So, let's define "cheating" shall we?
There's a bulletin board that I used to frequent for a while and now just lurk to check on a few net-friends. One of these friends is unhappily married with three kids, the youngest being around 14. And he's an incredible flirt. He's gotten into the habit of clammering for attention on this board by saying how his wife treats him so horribly. Personally, if half of what he says it true regarding his marriage, I don't understand why he's still around. He must like the abuse.
Anyway, so he's made a lot of female friends at this chatter board. And I know for a fact that he and one of the girls were having an affair. They no longer are but remain friends. She's now one of my best friends and I helped her through that emotional time. So, yeah, in that case, he cheated. But that's not what I'm debating. His wife doesn't know about it or is probably suspicous of his infidelity.
Well, apparently the wife saw a news report about how to tell in your spouse is cheating with someone online and now is very suspicous. He doesn't tell her much, if anything, about his friendships with people on the chatter. He keeps saying how she doesn't understand the bonds people can and have created on-line. That I won't dispute - you can make real friendship/relationships online. I understand it; she doesn't. But then, how can you understand something you don't know about.
Here's my issue. The wife now wants the password to his email. You tell me if this is cheating by his reaction. He sent a mass email to all of his chick-buddies (only one guy was included in the email - a guy, I might add, who basically left his wife for his mistress) saying if you email him at that address, then please send "generic" emails and don't sign it "LOVE." He goes on to say that how "the girls at (his wife's) work" think that if he doesn't give his password to her then he has something to hide. Furthermore, he says he has a new email address where they (he and the chatter-girlies) can discuss this matter in private.
From his actions, I seems to me that he's got something to hide. My reasoning is if the relationship isn't inappropriate, then why are you hiding it from your significant other? What are you doing/saying that you have to hide it? Sure, the s.o. might not understand the relationship, but they don't have to understand a relationship to accept that the relationship is important.
So, let's define "cheating." I'll say the litmus test of cheating is asking yourself if you'd do/say the same things with your s.o. standing right there. If not, then that's a big red flag don't you think? Let's face it, if you have to hide a relationship from your significant other, then it's cheating.
What do you think?