How to deal with emotional infidelity

How to deal with emotional infidelity

Emotional infidelity is when your partner seems to have a stronger emotional connection to somebody else. They may not be having sex, but there is definitely intimacy and a shared emotional bond that is absent in your realtionship with them.

In a healthy relationship it is normal to form relationships with others which involve various degrees of trust and intimacy. There is a problem however when these other relationships are fulfilling a need which is not being met by your romantic relationship with your life partner. Human beings have needs and the reality is that in most cases partners only seek intimacy outside of their romantic relationship when their needs are not being met at home. The exception to this is those wounded individuals who actually enjoy hurting the people they love but that is another story.

How to tell when it’s something serious?
If your partner is constantly talking about a friend of the opposite sex (or same sex as the case may be) in the office, ask yourself:

1. What is the state of your marriage? A quick assessment, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 high and 1 low; if you rate anywhere below 7, it means there is a lot to work on the marriage.

2. Are you dating your spouse weekly? If not, ask them for a weekly date, doing the usual fun things or exploring new couple activities, whether, sports or movies or local travel. Regular companionship with your partner is vital in your marriage. This will ensure the friendship in the marriage. If you are reading this then perhaps it looks like the friendship in your marriage needs strengthening. Even if you have one or two kids at this point and a career, you have to make time for our spouse. Find ways to make time for each other. Cut down somewhere.

3. Do you have dinner together at least once a week? This is the time to connect and continue the friendship as a couple. Talk about the kids, the home but talk about each other’s joys and difficulties. Focus on the person of your partner. Giving this attention in addition to the weekly date will further boost the marriage.

4. What does your partner say about your listening and speaking skills? Are you a good listener or do you jump into conclusions and say some put downs? When we listen regularly and well, we give value to our partner. He feels important and admired.

5. Have you been admiring your partner regularly? Men have the need to be admired by articulating any small contribution or achievement. Nagging and complaining are downers. Women need to feel seen, desired and appreciated by their man. There is a positive way of giving negative feedback, if need be.

6. Do you have common activities and interests outside of the kids and home? Doing things together, whether playing badminton or watching a movie together keeps the fire burning as a couple. Our careers can take us apart but doing things together weekly enhances connection.

7. Have you met your partners officemates and other friends? Meet their officemates and make friends with them. This will also emphasise your presence as a spouse and your “ownership” of your spouse. Trusting your spouse is good but being present every so often protects your position as spouse.

8. Have you continued to look attractive in the eyes of your spouse? Keeping some pride in your appearance and being well groomed are musts. Don't let yourself go. Be the one your partner appreciates and admires.

9. Do you have a healthy self-worth? A healthy self-worth is important in a marriage. Without this, one will be insecure or jealous of many moves of your partner.

If you feel your marriage is really great then you can mention to your partner that you notice that they seem to talk about this person often. Let him know that you feel uncomfortable about the frequency of their interaction with them. Ask them what can be done to make you feel more assured (this assumes you are not insecure to begin with). This is part of the openness a marriage needs. It is a challenge and can help deepen the relationship as a couple. Or of course it can be symptomatic of marital problems. If your partner starts saying they wish you were more like this other person then that is a real danger signal. Be proactive in your relationship, nurture it and be lovers of each the other and all will be well.

Disclaimer: We are not Medical Doctors! The suggestions and information contained in this website support the mission of the Cosmosis Mentoring Centre to provide insight into self actualisation of the human experience that we believe when combined with lifestyle habits such as drinking pure water and getting regular exercise produce wellness of mind, body and spirit. We encourage anyone with a health condition to seek advice from their health care professional.