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When Does a Crush Become Emotional Cheating?

A few months back, one of my married friends admitted to having an innocent crush on one of her co-workers. Since then, his name has come up more and more and I finally had to ask her what the deal was. Had her innocent crush turned into a secret fling without me knowing? She claims that nothing has happened; they’re just really good friends.

In my opinion, her constant interactions with him and his presence in her life seems to have become the kind of crush that crosses the line — becoming emotional cheating. But when I tried to explain this to her, I realized I couldn't figure out exactly what makes a crush turn from silly to serious. What do you think? When does an innocent crush become more?


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vabeachbum vabeachbum 6 years
I agree with everyone who says that anything you can't do or say in front of your SO counts as cheating. It's one thing to think Bob in the next cubicle is kind of cute and maybe flirt a bit, it's another when you are finding excuses to spend time alone with Bob or are rebuffing your SO because you can't stop thinking about Bob. Also, I agree with those who say it's indicative of bigger problems in the marriage... I have a friend who has basically had emotional affairs all over the place because she feels her husband doesn't pay enough attention to her. Her marriage has some serious issues which neither of them seem to want to do anything about... and it's causing extreme tension in our group of friends because she keeps turning to some of the other guys for comfort/emotional support and then getting pissed when the "dump" her because she won't be physically intimate or leave her husband. She's also extremely cruel and rude to any girl who has the gall to date a guy she had an emotional affair with because she sees that girl as having "stolen" the guy from her. So, this has led to several awkward and sticky situations. If your friend is really having problems in her relationship and that's why she's looking elsewhere, it won't be long before she sets her sights on someone within the group. If you value your friendship with this girl and the group of friends she's part of, I would confront her and rake her over the coals... otherwise, it will lead to much bigger issues.
AleWebster AleWebster 9 years
I don't know, she knows the limits, if she wants to cross them she knows exactly what she's getting into.
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
I think that it's emotional cheating as soon as you realize that you have a crush and you think the other person feels the same way. If it's completely one sided and you keep things friendly but not too friendly than everything is okay. If you're finding ways to spend time alone together or you think about this person when you're with your S.O. than problems are coming.
sb123 sb123 9 years
i'm not going to lie. I am doing this right now. i have a huge emotional connection with someone other than my SO.
girlie871 girlie871 9 years
I agree with everyone that once the person starts acting sneaky or hiding things from tehir partner theyre acting like a cheater, even if tehre is nothing physical. Pixiedust, I think you hit it right on the nail, If a guy starts to share his relationship with that other person it still feels like cheating. "It becomes emotional cheating when you start telling that person feelings that you aren't sharing with your Significant Other. If you give that emotion to someone else, it immediately affects your relationship even if your SO doesn't know what's going on. It makes an uncomfortable distance grow in between you".
gummybears123 gummybears123 9 years
another sign could be that you want to see your crush more than your significant other.
gooniette gooniette 9 years
I think it could be indicative of a problem in her marriage. Yes, people have harmless crushes and see some 'manjoyment' every once in a while (hello Popsugar!), but they usually don't start looking elsewhere for emotional connection if they are happily married.
i-am-elle i-am-elle 9 years
If you feel the need to hide something from your SO, I believe you have crossed the line.
petite42 petite42 9 years
I agree - Anything you won't say or do in front of your S.O. As for what to do about this friend, it's a tough one. On the one hand, sometimes just mentioning you have a crush has a way of bursting the bubble and putting it into harmless perspective. On the other hand, if she's gushing on and on... and it's getting worse, not better... then you might have fallen into the "enabling friend" trap. Because you will listen and she can gush on and on to you. You know this is happening when she'll find any excuse to drop his name into the conversation. I had a friend like this, and finally I had to tell her: "Whether something IS or ISN'T going on with this guy, I just can't hear about it anymore. I don't think it's healthy to indulge you by listening." And she did stop. And then months later her marriage completely imploded.
indielove indielove 9 years
"I think the moment you start to do or say things that you wouldn't want your significant other to see or hear (or your friends, for that matter), you've crossed the line. When you start to hide things..." I agree. Crushes is normal but should remain harmless...don't get too close, you'd surely get burned in the end.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
ima and shia! ima and shia! :ROTFL: no touch, no foul.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 9 years
I like the "anything one won't say or do in front of their SO" approach. But if she has a crush, then so be it. We're so hard on ourselves as it is. If it's truly just a little giddiness and she's not acting on it, then oh well. I'm pretty much expecting to have crushes throughout my life, even if I do get married. We don't shut our brains or hearts down, and it's best just to acknowledge it and move on. If we call it all cheating then we're destined for feeling of guilt and inadequacy that we shouldn't need to deal with. We're human.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 9 years
I agree -- anything one won't say or do in front of their SO is considered cheating.
Sun_Sun Sun_Sun 9 years
i agree with sunshower83- as soon as u do or say something u wouldnt want ur SO to hear or know about, u've crossed the line.
Leanne1078 Leanne1078 9 years
It becomes emotional cheating when you start telling that person feelings that you aren't sharing with your significant other. Especially when you are talking about your relationship to your crush. If you give that emotion to someone else, it immediately affects your relationship even if your SO doesn't know what's going on. It makes an uncomfortable distance grow in between you. Even if you don't ever do anything physical, it can totally destroy what you have built with your SO.
bbkf bbkf 9 years
I think as soon as you start lying about or hiding your interactions, it's no longer innocent. A coworker at my previous job had a big crush on me and I'll admit it was fun to tease him a bit, but my husband was completely aware of everything (the three of us even went to dinner once), and once I switched jobs, I never spoke to or thought of him again.
DearSugar DearSugar 9 years
Hi Sunshowers83, I think you're right — it has a lot to do with whether or not you don't want your SO to hear what you say or see what you do.
sunshowers83 sunshowers83 9 years
I wanted to add, if I were you, I would call her on it. MAKE her feel guilty, because that's what she needs to snap out of her little fantasy world. She would feel a million times worse if her husband caught them and her marriage ended up destroyed over a silly crush.
Alisha_Stiletto Alisha_Stiletto 9 years
I think she's crossed into Emotional Cheating world. I think its sad really that people forget what they have and allow their eyes/minds to stray. And then when they get burned, and lose what they have, they want to cry. I never understood that kind of behavior, but its plagued humans forever and ever. Hence the saying "You dont know what you've got til its gone..." At the end of the day, we should treat people the way we want to be treated. And if marriage/monogamous relationships no longer work for us, we should inform the people we are in the relationship with, sever ties and move on.
sunshowers83 sunshowers83 9 years
I think the moment you start to do or say things that you wouldn't want your significant other to see or hear (or your friends, for that matter), you've crossed the line. When you start to hide things... I had a friend who became very close with one of her guy friends. They spent every spare minute of their time together and she talked about him all the time. She bragged about how hot he was as if she was his proud girlfriend. One night we all went out to a club and she was all over him, sitting on his lap, dirty dancing, and we saw her hand creep over his crotch a couple times. We had long suspected something was going on, but she denied it vehemently and swore it was all innocent. "It's just a silly crush," she told me once. However, when pictures of her and this guy ended up on Facebook, she made the poster take them down. She didn't want her boyfriend to see them. A week later, one of our friends caught them making out. He never told her what he saw. Eventually, the guy moved away, and to this day she still thinks she pulled one over on all of us. Even if they never got physical, she was still unfaithful all the way. She knew it too, but I guess she figured as long as she could fool everyone else she could continue fooling herself.
supermommie supermommie 9 years
Careful, careful. It's a slippery slope. You catch two people at the wrong (or right) time and it can turn into what you didn't think it would. It's best to slow down and keep it platonic. Super Mommie
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