Are You Micro-Cheating?
Micro-Cheating is the new, trendy word for when someone walks on the line of cheating but does not cross it. It could be, but not limited to, texting, talking on the phone or chatting online with someone without physical contact. Micro-cheating looks different to every relationship and has any number of levels of seriousness and boundaries. Let’s be honest, if you are investing time with someone other than your partner and you are attracted to him/her….most people would consider that cheating.
Since most couples have never discussed boundaries for these types of relationships, they have become more and more common. Texting “good morning” or “you look nice today” to an attractive co-worker sounds innocent enough and can be explained away rationally, however, it could also be viewed as flirtatious. The argument is whether the lack of physical contact makes it okay. What constitutes cheating? And what IS micro-cheating, exactly? It could be a number of things. These are just a few examples taken from Thought Catalog:
Reaching out to a girl who’s “just a friend” for a recommendation or advice on an issue he could easily Google the answer to because he feels like bantering.
Giving a waitress or a bartender an obscenely large tip just because she’s hot.
Following a ton of hot girls on social media and beginning to feel like he actually knows them because he monitors their every post that closely.
Sending someone who’s not his girlfriend something blatantly provocative, like an article about sex or the porn industry, because he thinks she’ll find it interesting or whatever.
Logging a girl in his contacts folder under a code name to avoid detection when she call, texts, and emails.
Tagging another girl in an Instagram that reminds him of her or references a seemingly innocuous inside joke between them.
Confiding in or venting to someone other than his girlfriend when he’s feeling especially emotional because he craves the response he thinks he can only get from that other girl.
Going out of his way to tell a woman he met or ran into the night before that she looked amazing or seems to be “doing really well.”
Purposefully neglecting to mention his significant other in conversation with the friends and colleagues he interacts with regularly so that many of them actually think he’s single.
Diminishing his relationship as “not that serious” when in fact he’s cohabiting and maybe even engaged.
Outright denying that he’s in a relationship to extend the flirtatious exchange he’s enjoying with some random girl on the train or at a bar, even if he has no intention of trying to hook up with her.
When something awesome happens to him and he chooses to share the good news with another woman first.
Reaching out to an ex on a day that was once significant to them as a couple, like their anniversary or the day they first had sex.
Going out of his way to do something nice for someone who’s not his girlfriend, like hook her up with tickets to a concert or send a cute quote just because.
Telling another girl that he’s thinking about her on a day that’s not her birthday or a holiday.
Worse yet, texting her “good morning” just to say good morning.
Giving another girl a “hope certificate” (i.e. some degree of reassurance that he’ll be on the market soon) by insinuating that things are rocky between him and his girlfriend when they’re definitely not.
Meeting up with another woman for dinner or a drink and insisting that it’s work related when asked by his significant other for context (and it’s not).
Choosing to do something he knows his significant other would enjoy—like go for a bike ride, eat at a specific restaurant, or see a certain movie—with another woman, even when his girlfriend’s most likely available.
Sending a photo to an ex that reminds him of a good time past because he feels like reliving that old memory temporarily.
Establishing secret code words and/or inside jokes with women outside his romantic relationship.
Recommending that his girlfriend starts wearing a certain type of clothing because he secretly wants her to look like the girl he’s kind of crushing on.
Gifting his girlfriend with a bottle of the perfume his crush wears so she’ll smell like his latest fantasy chick.
Keeping a piece of clothing that reminds him of an ex even though it’s definitely tattered or completely out of style.
Raving about how awesome some other girl is to his friends because it makes him genuinely happy to talk about her.
Downplaying a certain woman’s awesomeness whenever she’s mentioned around his significant other as if proactively doing damage control.
Asking for a girl’s contact information under the guise of potentially working together even though he knows there isn’t a chance in hell they’ll be collaborating professionally.
Following up with a “nice to meet you” message unnecessarily.
Spending all of his time engrossed in conversation with another woman at a party or event even though he brought his girlfriend as his date.
Mindfully leaving his wedding ring at home when he heads out with the boys (not so much because he wants to get lucky, but just because he wants to feel like it’s in the realm of possibility for him again)
Chances are you have done some of these things and perhaps do not consider it cheating. Which is why it has been given the term, Micro-Cheating.
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