When cheating becomes cheating – The Honest Monogamist

By Aubrie Smith, co-editor-in-chief.

Cheating has become all too common in today’s society. W e’ve all been cheated on, or at least know someone who has. I personally have had four serious relationships in my lifetime; three of them ended because of the other person cheating.

While grabbing a drink with some friends the other night, one of my friends graciously said, “Did D really cheat though?”

I was so taken aback by the question. The answer was so painfully obvious to me: Yes, he abso-frickin’-lutely cheated on me.

For some clarification: My boyfriend at the time was “best friends” with his ex. I quickly found him lying about his whereabouts, saying he was at parties and then never remembering who was there, other friends not remember seeing him, etc. One night, after catching him in a lie, I asked for his phone – something I’ve always been against. His reply was, “If I give you my phone, you’ll break up with me.”

Not only had he been texting his ex every single day, but he had spent a few nights with her. He swore that “cuddling” was the only thing that happened. When I asked if they hooked up, he said, “Of course not, I don’t cheat.”

But to me, he did cheat. Spending the night with an ex and cuddling, in my opinion, is undoubtedly cheating.

My friends, though, had an entire different opinion, and that’s when it clicked: Cheating is ambiguous. It’s defined differently by every individual. Cheating can simply meaning hiding something from your partner. It can range from texting another individual every day, behind your significant other’s back, to actually hooking up.

The scary thing is that you may not know you’ve crossed the line until you actually cross it. You never know how fragile your relationship is until you break it. And, if you cross that line, is it repairable? Maybe not.

Know your boundaries. You should be able to define your partner’s version of cheating just as easily as you can define your own. More importantly, know that they don’t have to be the same definition. If you both see different things as cheating, that is perfectly fine as long as you understand that you can’t cross their line. Respect the cheating boundaries, even if you don’t agree with them. Cheating is something that, in most cases, is not forgiven, so make sure you understand the line before you accidentally cross it.

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