In this age of modern technology, it’s hard to pinpoint what exactly counts as cheating. Does it count if I Facebook message a guy friend (who I once had a fling with and still harbour a little crush for), ‘Happy Birthday’? What about tweeting a (good looking) colleague who sometimes brings an extra coffee to work, just for me? What about sending him a picture of myself via my mobile phone—of course I’d make an itsy bit of effort to capture a good angle—but that’s not cheating. Is it?
Years ago, tongues and tabloids were set aflame by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. The Hollywood hunk lashed out against allegations that he had an affair with his Mr & Mrs Smith co- star while he was still married to Jennifer Aniston, saying in one interview, “What people don’t understand is that we filmed for a year. We were still filming after Jen and I split up”. Jolie had also denied being the cause of Brad Pitt’s divorce with Aniston…until her statement in the New York Times that “not a lot of people get to see a movie where their parents fell in love” in reference to the ‘chemistry’ she shared onscreen opposite Pitt in the movie.
Like many spouses before him, Pitt’s definition of what constitutes an affair might be a little misguided. Dr. Edward Chan, a couple’s therapist and psychologist with over fourteen years of experience in helping troubled relationships, says that cheating doesn’t necessarily have to involve sex, but “anything that violates a partner’s trust
through physical (sexual) or emotional means.”
“Committed partners cheat because they have subconscious needs that are unmet by their present partners. Consequently, they spend time and energy seeking satisfaction for those needs. Very often, it is mostly to do with things like being listened to and attended to,” he says.
Rocking The Boat
Sean P. Diddy Combs was caught red handed when Jennifer Lopez overheard his steamy phonecalls to another woman. Eva Longoria stumbled upon her husband Tony Parker’s hidden electronic information of the affair he was having with his teammate’s wife. Today’s world has afforded individuals with different ways and portals to be unfaithful—is it acceptable to keep regular contact with an ex on Facebook? Just how much can you talk to a friend of the opposite sex before it counts as cheating?
If you’re basing it purely on logic, then, no, having friends that happen to be guys isn’t cheating. Then again, may I remind you of a scene from He’s Just Not That Into You? Bradley Cooper and Scarlett Johansson are by the pool after he attends her yoga class and he awkwardly says that he doesn’t do ‘this’ because he is married. So they settle on being friends—right before she decides to go skinny dipping while he watches. Here lies the proof that if you secretly like someone and attempt to make them fancy you back, that’s already a leap in the wrong direction. By definition, cheating doesn’t just imply sleeping with someone else, it is deceiving—yourself as well as others—into believing that there is nothing more than what you have chosen to reveal.
IF YOU SECRETLY LIKE SOMEONE AND ATTEMPT TO MAKE THEM FANCY YOU BACK, THAT’S ALREADY A LEAP IN THE WRONG DIRECTION
There are two sides to every issue. You might find there is nothing wrong with being friendly with someone you find attractive, as long as there is no kissing, intimate touching and sex. Thus, there is no harm in one on one lunches and catch up sessions. Perhaps, for the good of your relationship with your boyfriend or husband, you’d rather not tell him—just so he doesn’t get insecure about it. This is the bud of the blooming problem. The feeling of needing to hide something you think ‘there is nothing wrong with’ goes hand in hand with lying.