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Cheating in a Relationship

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Can you really define cheating in a relationship? As complex as the feeling of love may be, affairs and cheating in a relationship are just as complicated, says Roberto Rossi. But who defines cheating, and what constitutes cheating in a relationship?

cheating in a relationship

Cheating in a relationship is funny business. Painful, most definitely, but it’s extremely hilarious to watch from a third person’s view.

Have you seen how relationships change with time?

And have you noticed how we twist our own promises to our lovers to suit our needs as time passes by?

You kissed someone else because you assumed your partner was cheating? Or did you sleep with another person because your partner just wasn’t showing you any affection?

Is that cheating, or is that just changing with the circumstances?

Cheating in a relationship

More often than not, things can sometimes be lost in translation when it comes to your relationship with a loved one. Without clear boundaries set, it’s even more likely that relationships won’t last past the initial honeymoon period.

It seems nowadays you can’t even fart or sneeze without your loved one having opinions about it. Why is this happening?

Only god knows, but as couples become more and more immersed into each other’s daily lives, problems seem to be occurring left, right and centre!

Just think about it for a moment. Have you been in a situation where the doubt of infidelity has been so small and so insignificant, but in the end you ended up having a row with your partner and probably took a few days to resolve it while the dust settled?

Have you been in that situation when in looking at what is positive in the relationship, you instead focus on the negative? There’s always a light at the end of the tunnel, but it’s up to you to find the torch that can take you there.

Cheating and our own views

Cheating in a relationship can be a confusing affair. Recently, a friend of mine came to me with a dilemma. His girlfriend had left him because he often sent text messages to a female colleague from his workplace. [Read: How to text flirt]

This girl from work would call him occasionally to talk, to gossip, etc. His girlfriend came to him concerned, and even after he had comforted her over a few glasses of Portuguese Rose, she came right back at him with the sucker punch, “but you always see her at work, why do you need to talk to her even when you’re home?”

His response was somber, and there wasn’t much he could have said back, other than “she’s a friend who likes to talk, what’s wrong with that?” Of course, some level of flirtation probably took place, but let’s be big boys and girls here, who doesn’t flirt in life?

Infidelity creates its own circumstances

As a few months went by, a one-off, random office drinks party ended with my friend and his workmate sharing a kiss. Of course, my tone changed. But in the end, I felt this couple had a lot more going for them then, to allow a stupid kiss to get in the way.

Three years together, and a stupid kiss could ruin all of that? Who hasn’t done something stupid which they come to regret, or rather forget? But this is it. When he felt guilty about it and told his girlfriend about the kiss, she was obviously pissed off. But she went one step further. She told him she always knew there was something going on between them.

Fair enough, I thought. She was well entitled to believe that something could come from this because they had locked lips.

But it was her failure to reflect on their relationship to understand that such a scenario was always a miniscule event in a wider picture. She assumed that that one kiss had started an entire illicit relationship between her man and the woman from work, and she just wasn’t ready to accept that perhaps, just maybe, it was an unfortunate event that happened by accident. It could happen to any of us.

Becoming the unfaithful one

Anyone can fall prey to such accidents, given the circumstances and chances of timing. No one’s a saint and no one’s a sinner if you really weigh the circumstances.

But as the American actor Henry Winkler once said, “assumptions are the termites of relationships.” They eat at you and your partner, and in the end, just like a termite loves to grind down on wood, the termite assumption eats at the tree you and your partner have grown together.

When is it cheating?

In today’s world, it seems that everything shared between a partner and a friend of the opposite gender is cheating. Absurd, right? Wrong.

You will be surprised at the amount of cases where relationships have ended over the most miniscule of things. With respect to sexual infidelity, cheating is only cheating if, ladies, you happen to walk into your room to find some butt naked chicka playing with your fella’s nuts (and I’m not talking about food here).

Alternatively, cheating is only cheating if men, you happen to find your lady with her panties in a twist with another man. Well, unless you’re talking about emotional affairs.

Anything is remotely possible today. Think back about my friend, his example is exactly what is killing the average American relationship of a twenty or thirty something year old. We, as humans, are drawn in by our assumptions of situations without allowing ourselves to reflect on the positives. Sounds familiar?

But I hear you saying out loud ‘what could be positive from my partner kissing someone else?’

Well firstly, it’s not as if they slept with them. They didn’t share a night of passion that they would normally have shared with you. Secondly, if you know about it, either they have told you themselves or you’ve found out yourself, but that doesn’t mean they are going to do it again. [Read: Chemistry in love and the first kiss in an affair]

If they do, then, of course it’s cheating in a relationship. But what if it happened in the heat of the moment, a onetime thing? It really could happen to any of us!

Defining cheating in love

The definition of cheating in a relationship is changing with the times. Most relationships end when either one of the individuals involved does the unthinkable. They cheat. [Read: Having an affair with a married man]

In the U.S. alone, one in three marriages now ends in divorce, and a lot is put down to infidelity issues. In a recent national survey, twenty two percent of married men have strayed at least once during their married lives, while fourteen percent of married women have had affairs at least once during their married lives. And that’s the number of people that confessed to their deed! Can you even begin to think of the number of secret affairs going on right this minute? [Read: Emotional affairs]

During the 1950’s and 1960’s, cheating was seen as a pass-time. Both genders could openly do more things and people, but today is different.

With the techno-advanced twenty first century, all forms of communication are a blessing to us. We text, email, have mobiles, and interact much more. Socially, we are freer in more ways than ever before, but in trying to be a free spirit like a character out of a Paulo Coelho book, we cause ourselves harm too. The more we interact, the more problems we get into, and more temptations we come across.

So what is cheating?

When one talks about cheating in a relationship, some may think of a lover banging someone else. But as I said, times have changed. Flirting, kissing, cyber-sex, text-sex, email-sex, facebook-sex, even looking at the opposite sex is considering cheating! Forgive me, maybe I just won’t look at beauty the next time it passes me by.

Seriously though, because people have different opinions about what’s considered cheating, it’s up to you and your partner to decide what the “ground rules” are for the relationship.

What constitutes an act of infidelity varies between and within cultures and depends also on the type of relationship that exists between people. Even within an open relationship, infidelity may arise if a partner in the relationship acts outside of the understood boundaries of the relationship.

Many people agree that there are six basic qualities to healthy, loving relationships. Respect, trust, honesty, fairness, equality, and good communication. Everyone is different when it comes to dating rules, so people should sit down with their partners and agree on what counts as cheating in their relationships.

Discussing these details, however uncomfortable they may seem, is actually the best way to create boundaries in love and avoid cheating in a relationship. Click here to continue reading about cheating and relationships – what is cheating?

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Have your say!
  • KatyDid
    January 13, 2013 | Permalink |

    I disagree with the point “It could happen to any of us!”

    No, it really couldn’t.
    If you don’t allow yourself to be put in a position where it could, or you can anticipate what is going to occur and make the moves to keep it from occurring, it won’t happen.

    I wouldn’t excuse my partner kissing someone that wasn’t a close friend or family member (& that’s only a kiss on the cheek).

    The fact that your friend was accepting texts outside of work, and didn’t ask the co-worker to lay off the texts after his girlfriend had expressed a desire to spend time with him without the interruption of his co-worker speaks volumes about your friend.

    There’s being your own person, and then not caring what your partner thinks and not caring enough about them to change your behavior, which is what happened here. He didn’t change his behavior with his co-worker or draw boundary lines, & his girlfriend of 3 years left him. She shouldn’t have settled for someone who didn’t care about her feelings, and she didn’t. Right on for her.

  • kaz
    January 27, 2013 | Permalink |

    I agree with katydid … If it makes your partner feel uncomfortable that means she herself has given u the chance to stop anything from happenIng if u then go and carry on with what she has expressed concern about u have no right to9 blame it on a mistake. Her reaction was that of a woman who knows what she wants nd respects herself .. if she didn’t respect herself in this matter there would be no respect for her by the partner nor herself. If u love someone u wouldn’t put ureself at risk of fucking up the relationship .. especially where the boundaries have been set once she found him making or straying towards the mistake. Prevention is allways better thn redemption …

  • Anonymous
    February 4, 2013 | Permalink |

    My husband cheats on me all the time. He creates profiles on dating websites to meet women. He has been doing this for years. He tells women that I am dead, our child is someone else’s and threatens their lives when he is caught.

  • WhatDoYouThink
    November 26, 2013 | Permalink |

    Me and my gf became together after dating eachother for two (while datinh others) and a month while daiting just eachother. To quick in my opionion, but it has a reason. I was going to move away for 4 months. So I just popped the question asking her if she wanted to be together. I never get into a relationship if I really don´t see something in her, so this was my second girlfriend and I am 26. When I am singel I date really a lot. So this girl became something more to me.

    So i moved away and we were in a relationship. She had never been in a really relationship before, she is 23, so she was unsure on some things. Like how to behave and what are bounaries you can cross and can´t cross. I explainded to her what I thought was right and not and we agreed in the end on something both could live for. This girl is also a bit insecure in ways she behaves and I can tell she needs some more attention than others, but that´s ok. This girls also has super super conscience and is afraid of doing the wrong thing, in private and also in the relationship. So she sometimes really overreacts.

    Anyway to fastforwared, after beeing together for 1 & 1/2 month she was planing to visit me. A week before she ended up partying hard with a lot of her classmates and instrocturs. She became really drunk. She called me 2 days later and told me about what happend and this is what happened: Beeing in the bar she remembers standing really close to her instroctur while others also was around. She said it was room to stand somewhere else but she stood really close to this guy, like inbetween his legs but she did not sit on his lap. She remembers having thoughts that it would be nice if he touched her on her back, but this did not happened. When the guy also told he was in a relationship, she felt that it was a bit bad. Nothing more happened. When asking her girlfriend some days later what she thought about what my gf had done, because she saw it. Her girlfriend told her that this was not something she would have done if she was in a relationship, but that she did not seemed to want to cheat but more like wanting attention.

    Fastforwared an hour they all came home to their studenthome. After haveing a bit afterparty it was time to sleep. She and a guy friend of her stopped at the stairs to their room. She told him she needed some attention. They sat on the stairs stroking eachother on the back and on the stomach with cloths on. She was still very drunk. She remembers also stopping stroking eachother when someone went pat them. She alos remembers to having some thoughts about it would have been nice if something more happend while sitting on the stairs talking with this guy. She also remebers that she seemed to haveing thoughts that this stroking may be wrong. She also told me that she had been hooking up with this guy a year before me and her became together. But nothing more happened and they wnet to sleep.

    So she called me two days later and told me about this and had such a regret. I became mad and said i needed few days to think about it. Anyway she came to visit me, and this was still a topic because she felt such a regret and she was afraid that this relationship would be built on a lie since she had done what she had done and had thoughts she had had, and also not sure about all her thoughts.When asking her if she would have kissed him if he tried to kiss her, she is not sure, but is afraid that she might have returned it because she had allt hose thoughts already. When asking her if she had feelings for this guy. She said absolutely not. So this is where it is. She feels superbad and is also afraid that this realtionship might be build on a lie because of the thought she had that night and the things that happened at the bar and on the stairs. All she wants is to be with me.

    I am spinning both ways, forgive because this was not completely cheating and she feels so bad and I knwo she has this super conscience or not forgive her because she is not sure if she would have kissed him back or not if he tried, because she had these thoughts.

    What do you guys think? I really appreciate every answer. I really need to try to think rationally and make the best decision.

    All The Best

  • Lilly
    December 4, 2013 | Permalink |

    I had a very debunked one night stand, it was basically over before it started,
    I felt awful and told my husband, after a week of talking, crying etc, we decided to put it behind
    Us, however, a week later I found out he had been on sex dating sites for months, I am so mad
    That he couldn’t tell me, he has paid for these sites and he dosnt understand why I’m upset, he lied to me about it, he has sex with me then goes on line to talk dirty to women, I count this as cheating.

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