5 Tiny Things That Aren't Technically Cheating (But Are Way Worse)

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"You must learn a new way to think before you can master a new way to be." — Marianne Williamson

How do you tell if you're cheating? First, ask yourself, "How would I feel if my partner did the same thing?" Are you okay with it, or wouldn't like it? In my clinical practice, I have couples struggling with cheating. The males struggle with seeing what they are doing as cheating, but they are against their partner doing the same thing, which creates a double standard. Emotional cheating is a huge problem in many marriages. Emotional cheating is giving another person the time and energy you should be giving your partner.

The following five scenarios are good examples of cheating. Ask yourself: "How would I feel if my partner did the same thing?" Is your answer "Okay" or "Wouldn't like it"?

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Here are 5 things that aren't technically"cheating (but are way worse).

1. You decide to discuss your relationship problems with peers at work.

You argue with your partner. The next day, the office becomes aware of every detail and understands your perspective more than you have explained to your partner.



2. You're on a business trip with single peers attracted to you.

The group asks you to go to dinner with them. You decide to have dinner, hang out at the bar, and watch football. The group decides to go outside to sit by the pool and drink. You return to your room at midnight and zonk out. You usually talk to your partner every night around 9 pm. No phone call is made until the next morning. You lie to your partner about why you didn't call the previous night.

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3. You work with only peers who you are attracted to.

One of your single peers asks for help at their home. You volunteer to drop by after work. A few days later, the same person needs help with a project. You agree, but you don't tell your partner. The same peer begins to flirt with you at work. You feel flattered. You begin to flirt back.

4. A person attracted to you contacts you on Facebook.

They ask to be a friend. You agree. After a few conversations on Facebook, you discover this person is a single parent with kids. The person begins to talk about their frustrations with their children. You give this person your phone number to call you if they want to talk. You start receiving calls all hours of the day and night. You avoid telling your partner how much time you spend on Facebook or phone calls with this person.

tension between couple looking opposite directions

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5. You and your partner are newlyweds.

You have numerous friends you used to date, and who continue to call you. You don't tell your partner the truth about dating these individuals. You continue the friendships with these friends, knowing they want to marry you. Can you spot the cheating?

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Sharon Davis is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who guides individuals, couples, and families in the counseling process to work through relationship problems.