According to an oprah.com article featured on Cnn.com/living, emotional cheating steers clear of physical intimacy, but does involve the same type of secrecy, deception and therefore betrayal of the traditional affair.
The article points out that while people may think they are fooling themselves that they haven’t really done anything, it’s the breach of trust more than the sexual misconduct that is the most painful part of an affair.
The problem is even worse when we consider where a person is putting their “energy” when they aren’t happy with their marriage or relationship. Instead of seeking out marriage education or some kind of counseling…they are putting their efforts and need for attention in the wrong place. That’s the recipe for an affair; emotional or otherwise.
The story highlights these points which can be a good benchmark for understanding if you have been flirting with an emotional affair:
1) You are confiding in a friend who happens to be someone of the opposite sex, things you aren’t telling your spouse.
2) You hide the amount of time you are spending with “your friend” from your spouse.
3) You are flirting or spending a lot of time with old lovers.
4) You are devoting your energies and time to “your friend” and not putting the pro- active energy into working on your relationship, possibly with outside help.
I’ve seen it. You’ve seen it. Relationships between co-workers and internet friends that crossed a line of what was appropriate, all while the involved person goes to great lengths to explain how “nothing is going on.”
What do you think? Have you ever been tempted by or been in an emotional affair? Have you been on the other end when your loved one was in one? What thoughts can you share?