Table of Contents (Find Your Tip!)
- Platonic Friendship vs Emotional Intimacy
- Emotional Infidelity: Reasons and Signs
- Secrets and Lies
- Priorities and Choices
- Less and More
- Attraction and Infatuation
- Emotional Infidelity: Consequences and Solutions
- Frequently Asked Questions About Emotional Infidelity & Cheating
- Is emotional cheating considered adultery?
- What are the signs of emotional cheating?
- What causes emotional cheating?
Are you in a romantic relationship and feel like your partner is emotionally distant? Are you or your partner spending more time with a specific friend?
You or your partner might be committing emotional infidelity. This term is used to describe an underrated form of cheating. This occurs when exclusive relationship boundaries are crossed in ways other than physical or sexual.
Platonic Friendship vs Emotional Intimacy
Building friendships outside marriages or romantic relationships seem to be an acceptable norm. After all, it could be suffocating to allow our personal worlds to revolve around a specific individual only. Be mindful of the level of intimacy with your friends. As innocent as it could start, friendships could flourish into something deeper.
There’s a thin line between a close friendship and an emotional affair. In fact, due to the lack of usual cheating signs, emotional intimacy is often mistaken as a mere platonic friendship. So you won’t be left blindsided, here are some of the key differences between the two.
- Unlike platonic friendships, sharing about your emotional affairs could be uncomfortable.
- It’s usual to plan a hangout with a friend. Though, it’s unusual if they’re the only person you want to see.
- It’s okay to share your personal issues with a close friend. However, it’s not okay if you always find yourself wanting to open up to them rather than with your significant other.
Emotional Infidelity: Reasons and Signs
Like sexual affairs, emotional infidelity could also root from various factors, including:
- Unmet Needs
- Unappreciated Efforts
- Lack of Time/Attention
- Strained Communication
- Misplaced Revenge
If you’re guilty of any of the aforementioned reasons, be mindful that you may be involved in an emotional affair.
Secrets and Lies
Your spouse or partner doesn’t know about your close relationship, or you aren’t comfortable talking about the friendship.
Priorities and Choices
You start to withdraw — physically or emotionally — from your spouse/partner and often defend or side with your friend. You opt to seek emotional support from them rather than your spouse/partner or other friends/family members.
Less and More
You prefer to spend less time or talk less often with your spouse/partner and more so with your friend.
Attraction and Infatuation
Your innocent friendship feels like it’s mixed with a different level of attraction. You think about your friend more often and usually with malice – more like daydreaming about them.
Emotional Infidelity: Consequences and Solutions
Some don’t take emotional infidelity seriously since there’s minimal to no physical interaction with the third party. Little do they know that it could be as damaging as any other form of an affair. Emotional intimacy could be more deeply intense than a sexual affair as one’s more emotionally invested. Then, like most affairs, it breaks trust and mars respect that could lead to a breakup.
The thing about romantic relationships is that there’s no standard guide into making one affair-proof. It takes much effort, consistency, and commitment. However, you don’t have to be a relationship expert to maintain a happy and healthy one.
While not all emotional affairs lead to fallout, it’s easier to prevent it from developing further than fixing the aftermath. Here some recommendations to avoid starting emotional intimacy in the first place.
- Go on regular dates.
- Be involved in each other’s personal lives.
- Be physically, emotionally, and mentally intimate.
- Support one another.
- Address issues and misunderstandings instantly and genuinely.
- Establish open and positive communication.
- Be considerate, compassionate, and consistent.
Frequently Asked Questions About Emotional Infidelity & Cheating
Is emotional cheating considered adultery?
Emotional infidelity could technically be considered a form of cheating and could also trigger damaging consequences. Most courts don’t acknowledge it yet as grounds for adultery. Nor is it solely enough to win a divorce case.
What are the signs of emotional cheating?
Secrecy, withdrawal from your partner, prioritizing hobbies or interests could be signs of an emotional affair. Additionally, the desire to hang out with a friend more often or excessive social media use can be red flags too.
What causes emotional cheating?
Like any other form of cheating, various internal and external factors could trigger an emotional affair. It could be because of unmet needs, unappreciated efforts, lack of time and/or attention, or strained communication. Some unconsciously commit one due to a troubled past while others consciously cheat due to an act of misplaced revenge.