Micro-cheating is the new buzz word in modern dating, and it’s used to describe the seemingly harmless, tiny actions that could lead up to full-blown infidelity. Micro-cheating may never lead up to sex, and it isn’t exactly an emotional affair, where your partner is turning to someone else for a shoulder to lean on. In fact, the actions your man may be taking may look innocent on the outside, but if they’re making you uncomfortable or leave you questioning where you stand with him, then it counts as micro-cheating. Micro-cheating may range from your partner leaving “heart eyes” emojis on another woman’s Instagram photo to hiding the text messages from his ex so you don’t see them.
If you get upset with your man about these little moments of flirtation and dishonest, you’re not just over-reacting! Micro-cheating is such a grey area, that it’s not about the actions themselves; it’s the intention attached the actions that create drama in your relationship.
I want to give you 3 typical ways micro-cheaters behave online and offline so that you can know how to have a conversation with your man about how you feel when he flirts with another woman.
Sign #1: He’s Hiding His Relationship With You
Maybe you’re ok with your man having female friends on social media. He’s a grown man, right? But you begin noticing that his privacy settings don’t allow you to see all his posts. And when he changed his profile picture, his comments were filled with women who clearly think he’s single – and it feels like he wants it that way!
If you discover that your man is downplaying the nature of his relationship with you to other people, he is micro-cheating! Even if there isn’t another woman in the picture, he’s sending a signal that he’s available to other women by keeping you a secret.
Sign #2: He’s Hiding His Relationship With His Exes FROM You
It’s one thing to be friends with your ex. It’s another thing to hide that friendship from the person you’re currently dating! That’s what you need to tell your man if you find out he’s been secretly keeping up with his ex via social media, text messages, phone calls or meet ups at Starbucks.
It’s time to discuss your boundaries around friends of the opposite sex and let him know how his secret behavior is breaking your trust in him.
Sign #3: He’s Openly Flirting With Another Woman Like It’s No Big Deal
Maybe it’s way he keeps glancing at the server when she walks away. Or, it’s the lingering hug he gives his “friend” from church. It could be the way he dances with one woman all night at the company gala. All you know is, his flirting makes you feel invisible, and you don’t like it.
He isn’t hiding the fact that he’s feeling another woman and that’s a problem because it crosses a line and makes you feel disrespected.
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On one hand, flirting and having friends doesn’t mean he’s cheating on you. On the other hand, being secretive about his friends and making you feel insecure about your relationship is a violation of the trust, integrity and mutual respect you need to keep your relationship moving forward.
Micro-cheating doesn’t have to be a deal breaker, but it should be a wake up call! The next step you need to take is having a real talk conversation about what cheating means to you. Then, set agreements about how you’ll respect each others’ boundaries so that both of you feel you’re getting what you need from the relationship.
BMWK, What would you add to the list? What counts as micro-cheating to you?
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