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You Asked: Is it the Same as "Cheating?"

You Asked: Is it the Same as "Cheating?"

Dear Sugar--

I found out recently that my husband was spending his lunch hour with a female co-worker. They don't actually eat together, rather they walked "for exercise." He told me that he supplies her with advice as she always was complaining about her boss and some guy that she liked. On days when I would call him to see if he could have lunch with me, he lied and said he could not take a lunch break. This obviously was a low blow when I later found out that for MONTHS he had been with her during their lunch hours "walking." He said he did not tell me of her as he knew I would not agree to it. So, isn't this the same as cheating? Even if they did not do anything physical, I am still just as hurt. --Betrayed Brianna

To see DEARSUGAR's answer

Dear Betrayed Brianna --

The word cheating means to be deceived, tricked, or fooled, so regardless if anything physical happened between your hubby and his co-worker, his lying is the most hurtful thing of all if you ask me. Since I wasn't a fly on the wall during their walks, or know the ins and outs of your relationship, the fact that he covered up this relationship leads me to believe that he does in fact have something to hide here. Are there problems at home that you can pin point and start working on to make him feel like he doesn't need to turn away from you? Are you having a hard time communicating with him?

Everyone has their own views on opposite sex friendships, but you have every right to be upset by his dishonesty, especially when he said he didn't have lunch time for you but did for her. Emotional cheating can be just as hurtful, if not more destructive than physical cheating, so a serious talk is in order. It's clear there is a void in your marriage so perhaps you should think about seeing a marriage counselor if you don't feel comfortable broaching the topic on your own. Regardless of your decision, demanding honesty from your partner is a must. Good luck to you.


Join The Conversation
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 10 years
Like Dr Phil said "anything that you wouldnt do in front of your partner with someone else , like chat on the internet, lunches, cheating"
barjar1122 barjar1122 10 years
He must have a feeling that it was inappropriate too or he wouldnt have lied. Trust is a hard thing to regain, good luck.
junebrug junebrug 10 years
I may be the lone dissenter, but...oh well. Yes, it was very wrong of him to life to you and it is a red flag. But something you said in your post struck me, he said he didn't tell you he had this friend because you wouldn't have agreed to it. Is he right? If it's platonic, why exactly would you have not agreed to it? IMHO, you have a much bigger problem here than her. Remember when you were a teenager what you had to say to get out of the house and just have a little fun? Sometimes you had to lie. You loved your parents but wanted to spend time with someone more fun because they were worried about you, didn't really trust you or your friends, overreacted...sound familiar? If he's treating you like his mother, you might ask yourself if you're treating him like a child. Men don't want the hot woman they're with to turn into mean Mommy. There ain't nothing sexy about mean Mommy. And just like a child, the more you forbid him to do something, the more he's going to want to do it. First I'd make sure nothing happened and that he knows there will be no lies between you, then make at an at-home lunch date with him. Greet him wearing nothing but a smile. You think he's going to miss walking wih...what was her name again?
intensebandgeek intensebandgeek 10 years
I would be really pissed! Good luck and be careful.
Marci Marci 10 years
It doesn't sound kosher that he lied, and it sounds like he lied fairly often. No one lies for no reason, and more often than not it's to hide something. I agree that you shouldn't confront this woman. The issue is with your husband. And he should be aware that he broke the trust.
geekyPOP geekyPOP 10 years
this sucks, there's no excuse for it. it feels like the guy took half of your heart and gave it to some girl you'll never ever want to be in the same room with and he thinks its unfair of you to be mad. i'm going through the same thing. it hurts.
Greggie Greggie 10 years
I completely agree to disregard the "confront the woman" advice. The other woman did nothing wrong - for all we know, he lied to her as well and said you were fine with it. The only thing that will come of that is you'll end up validating his need to lie to you and make her think you're crazy.
jennifer76 jennifer76 10 years
I agree with FB1977. I used to go out for drinks after work with a couple of guys from the office on a regular basis. But my husband knew them and knew what I was up to and wasn't worried about it. The problem here is that he lied to you. I can see why he might choose not to mention it if not questioned - although I *don't* agree with it - but outright lying to you about not being able to take a lunch break is a different story. Under no circumstances should you confront the woman. What has she done wrong? She's gone for a lunchtime walk with a coworker. Besides, how would you feel about your husband causing a scene with your own coworkers? Everybody in this situation is an adult and only responsible for their own behavior. You need to talk to him and let him know how you feel. I don't believe you have the right to tell another adult who they can and cannot lunch with. But you do have a right to expect honesty from your husband. The flip side to that is that he has a right to expect a reasonable reaction from you when he is honest. If someone has reason to believe their spouse will flip their lid even over innocent things, it's understandable that they'd prefer not to subject themselves to that. (Not saying that's what happened here, but seems pertinent.)
dharmalove dharmalove 10 years
I can totally accept a man being friends with the opposite sex, but the fact that he lied about it and didnt tell you is really deceitful and shady. If there was truly nothing to worry about and it was innocent enough, why not tell you from the get go??! He knew you wouldn't agree with it? Then why do it??! If a man is considering doing something that his wife wouldnt agree with, wouldnt a good husband not do it?
vanyvrgs vanyvrgs 10 years
Lying is certainly not good, but he may have been worried based on how you reacted. The issue is with your husband not with the woman, so please I ask you to dismiss the advice given to go confront the woman, you will look like a crazy fool. Talk to your husband, tell him you are really hurt not only that he lied but that he apparently prefered to take a lunch with her instead of going to actual lunch with you and that you want to get to the bottom of it. Ask him if he has feelings for her and how although you do not mind him walking with a friend, had he originally been forthcoming it would not have been an issue. Good luck.
MegLahr MegLahr 10 years
I went throguh the same thing recently and it hurts... bad. It happened a few weeks ago and it still stings but I'm looking at it as an opportunity to revamp my marriage. We talk every night, make time for eachother and number one here is that we're honest. I will wake him up in the middle of the night if it's getting to me and he sits up and talks to me and calms me down and we discuss everything. Then we cuddle kiss and go back to sleep.
marthalilian126 marthalilian126 10 years
If he lied to you in order to spend time with her, that to me is a serious red flag. If there was nothing to hide, he would have told you the truth and scheduled a lunch date with you the next day. Additionally, to spend a full hour with someone everyday is a bit over the top. Particularly if that person is of the opposite sex. If I were you, I would tell him how you feel. Not only is his relationship with her inappropriate (considering he's a married man) but the fact that he lied says a lot about his character.
tundrababe tundrababe 10 years
I agree with Dear Sugar. The fact that he lied about it makes it bad. You two need to have a talk about what's okay with you and what isn't.
ReverendZelda ReverendZelda 10 years
Since you and your spouse are supposed to be best friends and then you find out that he'd rather spend his lunch hour with some hussy and lie about it then have lunhc with you then tell you that you wouldn't understand I'd call it cheating. I'd also kick him right in the butt if I were you.
c0rkie c0rkie 10 years
LaLaLaurie06 LaLaLaurie06 10 years
emotional cheating SUCKS!! good advice, dearsugar.
Greggie Greggie 10 years
The fact that he lied automatically makes it suspicious. In general, I'd say the situation wouldn't qualify. I've never been one to believe that men and women can't be "just friends," as my husband and I both have many friends of the opposite sex that we see alone. And yes, your husband is the one that needs to make things right.
FB1977 FB1977 10 years
I agree with DearSugar. There's nothing wrong with going to lunch w/a co-worker, as I had a regular (male) lunch date at my old job. However, my BF had met him and I talked about our lunches all the time. The issue here is his lieing, and why he felt the need to lie. That is what he must realize is totally unacceptable. I feel your pain - lieing is the worst, in my opinion.
cubadog cubadog 10 years
To be honest I can see his side to not telling you the whole truth (we have all done it in relationships) because he knew you would not agree to it so not only do you as a couple have a problem with open, honest communication but there are trust issues. Instead of attacking this woman at work you need to talk to your husband as he is the one not taking control of his relationship with her. He needs to be the one to tell her to back off.
vmruby vmruby 10 years
I'm not sure your husband is cheating but it sounds like it could be a possibility. What i do know is that if my husband ever turned me down for a lunch date, only to go out with another woman it would surely set off all kinds of warning bells in my head, not to mention how deeply hurt and betrayed i would feel knowing that he had lied to me about it.Approach your husband with what you found out and let him know how you feel.If it turns out that he is cheating then you need to decide if your marriage is worth saving(couseling is a great idea) or you can walk away and start a new life with someone else who deserves you and will put you first. I will be thinking of you and hoping for your sake that this is all just a huge misunderstanding. Good Luck!!!
books-and-shoes books-and-shoes 10 years
Wow, I can completely empathize with how you must feel. I would feel the same if my husband ever did that. You guys definitely need to talk so you can explain to him how his deceit makes you feel. He needs to realize that there's a lot more going on here even if he never physically did anything with this other woman. I pray for the best for you :)
cravinsugar cravinsugar 10 years
I would be angry and hurt too. I had a conversation with my man about this type of situation, and how i would feel about it versus how he feels about it. It was a good conversation. At least he now knows how i feel. Perhaps you and your man should do the same type of thing?
pinkzink pinkzink 10 years
sparklestar sparklestar 10 years
I would be angry too. You have every right to be annoyed! He lied and didn't make time for you (his wife) but made time for her? If I were you I would confront HER and tell her to back off away from your husband. I'd tell her she was treading on toes and to stay AWAY. If she does not then I would turn up to his office during lunch breaks and whisk him away before she has chance to. Women are funny creatures - she is probably jealous of the marriage which you have to him and the fact she fails so miserably at being able to find a man of her own.
Le-Luxe Le-Luxe 10 years
I agree with Dear- emotional relationships with someone of the opposite sex are just as- if not worse- then physical cheating. The worst part is that he felt the need to 'hide' it and 'lie' about not being able to take lunch with you. That is deception right there! Who even knows about what they talk about....but hopefully its not him venting to her about any voids in your relationship. You should def. see a counselor and talk it out.
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