cheating.

    It's cheating because you're channeling emotional energy toward another person that should be going to your spouse. Bad things will come of it.

    By Blogger Diesel, at 8/11/2007 11:51 AM  

  • Attention without intention is what flirting is meant to be...
    I do not believe this could constitute as cheating...

    By Blogger Pendullum, at 8/12/2007 12:46 PM  

  • I have to agree with Diesel. When you start giving your emotional self to another, your spouse is being slighted. I think if someone has to ask if it is wrong or cheating then it probably is or they wouldn't be asking for permission to continue. Being faithful goes beyond not cheating physically, it is being loyal and respecting your partner. If your significant other would be hurt reading what you wrote to this cyber friend, then it probably isn't a good thing is it? You shouldn't be afraid or ashamed to share anything with your spouse.

    By Blogger PEACE, at 8/14/2007 12:33 AM  

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