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Recently, I have noticed that a lot of people I know have been ending their relationships, and a lot of the time they cite the reason as “they cheated on me.” However, I spoke to a few people I know to get a wider idea of what they class as cheating, as we all seem to have our own definitions of cheating and I wanted to make this as varied as possible instead of just spouting my opinion. I will be using initials, not names, because I’m sure they would rather stay reasonably anonymous. I also just want to thank everyone who helped me out with their opinions!
To get us started – my own opinion is that, if you’re flirting with someone else while you’re in a relationship, sending inappropriate messages or photos, or if you do anything physical – from kissing and anything upwards. I have been cheated on in the past by my first long term boyfriend, and found proof of it, which turned my stomach to say the least, so it’s a reasonably personal thing for me to write about and in my experience, it was pictures and endless flirting – and that’s just what I found out about.
Next up is my good friend J, who I’ve known for years and years now – her personal definition of cheating is sending someone pictures or inappropriate messages, doing stuff on webcam, or any physical contact from kissing upwards while you’re in a relationship.
N, who is one of my closest friends, says that she wouldn’t necessarily call kissing and flirting cheating, but she considers them wrong if you’re dating someone else. She considers cheating sleeping with somebody else who isn’t your partner, or acting on impulses you may have towards somebody else.
Now is C, one of the only people I kept in contact with after college. He says that thinking of someone else in an inappropriate way or physically doing something with someone else is the way he would define cheating.
One of my best friends, K, says that she believes there is both mental and physical cheating – mentally, she would consider sending flirty or suggestive messages to someone else. Physically, she would consider anything upwards from kissing on the lips cheating.
S says that being attracted to someone other than your partner, and acting on it, is what she would see as cheating.
My favourite person from college, D – who is very similar to me with morals and stuff – says that he would consider it cheating if you blatantly flirted with someone else in front of your partner, being intimate with someone else – from kissing upwards – and sending erotic pictures and messages to someone else.
Finally, my best friend L had this to say – she considers cheating going behind your partner’s back and doing anything physical, to sending inappropriate messages and pictures, and breaking the trust and honesty, which is disrespectful to the other person, especially if and when they find out.
I agree wholeheartedly with most of the points raised above, but especially one of the points made by L – once the trust is gone, it can be impossible to repair, and in my case it was not repairable at all, and I could never trust him again, as either a friend or anything else, so we now no longer talk.
So there you have it – various definitions of cheating in a relationship, from both males and females, ranging from teens to early 30s. Do you agree with these, or do you have a different definition?