Emotional cheating is a widely debated topic. Many feel that since it is platonic and does not involve physical cheating that it doesn’t count as breaking the vows of marriage. However, others believe that when you are seeking emotional support and connection with someone other than your spouse it’s just as detrimental to a marriage as a sexual relationship. If someone is on the fence about whether or not they are cheating on the spouse, here are some questions they should ask themselves.
The definition of emotional cheating is having a connection with someone other than a husband or wife that is kept hidden. People who are involved in emotional affairs often write emails, text or talk on the phone much more than they would someone they are merely friends with. They also tend to dress nicer and seek out opportunities to see that person in a social setting. A person who is emotionally cheating will make their spouse feel neglected because they are actively involved in sharing their feelings and emotions with someone else.
Cheating overall isn’t about sex, it’s about the deception created when someone isn’t being fully honest with a spouse. Studies have shown that spouses who are cheated on are likely to forgive and recover from the physical act of cheating but have a harder time dealing with the fact that they were lied to and cannot trust their partner.
A person should ask themselves whether or not the conversation they are having with someone is appropriate or not. If it is unlikely they would be comfortable if their spouse found out about the conversation, then it’s probably inappropriate. Another guideline to follow is that if you wouldn’t talk to your spouse about something intimate, then it’s not appropriate to talk to someone else about it either. If a person feels the need to keep the relationship a secret or to downplay its importance, that’s a sign that there is more meaning behind it than they want to admit.
Do emotional affairs always end in divorce? Not necessarily. In fact, many psychologists report that if both parties are committed to making the relationship work, over half of couples recovering from a cheating episode can recover and have a long and happy marriage. The spouse involved in the emotional affair must be willing to end all contact with their other partner and make steps to prove their spouse can trust them again.