The thing with micro-cheating is that it’s very hard to detect. It is a form of emotional cheating and it’s getting more and more common among people who like to leave their options open, even if they are already in a relationship.
Let’s first get to the real meaning of this trendy expression. According to psychologist Melanie Schilling, “Micro-cheating is a series of seemingly small actions that indicate a person is emotionally or physically focused on someone outside their relationship.”
Some people look at it as a form of betrayal and some as innocent flirting that is blown out of proportion. Why, flirting can be a part of nature for some people, it’s something fun they do without giving it any higher meaning.
Then again who would want to be in a relationship with a person who:
1. Spends a lot of their time scanning and investigating the social media accounts of a particular person
2. Texts someone else heart-warming messages filled with love emojis
3. Denies that they have a girlfriend/boyfriend
4. Has that particular somebody under a code name in their phone
5. Stays in touch with their ex or sees their ex behind your back
6. Confides in someone outside of your relationship about the things that should stay private or reserved for your partner’s ears only
While some people will discard the things listed above and try to justify their behavior, like justify that they haven’t kissed them, they haven’t had sex with them or anything like that, it still doesn’t feel right. Keeping secrets like that from your partner can’t be a good thing and it will most probably backfire. Nothing positive can happen when a person who is in a relationship has an obsession with somebody else. It can be really hurtful.
Innocent flirting, if it can be considered innocent, would consist of smiling here and there, making interesting conversation or liking each other’s posts. That is considered normal.
But anything beyond that can be a serious threat to your relationship. A person who engages in micro-cheating can form a strong emotional bond with somebody and that can be as hurtful to their partner as actual physical cheating. Being faithful to your partner means being entirely devoted, both body and mind. It doesn’t mean catching feelings for somebody else.
That’s why if you are overdoing anything, if you are hiding things from your partner, or feeling guilty about not sharing some things with him, you should completely stop what you are doing, for the sake of your relationship.
Think about what triggered you to do that and if there is something that is making you unhappy in your relationship. Are they any issues you need to discuss with your partner? Because the solution to your problems is never somebody outside of your relationship. It’s always about just two people. You can’t escape your problems, especially in this way, and you wouldn’t want to hurt your partner’s feelings.
If you suspect that your partner might be involved in something like this, something must have happened that planted that seed of doubt in your mind. His behavior might have changed, you might have seen some messages or some unknown name on his phone that made you wonder if there was something more there.
The important thing here is not to overreact. Take things calmly. Because for starters, your partner might only be doing this at some subconscious level. He might be doing absolutely nothing but sometimes jealousy gets the best of you.
Talk to him when you are cool, calm and collected and ask him why he is doing that. Ask him what he would think if things were the other way around and if he found out that you were getting close to or getting hooked on somebody other than him. Tell him that his behavior is hurting you and that you would very much appreciate it if he would stop doing what he is doing. There is nothing as powerful as an open and honest conversation. It might even fix the whole situation.
Micro-cheating can be really devastating to your relationship if things go any further. Keeping secrets from your partner is never a good thing. Relationships are built on trust and respect and if they are non-existent, your relationship won’t be able to survive. So honesty really is the best policy.