Aug 25, 2020
Brian Mayer talks emotional infidelity. This is a very cloudy
topic that many people don’t have a good handle on. With
physical or sexual infidelity, the issue is very clear because it
involves something that can be clearly seen. With emotional
infidelity it is often a matter of the heart which can often be
hidden. Today we will talk about how best to understand when
this is an issue that needs to be dealt with in your
relationship. We hope you are inspired by today’s
message. For more information and additional resources please
visit our website at http://www.theremarriedlife.com
- What is “emotional infidelity” or “emotional
cheating?” Well the dictionary really doesn’t define
this and so a lot of what it is can be extremely
- Sexual or Physical infidelity can be much more clear
and easily identified because it involves touch as small
as just brushing up against someone to rubbing, hand holding,
hugging, kissing, and then on up to sexual acts. Pretty clear
- For the most part it is hard to argue against physical
infidelity although I have seen it be done when a couple
argues over hugs that are given to others for example.
- With emotional infidelity there are some parts that are
relatively clear but others that are not. The parts
that are not clear usually reside in the mind and heart of the one
carrying on a relationship with someone other than their
significant other like a spouse.
- So let’s first take a bit of stab at the definition of
emotional infidelity. In my opinion, emotional
infidelity occurs when one person feels a romantic attraction to
another that is cultivated through continued thinking about this
other person in a romantic or sexual way. It also can include
spending time with this person while engaged in conversations that
can fuel this romantic feeling all while the current significant
other is being and/or feeling neglected.
- So as you can see this is a very complicated definition
because again it is taking into account the actions and thoughts of
the person engaged in an outside relationship, but it can
also include the other partner’s thoughts and beliefs about it as
- So let’s take a look at those three components a bit more in
- Let’s first talk about some actions that might be
construed as emotional infidelity to someone looking on
the outside. Now remember I said the word “might” and so we
will later discuss what needs to happen with sometimes unclear
- Going on lunch, dinner, or coffee meetings where a bulk
of the conversation involves things other than a business
or project type work.
- Texting or talking on the phone again when the majority
of the time is spent on other topics outside a specific
reason that it has brought you together like a business deal or
some sort of project.
- Discussing intimate details of your current
relationships especially when you spend more time talking about
what you don’t like or are unhappy with in your current
- Ways of thinking and feeling that can signs of
emotional infidelity. Now unfortunately, this
is area that can be very gray and where most couples may
argue. As mentioned, this can be a bit easier to hide or
- Thinking about someone else in a romantic and sexual
way especially with little desire to stop and also fantasizing
about the future with this person. The future
doesn’t necessarily have to mean that you want end your current
relationship for it to be considered infidelity.
- In addition to the thoughts being directed at someone else,
you might find that your thoughts are dimming toward your
current spouse. Like you might not be as open to
hugs and kisses or other moments of closeness with your spouse
because of these thoughts and feelings that are directed
- It is also important to take into consideration of the
spouse on the other end who might be subject to the potential
emotional infidelity of their partner. So with that
here are some things you both can do before emotional infidelity
becomes a problem.
- Allow discussion to be had when you are hurt by
something that was done or said in your relationship. When
either of you brings a hurt, you should respond to in a
non-defensive or non-dismissing way. When you
respond defensively or dismissively, you may invite your partner to
close off and find someone else who agrees.
- You should each define your boundaries for what you
will and will not be comfortable with. So maybe you
might be uncomfortable with any kind of coffee, lunch or dinner
just between your partner and someone else. For some maybe it
is just the dinner. Whatever it is clearly communicate your
- Take some time to consider your partners
feelings. When I say this I am thinking more about
the partner who is considered entertaining time with someone else
in that you should consider your partners feelings and give heavy
weight to those feelings.
- If you cannot come to agreement on boundaries, then you
must decide if these are deal breakers. Or can you
live with them and not have resentment and bitterness.
- Emotional infidelity for lots of people is just as or
even more hurtful than physical or sexual infidelity.
Hopefully it does not happen, but if it does it is my hope
that the two of you can discuss it and restore your emotional
connection with each other that has been surely broken.
Thanks For Listening!
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As always remember that marriage is not something you have, it
is something you do. Talk to you next week unless you are
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about a minute! Take care.