8 Fundamental Ways Being Cheated on Changes You

For the worse … and for the better.

Catching your husband or wife cheating on you changes everything about your relationship. How could it not?

“The psychology of infidelity is actually quite complex, much more than the current moralistic conversation about it where people are ‘good’, ‘bad’ or ‘flawed’, therefore dismissed as damaged goods attempts to dispel the cliché myth that ‘once a cheater always a cheater.’”

If you want to fix your broken relationship and save your marriage, it is possible. And the path back to a healthy relationship begins with each partner seeking to understand both the cheating spouse’s reasons for having an affair, as well as the ways in which the betrayed husband or wife has been changed forever as a result.

By taking such an approach, couples can reach a place of healing — and even redemption — with insight and wisdom, regardless of whether or not they ultimately stay together.

The ways infidelity changes you depend not only on who you and your spouse were before the affair, but who you are both committed to becoming once it’s out in the open.

No matter what circumstances led to the affair, no one in its wake will be left unscathed. Yes, that goes for the cheating wife or husband, as well.

There are always reasons, not excuses, why men and women cheat.

If you have been betrayed by your spouse, you’re painfully aware of the many ways their infidelity has changed you already.

But if you are the betrayer, you may not have thought through full impact your actions would have on your spouse and your family, let alone the lasting consequences you’ll face throughout your own life.

The effects of infidelity run the gamut from emotional to physical to neurological. The agony of a broken heart and broken trust isn’t only in your head — it lives and breathes in your body, too.

Here are 8 ways catching your husband or wife cheating fundamentally changes you on an emotional, physical, and neurological level.

1. Your self-esteem and self-worth are shattered

You wonder why you weren’t “good enough” and why someone else was “better”.

Because your self-esteem is destroyed, you start looking for things you may have done to cause your cheating wife or husband to stray. Surely, you believe, it must have been something you did or didn’t do.

2. You feel stupid

You start wondering how you didn’t see the affair coming, and how you can ever trust your own instincts again.

3. You lose your ability to trust

The affair is always in the back of your mind. Even if you stay together, your trust isn’t as unencumbered and naturally given as it once was.

4. You’re afraid to love again

The prospect of either falling in love again with someone else or staying with your spouse is frightening. You never want to give your power to someone again.

Because you’re afraid to let your guard down, the world becomes a less happy and promising place in which to live. Holding onto the notion of love is a challenge because you now associate it with unbearable pain.

5. Your brain takes a beating

Neuroscience has shown that the rejection from infidelity has both short and long-term consequences to brain chemistry.

Since feelings of love activate the release of dopamine in the brain, causing “a pleasurable experience similar to the euphoria associated with the use of cocaine or alcohol”, being cut off by the dagger of infidelity may impact neural pathways in similar ways.

6. You experience physical pain

The emotional experience becomes integrated into the physical experience, and you hurt … everywhere.

7. You can’t stop obsessing

Studies show that women are more prone to rumination than men, constantly replaying all the possible causes, scenarios, and consequences of the affair.

They are also more inclined than men to feel somehow responsible for trouble within romantic relationships in general.

8. Your eyes are opened

Despite how infidelity changes you negatively, it also affords you clarity after the shock and anger are mitigated. You begin to see what you may have ignored, and learn how you make choices in mates.

Research has show that this is likely to lead you to make better choices in future relationships.

According to Craig Morris, research associate at Binghamton University and lead author of the study:

“Our thesis is that the woman who ‘loses’ her mate to another woman will go through a period of post-relationship grief and betrayal, but come out of the experience with higher mating intelligence that allows her to better detect cues in future mates that may indicate low mate value. Hence, in the long-term, she ‘wins … The ‘other woman,’ conversely, is now in a relationship with a partner who has a demonstrated history of deception and, likely, infidelity. Thus, in the long-term, she ‘loses.'”

Ultimately, how your partner’s infidelity changes you is, of course, your decision.

There are plenty of individuals and marriages that heal and become stronger and more vital than they were before.

That’s not to say, obviously, that infidelity is a viable consideration for marital improvement and personal growth, but recognizing the many ways infidelity can change you will help both spouses recover from the painful aftermath of an affair.

And, hopefully, greater awareness upfront will take the consideration of infidelity off the table altogether.

 

3 Lessons I Learned from Ending My Toxic Relationship

Here’s one from one of my female readers. I thought it was worth sharing.

Take it away, Serena.

My mother always told me I’d have to kiss a few frogs before I found my prince. What she didn’t tell me was that one of the said frogs would humiliate, manipulate and otherwise crush me through a years-long cycle of lying and cheating. At the time (my junior year of college, when I was still a half-formed shell of a person), it seemed inconceivable that any good would come out of that experience. But looking back on the toxicity of the relationship now, I realize I learned some valuable lessons that have given me a unique perspective on which red flags to look out for. I’m sharing them here in the hopes that you leave sooner than I did.

Listen to Your Gut—It’s Probably Right

When we first started dating, it was slow and measured rather than hot and heavy—it took months of him wooing me and wearing me down before I was receptive to his advances. Why the hesitation? For starters, a faint whiff of misogyny hung over him like a cloud. (His bedroom wall was collaged with Sports Illustrated models, ugh.) I knew from the way he talked about his upbringing that we had different values long before we got into it. From the very beginning, there was a tiny voice in my head saying this isn’t right; this isn’t the person for you. But I was 20 years old: I was flattered, I wanted to be wanted and I wanted to throw caution to the wind. Eventually, I caved. But in the back of my mind, I knew there was darkness going into the situation. I think we all do—in our gut—when placed in those scenarios, and it’s not something to brush off as I did.

Fool Me Once, Shame On You. Fool Me Twice, Shame On Me

I took him back twice. Or was it three times? He was a master manipulator, always knowing what to say to make me feel like I was the one in the wrong. For example, we had been seeing each other for six months (and had swapped “I love you’s,” mind you) when I found out that he had slept with someone else on the same night I had been with him and left early to study. His excuse? We had never had a clear exclusivity discussion. (As if that excuses that kind of grade-A jerk behavior.) This set a precedent that still makes me wince: When he lied or said cruel things, I rationalized them as being my fault, too. The fact that he treated me so badly became this embarrassing hurdle to overcome; I wanted to make him happy to prove to myself that I could do it. (I’m not proud of this.) By the second time we blew up (cheating, again) I knew better than to take him back. Second chances are a part of life—but you should never have to offer a third.

The Only Way Out Is Cold Turkey

The official end came on the heels of my semester abroad. He’d called me every night I was away, guilting me about my absence…but when I got home, I found out that he’d simultaneously been having a relationship with a second girlfriend. At this point, none of his behavior surprised me—and it became painfully clear that the only way out was out. After fleeing campus and returning home, I called him, with my best friend holding my hand, and let him have it. Despite his pleading and many, many moments of weakness where I almost reached out to see how he was doing after the breakup, I held my ground. As a result, I got over him in just a few months’ time. For anyone leaving a toxic relationship, I cannot stress this enough: There has to be a clean, full break. There’s too much room for error otherwise.

 

5 Things I Learned After My Husband Cheated on Me

Here’s another post from one of my female readers. I think it’s worth sharing. Take it away, Jill!

I have something to confess: people whom you trust blindly can even deceive you in a span of seconds. I have been married to a man for almost years now. We had an unhappy yet satisfying marriage. Things took a turn when I got to know that he had thrown himself into an affair.

I couldn’t believe for months that the love of my life could cheat on me. Being cheated sucks big time. It doesn’t matter how miserable my marriage was – finding out, the person I loved would betray me – was nothing less than a nightmare.

It was as if cheating on me wasn’t enough. He left me for his girlfriend and married her after 2 years – cherry on the top, they are expecting their first child now. Trust me, this is not an experience you’d be willing to go through.

Do you want your forever to last? Here are some hard-earned lessons that I came across when my whole world crumbled to pieces.

Don’t Blame Yourself

If your husband cheated on you is it your fault? No. You are not to blame for his infidelity. It was a unilateral decision that he made – a choice which was made without your consent. His behavior was a very clear reflection of how he was as a person.

Sometimes, I thought that he left me because I wasn’t good enough. You’ll realize it soon that cheating has nothing to do with appearance, money or education. Stop being guilty.

Material things don’t matter. What’s significant is how you feel in each other’s company. Your husband found joy with someone else, so why blame yourself for it?!

Get Over It

Leave your past behind. Try to bring all the positive vibes that help you move on and get wiser to handle relationships in the future. I was distrustful of everyone initially, but with time I have tried to adjust myself and I have started accepting things.

You cannot remain sad and distressed your whole life. You may plan to look for a job. The best thing is to keep yourself busy so that you don’t have time to think about your traumatizing past.

Know Your Worth

I was in a marriage, where I was willing to give away all I had. But if someone doesn’t value you it’s out of your self-control. Don’t let go of your self-respect for the sake of a happy marriage. I wouldn’t recommend it at all.

Always know your worth! There is no point in staying with a person if it’s an abusive relationship. Try to consult a family law firm if you’ve decided to part ways with your partner. I, for one, realized I’m planting water to a dead flower.

Don’t Force Him to Stay

I made the mistake of forcing my husband to stay in the marriage even when he didn’t want to. There’s no point staying in an unwanted marriage.

Divorce is considered to be taboo in a community. But it’s better to let him go if he wants that. You’d be heartbroken initially but you’ll learn to cope up with life.

If he doesn’t want to stay, he has nothing to lose by negotiating with you. Don’t stoop low by clinging on to him. Forcing things on your spouse would just complicate things in the future.

Forgive and Forget

There will always be these two opinions. Sometimes, you’d think it’s okay to forgive him despite what he did to you. Or, you may go with the flow and leave things for God to decide. Forgiving your spouse will help you move on with life. The trust will come later.

If he’s really guilty, you may forgive him this one time and try to rebuild your relationship with your partner. For me, I always believed that it’s better to be alone rather than to be cheated on.

If you don’t want to forgive your partner, that’s your personal choice. It takes time to heal. It took me years to get past the melodrama, but I had my whole life ahead of me. That was the only reason I decided to forgive him and start afresh with him.

Have you internalized your feelings of rejection? Don’t close yourself from the faucet of truth. You definitely are worthy, important and able. You might want to devote your whole existence to the person you love but that existence may come crashing down.

Everything happens for a reason and only you so have a choice to grow from experiences.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

15 Early Red Flags Girls Usually Ignore (+ 5 We Definitely Shouldn’t)

There are a few common red flags that tend to appear in relationships, and most of us know how to identify the majority of them. But then there are those warning signs that don’t appear all that bad at first.

There are also those that might actually seem like positives in the beginning, and so we ignore them. Unfortunately, ignoring red flags only leads to problems.

Red flags foreshadow behavior that becomes even worse as time goes on, so the sooner we pick up on the fact that someone isn’t good for us, the better.

It’s time to learn what warning signs to look out for in a partner! Check out these 15 red flags that girls usually ignore, and 5 that we never should overlook.

20 Red Flag: Always Talking About His Ex

Digital Trends

It should definitely be a red flag if a guy can’t stop talking about his ex. You might brush it off as him simply letting off some steam, but if he keeps ranting about the ex, then the ex is still very much on his mind.

A lot of the time, these kinds of guys are on the rebound.

19 Red Flag: Making Her Feel Jealous When She’s Not Normally

Magicpin

Sometimes jealousy comes down to our own insecurities that we project onto other people, and other times jealousy happens because other people purposely do things to mess with our minds.

If a guy clearly does things to make you feel jealous, and like you might lose him at any time, that’s a red flag.

18 Red Flag: She Has To ‘Edit’ Things About Their Relationship When Talking To Her Friends

Film Doo

Pay attention to how you recount your relationship to your friends. If you’re always censoring and editing things out, ask yourself why.

Are there things going on in your relationship that the people who care about you wouldn’t approve of? If there are, it normally means that you shouldn’t approve of them either.

17 Red Flag: Comparing Her To Other People In His Life (In A Negative Way)

Booklover’s Haven

It doesn’t feel good to always be compared with other people. It’s not a good sign if the guy you’re seeing always measures you up against his exes, or his friends’ girlfriends, or worse, his mom.

You’re your own person, and you don’t have to live up to somebody else. You’re enough on your own!

16 Red Flag: Blaming Her For Everything That Goes Wrong

Vox

There are two sides to every story, and sooner or later, we all mess up in relationships. If he blames you for every little thing that goes wrong, that’s pretty telling behavior.

It shows that he can’t take responsibility for his own actions and likes to shift the blame onto other people.

15 Red Flag: Being Unable To Argue Respectfully

ScoopWhoop

Being able to argue with respect is key in a relationship. Eventually, a couple will always fight, which is why being able to argue in a way that’s not harmful to your overall relationship is so important.

It’s a red flag if he totally loses the plot every time you disagree about something and takes days to recover from a small difference of opinion.

14 Red Flag: Saying Hurtful Things And Calling Them Jokes

ScoopWhoop

The truth is often hidden beneath the guise of a joke. If your partner likes to say things that hurt your feelings and avoid responsibility by saying they’re just jokes, it says a lot about him and his level of respect for you.

If you’ve told him how they make you feel and he persists, consider it a major red flag.

13 Red Flag: Allowing Friends To Treat Her Badly

Seventeen Magazine

It’s sad when relationships come between friends, but it’s even sadder when your partner’s friends aren’t nice to you and he does nothing about it. If you’re in a relationship with him, then he should stick up for you at all times.

If his friends aren’t quality people, you might ask what sort of person he is to relate to them in the first place.

12 Red Flag: Never Paying For Anything

StudioBinder

We don’t agree that the responsibility should always pay on the guy to pay for everything. This isn’t the 1950s anymore!

But at the same time, if he’s sitting back and expecting you to pay for everything, it’s not a promising sign. This is the behavior or a user or freeloader.

11 Red Flag: Constantly Being Late

Shadow and Act

Being late might not seem like a big deal, but when it happens over and over again, it can reveal a lot about a guy’s personality. If he’s always making you wait, then the chances are he doesn’t respect your time and doesn’t value your feelings.

We’re all late sometimes, but when it’s a routine thing, it becomes a red flag.

10 Red Flag: Being Entitled To Things From Her

It’s a huge red flag when a guy acts entitled to things from you. This is especially true if he’s only ever nice when he wants something in return.

If he reminds you that he paid for dinner, so you should be going home with him tonight even if you don’t really feel like it, it may be time to re-evaluate your relationship.

9 Red Flag: Dismissing Her Feelings

The New York Times

Your feelings are valid and you deserve to be in a relationship where your partner acknowledges this, just like you would acknowledge that their feelings are valid.

It’s a red flag when you tell him how you’re feeling and he simply tells you to “get over it” or something equally as infuriating.

8 Red Flag: Being In A Relationship For All His Adult Life

The Vore

This isn’t necessarily a red flag, but it can be. If a guy bounces from relationship to relationship, he’s with a new partner every few months and he’s never single, it likely shows that he doesn’t know how to be alone. Or, he’s afraid to be alone.

Being reliant on relationships like this comes with an array of problems and should be a red flag.

7 Red Flag: Always Having Something Negative To Say About Her Friends/Family

Vogue

None of our families or friends are perfect, but part of being in a relationship is putting up with the people in your partner’s life (unless you have a great reason not to).

If he’s always dissing your family and friends, it could be the start of him turning you against them and isolating you.

6 Red Flag: Refusing To Discuss The Future

Vogue

If you’ve been together for a reasonable amount of time and he still refuses to discuss the future, it’s not a good sign. This could mean that he doesn’t envision a future with you or he’s afraid of a commitment.

When he’s just a fling, it isn’t a big deal. But if you’re in what you think is a long-term relationship, then it is.

5 Don’t Ignore: She Leaves Him Feeling Bad

Movie News

The whole point of a relationship is that it enhances your life experience. It shouldn’t complete you or be the one thing that makes you happy, but it should make you happier.

If your partner puts you in a bad mood every time you see him, something’s not right. And chances are it will get worse.

4 Don’t Ignore: Being Prone To Uncontrollable Emotional Outbursts

Washington Post

We can all lose control of our emotions every now and then. But if you notice that he’s constantly having major emotional outbursts (think a child having a tantrum), it’s not a good sign.

Being unable to control emotions like anger could mean that he’s more likely to become physical with you in the future.

3 Don’t Ignore: Making Threats

Vulture

Threats are never okay in a relationship. Your connection should be about love and trust, not ultimatums and living in a state of fear.

Even if he only makes threats about the little things, it should still be a red flag. The little things tend to get bigger over time.

2 Don’t Ignore: Treating Other People Poorly

Pinterest

You can tell a lot about a person by the way they treat people that they don’t have to be nice to.

He might be nice to you because he’s dating you, but if he’s rude to the wait staff or even strangers on the street, he’s probably not the nicest person.

1 Don’t Ignore: Being Controlling In The Name Of Love

Vic & Walter Thiessen – On Movies…

Love is not about control. It’s a huge red flag if he tries to control you in the name of love, even he starts by trying to gain control of the little things.

As an adult, you have the right to make your own decisions, and anybody trying to control you doesn’t genuinely have your best interests at heart.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

‘Micro-cheating’ is the new dating trend you need to know about

As if the world of dating wasn’t complicated enough, it’s now been revealed your partner could be cheating on you by doing something some might consider relatively harmless.

The concept of cheating is pretty straightforward; when someone in a relationship strays away from home. Yet now, experts at eHarmony and telling us to look out for a partner ‘micro-cheating on you too.

The dating website defines ‘micro-cheating as “a term which encompasses smaller, albeit questionable acts” from a partner.

Think like the social media posts of someone else you’re attracted to, or sliding into their DMs, something tech-savvy millennials seems to feel most strongly about.

“Advances in technology and the multitude of available platforms means that people often feel there is an endless choice. This choice can sometimes lead people to make toxic decisions,” eHarmony dating expert Rachael Lloyd revealed.

“It might start with a bit of flirting online and build towards full-blown emotional affairs in the digital environment. The fallout from these situations can be as devastating as a physical affair.”

She added that a couple of Instagram likes here and there might not seem so bad but it’s the intent behind them you need to consider.

Rachael also suggests setting clear boundaries as soon as possible in a new relationship, so your partner isn’t surprised when you challenge them on being too friendly with others online.

“The modern dating world can be a minefield, but clear communication can really help,” she added.

Why do people cheat?

According to relationship expert Michelle Rose, there are a number of reasons why men and women choose to cheat, with a big one being that they try to destroy what they don’t feel worthy of having in the first place.

“If they’ve got a belief that they’re not really worthy, that they’re not really enough, then they will destroy it because we’ll always live up to our beliefs and our identity,” she told Yahoo Lifestyle previously.

“The closer they get towards love, the more likely they are to do something crazy and destroy it when they actually don’t believe they have it in the first place. Even though externally they’ve got it, they will destroy it.”

Michelle believes that love is one of the biggest fears of the human race because it is a reflection of who we really are.

“The energy of love is so unfamiliar for a lot of people that when they start to go deep they’ll stuff it up, they’ll do something. Because they can only handle the superficial,” she said.

Woman touching the wedding ring on her finger nervously while having coffee and waiting in a cafe.

Relationship expert Louanne Ward claims people can be addicted to love and sex and have no idea that their actions are leaving a trail of destruction and broken hearts behind them.

She added people are often genuinely shocked and heartbroken to discover their spouse has been unfaithful yet, in many cases, there were a number of key signs they simply failed to see.

She recommends looking out for signs of ‘change in behavior’, such as your partner ‘staying back at work late more often than before, having a renewed interest in their appearance, unexplained and secretive social media activity or any other new and different activity that could and should have your radar alerted’.

“Most people will have an inner sense that things are not quite the same and may question their partner about their suspicions,” she said.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

 

Why Your Marriage Will Most Likely End in Divorce (And Why It’s Completely Normal)

Maybe we weren’t all meant to live happily ever after.

What are the most common reasons for divorce and why is the divorce rate so high?

Learning what percentage of marriages end in divorce may make you seriously wonder why.

It’ll make our lives so much better.

Even when standing at the altar, assume marriage isn’t for eternity.

Instead, assume someday you might want out.

And not just you. That person standing there with you, too.

In that world, we’ll have happier marriages with more honest communication and expectations.

And happier divorces, as well. No failure. No gloom. Just a normal, expected outcome.

In our modern world, half of the marriages end in divorce.

We know that. We know divorced people. We couldn’t care less.

Do we go around shaming people thinking of divorce? Or ostracizing divorcees? This is just stating the obvious, right?

Still, we have a hard time embracing that “till death do us part” is a Santa Claus fantasy for grownups – and an often harmful one.

If we can admit that marriage is rarely forever, we’ll save so many from stress, anguish, and the guilt-ridden and shame-inducing delusion that divorce is a failure.

It’s not. It’s typical.

I’m not saying that happy couples should break up.

If you find a soulmate for life, congrats. I’m jealous.

But if you’re an average human and don’t (or can admit you probably won’t) find that forever love, then get rid of the pressure to remain content with just one partner for your whole life.

What do you have to gain?

This is not cold or unromantic.

We genuinely love our partners when we say “I do.”

Many of us still love them even when it’s time for a divorce. Just…not in the same way. Or maybe we don’t love them anymore.

That’s not an indictable offense.

These are normal life changes — not crimes or sins — and they’re no reason to turn feelings of guilt and shame into fire aimed at a partner.

On the contrary, the commonality and inevitability of such life changes is a reason to keep breakups amicable, fair, and even loving.

This is also not making moral or value judgments on the sanctity of marriage, the importance of commitment, or the necessity to continuously work on our relationships.

It’s just trying to provide a common-sense answer to a common-sense question: Should marriage be expected to continue forever?

Forever is a long time.

If we get hitched at, say, 30, and live to say, 80, why, that’s 50 years.

How many relationships — how many anythings — last 50 years?

How many business partnerships?

How many people live in the same house for 50 years? The same city?

How many close friends stay close friends that long?

I know, most consider marriage more important and sacred than such things.

Which is even more reason to view marriage with deep honesty and compassion.

If something’s really sacred, why lie to ourselves about it?

The truth remains: even happy, successful marriages — with couples that do the work and collaborate, forgive and recommit — even they probably aren’t going to be content for 50 years.

And that’s ok. Successful or otherwise, marriages should just…end successfully. They often do.

We see examples of famed “conscious uncouplings” like that of Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin, but also of everyday folks who quietly and amicably move on.

Even with children. Kids today are surrounded by divorce: their social networks are filled with single parents and kids of split families. It’s normal to them.

Of course, kids are unhappy if mom and dad break up, but, if handled properly, they’re not shocked, scandalized, or scarred.

Forever is a nearly unattainable objective, born of bygone eras when marriages were business deals brokered for merging families, finances, or bloodlines.

Or when “till death do us part” was a much briefer journey, when people in their 50s and 60s slowed down and retired from energetic activity, to sit in rocking chairs waiting for the undertaker.

But happily, those days are gone.

We’re going to live to be 80, 90, 100, with, if we’re lucky, active brains and bodies pretty much to the end.

We should be free to pursue happiness throughout our long, healthy lives.

That often means allowing ourselves to start over.

Fresh beginnings. Second, third, or fourth chances.

Unconstrained by antiquated notions about contracts for life.

It’s ok to want that. It’s ok to go for it.

Still, even in modernity, we keep telling ourselves that divorce is a failure or needs to be a war.

But for what, exactly? Judging our lives based on criteria created eons ago by people who thought the sun revolved around the Earth?

I hope marriages last forever. I just know they usually don’t. And I’m good with that.

We’re messy humans. That’s just who we are. And pretending otherwise can do more harm than good.

In today’s world, “till death do us part” may be the dumbest oath ever.

Let’s stop saying it.

The Absolute Dater – Making Online Dating Easy Again

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

How Men And Women Define Cheating Completely Differently

Don’t assume that you and your partner are on the same page.

What do you consider cheating?

Most people (who aren’t in a polyamorous relationship) think that having sex with someone who isn’t their significant other is cheating.

But what about texting and chatting on the phone but keeping it a secret — are you being unfaithful then? How about sexting, photo exchange, or deep kissing — is that OK?

You should have a very clear idea of where it is that you draw the line as far as cheating goes, and once you’ve decided, it’s a good idea to find out your partner’s ideas on infidelity, too … before it becomes a problem.

new study published in Sexual and Relationship Therapy confirmed that men and women often have entirely different ideas about what cheating really means, and that knowing what your partner considers as cheating can be beneficial for your relationship.

“Knowing what your partner believes to be infidelity could potentially save a relationship if both partners understand each other’s perspective, thus making the topic of different infidelity perceptions worthy of research,” the study says.

For the study, researchers had 354 participants (undergraduate students) complete an online questionnaire on infidelity.

The participants were asked to rank different acts from 1 (definitely not cheating) to 4 (definitely cheating) on actions and scenarios like kissing, intercourse, falling in love but not acting on it, fantasizing about having sex with someone but not going through with it, going to a strip club and having a lap dance, and watching porn.

The survey also included questions that were meant to assess the participant’s own characteristics on things like fear of rejection, anxiety, and communication level.

There was no difference between men and women in regards to fear of intimacy and sensitivity to rejection; however, women scored significantly higher than men on communication,

The study found that women, on average, have a greater desire to form and maintain supportive interpersonal relationships. They’re more connected to their relationships than men.

Interestingly, the study found that women are more likely than men to classify both sexual-based and emotional-based acts as cheating, whereas men were found to only consider sexual acts as infidelity.

“An ideal outcome from therapeutic intervention [therapy] would include greater partner understanding and communication, relationship commitment and relationship satisfaction,” the study reads.

If your significant other believes that watching porn is OK but you think it’s a relationship dealbreaker, you need to talk about it before it becomes a problem.

Your relationship will be stronger once you and your partner are on the same page, at least as far as infidelity goes.

The Absolute Dater – Making Online Dating Easy Again

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

How to Hook Up with a Girl Who Has a Boyfriend

Sometimes it seems like all the good ones are taken. Now, you’ve found a girl that you feel a strong connection with and attraction to, but she has a boyfriend. Here are some ideas for how to win her over, ranging from being straightforward to being stealthy. It’s up to you to decide: is all fair in love and war?

Telling Her Your Feelings

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    Evaluate your relationship with her. It’s important to consider whether telling her your feelings is appropriate based on the strength of your relationship.

    • Imagine you tell her. Is your relationship strong enough to handle it if she doesn’t feel the same way, or if she does but decides to stay with her current boyfriend? If yes, it might be worth the risk. If no, weigh your options carefully.
    • If you haven’t known this girl very long, this probably isn’t a good option. She could see your professed feelings as very abrupt or forward.
    • Make a pro/con list to weigh the risks and benefits of telling her your feelings. Also, consider the risks and benefits of not telling her. Is it worth the risk?
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    Plan out what you want to say. Frame this conversation carefully, so she knows you are not making demands of her. Ask a friend to talk out the scenario with you to work out any kinks. Your friend can give you a perspective on your choices of words.
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    Build up your courage. Of course, you’re nervous to tell her your feelings. Not only could this admission change your relationship with this girl, but it could affect your relationship with her boyfriend or other mutual friends if you have them. Fear signals that the outcome is important to you. Once you’ve decided you want to go ahead with expressing yourself, use your fear to motivate you, rather than deter you.
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    Tell her. Once you’ve built up your courage, go for it.

    • When you’re alone with her, say something along the lines of: “Caitlin, I know that you’re dating Sam, and I don’t want to mess anything up for you, but I’ve started to have feelings for you. I want you to know.” If you think she reciprocates the feelings, you can add, “I’ve sensed that the attraction might be mutual, and I want to clear the air.”
    • If she has been giving you vibes that she’s interested in, it’s important that she knows so that she doesn’t keep giving you mixed signals.
  5. Respect her response. You’ve weighed the risks and benefits of your decision, and you knew that she might not respond favorably. It is important, especially if you want to remain friends, to accept and respect her response.

    • She may tell you that she does not feel the same way. Rejection is painful, but it is one of the ways that we reduce our ego and grow.
    • She may tell you that she does have feelings for you, but that she wants to stay with her boyfriend because they have a strong relationship and she also has feelings for him. This is harder to accept because it feels like there is a glimmer of hope, but once she tells you her decision to stay with her boyfriend, you need to move on.
    • Don’t torture yourself. Waiting around and hoping that she’ll change your mind will only be a waste of your time. If you accept her response, you will be better able to move forward and search for a romantic connection elsewhere.
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Seducing Her Stealthily

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    Establish yourself as a constant in her life. If she only sees you around every once in a while, you won’t be on her mind that often. If you want a shot with her, you need to see her regularly

    • Join her friend group. Ingratiate yourself to her best friends. If her friends hold you in high regard, chances are she will, too. Being part of her friend group ensures that you will be invited to events that she will be attending.
    • Get her phone number. Wait for a natural opportunity to ask for her number. You were having a conversation and it was cut off? Ask for her number so you can continue talking. You’re planning a get-together for your friend group? Perfect reason to make sure you have her number.
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    Highlight your good qualities. Make sure she sees that you’re a positive person to have in her life. Do you have a great sense of humor? Are you empathetic and open to talking about your feelings?  Are you particularly creative? Slip these traits into your conversation with her or her friends. She’ll start to see what she’s missing out on.
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    Find the weak points in her current relationship. No relationship is perfect, and there are likely things she’d change about her boyfriend if she could.

    • Casually ask her about her relationship. As she grows to trust you, she’ll share more information with you. If she tells you that her boyfriend never takes the time to hear about her day, don’t tell her that you’d always make time to listen to her if you were in his shoes. Store this information. Another day, make sure you ask her how her day is going and actively listen.
    • If you are hanging out with her friends while she’s not around, pay attention if they are gossiping. They may say something about her relationship that you can use to play up your strengths in contrast to her boyfriend’s weaknesses.
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    Make your move. You’ve set the stage so that she sees you in good light. You can decide if your move will be verbal or physical. Will you tell her you’re attracted to her or just lean in for the kiss? Wait for a time when the two of you are alone and the mood is light.
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    Be prepared for her reaction. Though you’ve been contemplating this for a while, it could be totally out of the blue for her.

    • If she tells you she’s attracted to you, too, give her some time to decide if she wants to act on that. Don’t pressure her. That will make her withdraw from your friendship and undo the work that you’ve done to show yourself off.
    • If you physically hook up with her, recognize that there will be consequences. In all likeliness, she’ll feel guilty, and might even be angry with you for disrespecting her relationship status. You will seriously damage any relationship you have with her boyfriend, and likely with mutual friends.
      • If you make this move and she tells her boyfriend, you will probably be cut out of her life unless they decide to break up.
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    Ask her for a decision. Regardless of whether you expressed your feelings emotionally or physically, give her time to process her feelings. She may decide that she wants to give a relationship with you a shot. She may decide that she wants to stay with her boyfriend. Once she makes that decision, that’s it. Trying to convince her to change her mind will only make her put up walls. 

Waiting Patiently

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    Decide if she is someone worth waiting for. You could be waiting around for a long time for this relationship to end if it ever does. Even then, you might have to watch her go through a string of relationships if she moves quickly from one relationship to the next.

    • Consider her current relationship. If she’s in a strong relationship, she is not likely to leave it, even if she likes you, too.
    • Though it’s not romantic, scientifically there’s no such thing as “the one.” Do you want to spend your life waiting around for a girl who is interested in another person? There are plenty of other girls looking for someone like you.
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    Foster a strong friendship with her. If you care enough to wait for her, disregard Method 2. Don’t manipulate her feelings. Be present in her life and let her know that you are someone she can trust. She may drift in and out of relationships, but she will keep you around.

    • If you genuinely care about her, nurturing a friendship with her will come naturally. Make small gestures. Remember her birthday and how she likes her coffee. If you notice she’s having a rough day, ask her if she wants to talk about it.
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    Wait until her current relationship ends. She will know you care for her well-being if you respect her relationship. Don’t try to break it up.

    • If she is happy in her relationship, she will not thank you for critiquing her boyfriend or finding ways to get their relationship on rocky ground. Even if she is unhappy in the relationship if she realizes your motive she will see it as manipulative.
    • If you truly care for her, you will want her to be happy, even if it’s not with you.
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    Express your feelings to her in a timely but respectful time frame. Once she and her boyfriend break up, give her time to grieve that relationship and heal from the hurt. Don’t wait too long, though, or she may move on to another relationship before you get your chance.

Tips

  • Don’t be too clingy or she will try to distance herself from you.
  • Make absolutely certain that this girl is worth it. So often we want the impossible relationship because we are too afraid to find a relationship that might actually happen.
  • If you step on her boyfriend’s toes, it will be all over. He will be more protective of their relationship, and you might even be cut out.
  • If you realize you’re stuck in the friend zone, move on. There are other great girls who don’t have boyfriends.

Warnings

  • If she breaks up with her boyfriend for you, someday she may break up with you for someone else.
  • You can seriously damage relationships by trying to break a couple up. Not only might you ruin your relationship with her and her boyfriend, but you also may hurt relationships with mutual friends, classmates, or coworkers.
  • If you succeed in hooking up with her and she finds out about your plot, you could jeopardize your relationship.
  • In Method 2, you will be manipulating your own crush for your own selfish wants. If you are willing to do this, you may not care about her as much as you claim to.

The Absolute Dater – Making Online Dating Easy Again

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

5 Signs Your Innocent Friendship Has Turned Into a Full-Blown Emotional Affair

Emotional affairs often begin as non-sexual friendships.

What is an emotional affair? How did your innocent flirting with someone you claim to be just good friends with turn into emotional cheating and infidelity?

I cannot count how many couples have come into my life with their relationships in shambles — with one spouse saying that their partner had an affair, with the other denying an affair occurred often proclaiming that they are “just really good friends” and that they “never had sex”.

So…was it an emotional affair?

In a monogamous relationship, people share both emotional and sexual information that is exclusive to their partners. They expose their weaknesses, mistakes, and innermost feelings.

We build trust with the other person because we make ourselves vulnerable. These conversations are valued and treasured by us because we know this information is reserved for us and only we have access to these aspects of our partner.

Emotional affairs often begin as non-sexual friendships. We confide in our friends perhaps because we feel our partner lacks understanding or they are unavailable.

This is particularly common with couples where one or both partners is a busy executive. When we lack access to our mate and need an outlet to talk to, we turn to our friends. And there are the always available social media, where platonic relationships can easily take root as deep and emotional friendships.

One important point here is that a majority of the emotional affairs begin as harmless friendships without any intention or plan to develop the relationship beyond that of a platonic friendship.

Unfortunately, we all have limited time, energy, and emotional resources available — and when these finite commodities are expended on the “friendship” rather than your partner relationship, there is a disconnection where the partner has cheated, emotionally.

An emotional affair is one where a person falls in love with another person but the relationship is not sealed with a sexual act. Over time, if the emotional affair continues (perhaps you flirt without realizing), it often leads to a sexual affair.

Emotional affairs can be devastating and destructive to your current relationship and family. In fact, emotional affairs can cause as much (or more) damage as physical affairs, but be more devious since they are less obvious.

Why? Because it leads to secrecy, deception, and is established primarily to gain an emotional high or to run away from negative experiences within the actual marriage itself.

One of my clients recounts, “I was so much more shattered by my husband finding solace and love with her. I could have more easily forgiven a one night stand because she wouldn’t have meant anything to him but as an object for sex.”

When someone falls in love and seeks such intimacy with that other person, when the time spent with the partner is superficial because their heart longs to be with someone else, the underlying trust is shaken.

Casual flirting or a crush don’t even begin to cover the irreparable damage such kind of “affairs” cause.

So, are you having an emotional affair or are you just friends? Are you on the path to an affair, even though nothing has physically escalated…yet?

Here are 5 signs you’re having an emotional affair (and you need to stop).

1. You have conversations you’re not too comfortable with your spouse knowing about

Do you find yourself hiding your phone (or getting a separate one), making sure your email and phone passwords are secret? Maybe you’re thinking “I’m glad my partner isn’t (reading, watching, finding) this (call, text, picture).”

These are signals the “friendship” boundaries have already been crossed.

2. You find yourself daydreaming or making plans with this person

Examine your mindshare. Does this person occupy your thoughts unceasingly? Are they on your mind when you go to sleep, when you awake in the morning, and during most of the day? Whenever you are alone, do you think about them and seek opportunities to speak with them?

In a way, you begin to idealize this person. You may become more discontent with your partner and share concerns and problems with your friend while becoming more distant with your spouse. At times, you may even have disappointment that your spouse doesn’t do things like your friend does.

You, then, begin to find faults in your spouse for habits, beliefs, or approaches to situations that were never an issue and have always been present in the relationship.

Your tolerance for your mate is then less and they begin to irritate you leading to the belief that this person understands much better you’re your spouse ever did or could.

If you find yourself feeling more connected to your friend rather than your own spouse, then clearly some changes need to be made.

3. You’ve lost interest in being intimate with your spouse

It is a fallacy you think that affairs begin in the bedroom. Affairs actually begin in the mind.

First, emotional involvement often leads to our seeing our friend as having few, if any, flaws. This leads to our partner’s flaws becoming considerably more obvious leading to our being critical of our spouse and their habits and mentally comparing them to our friend.

While looking your best for work or going out is not an issue, the action of doing so for a specific person is entirely different. The action of being visually attractive to another person begins in the mind.

Expending considerable emotional energy and thought into dressing up for a friend is a signal that the relationship has a deeper meaning than that of traditional friendship.

Once you dress the part do you let your imagination play out romantic fantasies about your friend? Daydreaming and planning a new life with our friend is often the next step in the progression of an emotional affair.

This mental scenario with our friend is beginning to evolve into a relationship that we feel would be far superior to that of our partner. Directing your energy into cultivating a fantasy is not far from the fantasy transforming into a reality.

4. You’re spending less time with your spouse

Are you spending less time with your mate since the relationship with your friend has become a more significant part of your life? Are you are sharing personal problems, feelings, and thoughts with your friend instead of your partner?

Do you create ways to talk with or be alone with your friend? Do you stage opportunities where it is probable you will run into your friend and then the opportunity to speak with them appears organic? Do you find excuses to talk with them?

Whenever you have something exciting in your life or anything good or bad happens, do you rush to this person to share?

Whether it is communication, your daily life stuff, affection, thoughts, time or focus, does your spouse get less of your mind share while your friend gets more?

While there is nothing wrong with having a good friend, the problem comes when you begin to share less with your mate.

If everything that you used to give to your partner has become considerably less or completely transferred to this new person these are warning signs that an emotional affair is in the works.

5. You keep secrets and lie

Are you keeping the friendship with the other person a secret? Do you minimize the amount of time you spend with your friend to others? Do you omit details about meetings, private lunches, or phone calls?

Do you guard passwords, access to your phone and social media accounts from being seen by your partner? Do you delete evidence from your phone, lie about your whereabouts or deny having communication with your friend?

These are also hallmarks of an emotional affair.

Now that you’ve realized that you’re on the brink of an affair without meaning to, what should you do next?

It is important to remember that even when such affairs do not cross the line and reach the physical stage, the impact is equally damaging and could put your marriage in a danger zone.

The intimacy and chemistry that is the core of an emotional affair have a deeper emotional intensity because you happen to be emotionally invested in it.

An emotional affair is bad, it can slowly disconnect you from your partner and you won’t even realize it. If you have such a kind of friendship with the opposite sex, cut the relationship ASAP. Otherwise, it will take you down the road of a physical affair very soon.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

This Is the Only Real Way to Know If Your Partner Is Micro-Cheating

Is micro-cheating a real thing?

What is micro cheating? How do you define it? Is it just as bad as “normal” cheating in relationships?

Plus, how can you communicate relationship boundaries when it comes to this kind of emotional infidelity?

Micro cheating can be defined in many ways:

Cosmopolitan says that it’s the “small things you do that could have whispers of infidelity, without actually being unfaithful.”

Time magazine defines it as “a set of behaviors that flirts with the line between faithfulness and unfaithfulness.”

And Urban Dictionary says that it’s “small acts considered disloyal within a relationship. Nothing too serious, but not innocent either.”

Because there are so many definitions of micro-cheating, a whole lot of behaviors may or may not even qualify — a raised eyebrow, a furtive smile, lightly touching someone on the arm, browsing profiles on hookup apps but not actually hooking up, chatting with an ex on social media, checking out a little porn here and there, sexting, webcamming with strangers, going to a strip club with the guys (or gals), or getting a massage when away on business.

What is considered cheating? Where do we draw between micro-cheating and actually being unfaithful?

Here’s a thought: Maybe there’s no line to draw. Maybe cheating is cheating.

Maybe calling a behavior that violates one’s relationship boundaries micro-cheating is simply a way of justifying that behavior.

Or maybe there is a meaningful difference between micro-cheating and emotional cheating.

Cheating is “the breaking of trust that occurs when you keep intimate, meaningful secrets from your partner.”

Notice that this definition of infidelity does not name specific sexual or romantic behaviors.

Instead, it focuses on what matters most in romantic relationships — mutual trust.

If you’ve engaged in sexual or romantic behaviors that violate the trust in your relationship, you’ve cheated.

My definition also suggests that a list of behaviors that do and don’t qualify as cheating depends on the couple.

If you and your partner have mutually agreed that looking at porn is not an issue, so be it. And who cares what your grandmother thinks about it? This is your relationship to define, not hers.

If, however, you and your significant other have mutually agreed that porn is not OK, then plugging in that flash drive filled with your favorite videos is cheating.

Interestingly, for betrayed partners, it’s usually not the specifics of what you’ve done that causes the most pain.

What hurts the most is the lying, the manipulation, and the keeping of secrets from the cheating spouse — the lies of omission.

When you engage in sexual and romantic behaviors that violate relationship boundaries (including marriage vows), you’ve cheated. Period.

And when you lie about that behavior and keep it secret, you’re compounding the damage.

That said, maybe micro-cheating really is a thing — a less-damaging form of cheating.

My definition of micro-cheating centers not on the specifics of the “sextracurricular” act, but on how deeply that behavior and any lies and secrets surrounding that behavior impacts the betrayed partner when the behavior comes to light.

In other words, how profoundly is relationship trust affected by the act and by covering up the act?

If you find yourself now wondering what constitutes cheating (micro or full-blown) in your relationship, initiate a discussion with your partner about what behaviors are and are not acceptable.

When you both can mutually define your relationship boundaries in this way, cheating is much less likely.

Moreover, by being open and honest with one another about your sexual desires and limits, you can develop a deeper sense of emotional intimacy and relationship trust.

In short, you strengthen your intimate connection.

The more open and honest you and your partner are with each other, the more intimacy you will have. So give this conversation a go.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

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