Warning: Please note the topics in this post are of an adult nature.
We all know what we think counts as cheating, but imagine if what you think is cheating in your partner’s mind is okay to do.
We are just friends and we don’t have sex so clearly it’s not cheating!?
One of the big misunderstandings is an emotional affair that’s given the title of we are just friends or just work colleagues.
Many people think if there is no sex then it’s not an affair – of course it’s not true.
The fact is emotional affairs are probably more dangerous to a marriage than a sexual affair.
The reason it’s more dangerous is the emotional bond needed for an emotional affair to work has to be much deeper to keep the connection alive and this can lead to feelings of love.
Plus there is so much energy in the mystery, the anticipation, the excitement.
Many people that have full sexual affairs actually say the anticipation of what might happen is more intense than the sex it’s self.
Emotional affairs in many cases are kept secret from their spouse.
Usually, the person knows the connection is crossing a line, but because they haven’t kissed or there has been no sex it doesn’t count so there is no guilt.
The acid test is if your partner knew about this connection and what was discussed would they be happy about it?
So one of my clients used to visit happy ending massage parlors. He had done this for years and never told his wife the true nature of the service he received.
She knew he liked massages and was happy for him to go and relax.
For him this was not cheating he wasn’t having sex with her.
He discovered something very different once his wife found out.
Strip clubs, lap dancers is this cheating?
The rule of thumb says if your spouse is happy with what is happening then it isn’t cheating.
I know some partners are dead against their partner attending these clubs. If the couple have agreed they won’t and they do then yes it’s cheating.
One couple had never discussed it, he went to a lap dancing club, she found out and their marriage was now on the edge of divorce.
I know many partners really don’t care if their partner goes to these types of clubs although they may draw a line on what’s acceptable and what’s not.
Is swinging cheating?
I have many couples who attend sessions and they are swingers. Is swinging cheating?
No because both people have agreed the rules, and what happens. Their swinging is an agreement between them.
If a person breaks the couples rules then yes it’s cheating.
You see what equals cheating for one couple doesn’t mean it’s cheating for all.
I remember one couple who came to see me in crisis. She was much younger than him when they first met.
He introduced her to swinging and being lead by a man with more experience in her early 20s was exciting for her at that age.
Fast forward to her thoughts as a mum in her mid-late 30s and her perspective on their swinging changed.
She felt he had simply given her away to many other men, not cared about her, not protected her.
So no it wasn’t cheating, but a ticking bomb called becoming a mum would change how she saw her husband – right or wrong she still felt that betrayal.
The list of what some call cheating and some don’t goes on and on.
Communicating and setting boundaries is critical and once they are set it’s critical to stay within those boundaries.
Cheating, affairs, infidelity
Couples must communicate clearly what they are happy with within their own marriage.
The problem is people don’t communicate. If two people are in a committed relationship and one says “XYZ” equals cheating and the other disagrees.
The truth for that couple is “XYZ” does equal cheating.
This is Affair week
Tuesday: What counts as cheating?
Wednesday: Why affairs that end in marriage rarely work
Thursday: Why do people have affairs?
Friday: Affair addiction