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  • Dean Smith

Fine Line: Flirting to Cheating?

According to Therese J. Borchard, Associate editor for, social media has created a whole new monster the world of infidelity, and what a significant monster it is. Katherine Hertlein, a licensed marriage and family therapist, says “cyber cheating is especially appealing to women because they can get their emotional needs met behind a computer in the comfort of their home,” and research shows that these relationships are increasingly being taken to a physical level.

When does harmless play cross the fine line from flirting to cheating?

1. When your partner is hiding it

If your partner is deleting texts, emails, call logs, etc., they’re basically already over that fine line. If there’s nothing to hide, then why delete the information in the first place? If your partner truly felt that the conversation was acceptable and appropriate, there would no reason to erase the evidence.

2. When it includes sexual innuendos

Discussing any sort of sexual interaction with someone other than your partner is a huge red flag. That sort of intimacy should only be shared within the confines of your relationship, and Borchard says “if the communications consist of subtle sexual overtones, watch out. If it feels like foreplay in anyway, that’s not good.”

3. Frequency

Content of the conversation is key, but the frequency of the interaction is also important. If you notice your partner dedicating more time to their text messages, Facebook, cell phones or another person than they are with you, that is extreme. Pay attention to the amount of interaction.

4. Rationalization

When a partner needs to justify the relationship with someone else by incessantly repeating “He/She is just a friend,” there’s more. No one has to “justify” a normal friendship.

5. Fulfillment

If your partner’s emotions and intimacy are not fulfilled at home, they could be compensating elsewhere. People often rationalize by saying “no one understands me like he/she does.” Shouldn’t the person that understands you most be your significant other?

6. Your partner talks about you, to them

We couldn’t explain this any better, so according to Borchard, “It’s disrespectful to share intimate details about your marriage or your spouse, and especially in a discourteous manner or with a flip attitude. Imagine that your wife was overhearing your entire conversation. Would you still say it?”

7. Removed from family life

If your partner is spending a significant amount of time away from their daily activities, family life (if applicable), or things they used to enjoy are now placed on the back burner because he/she too busy chatting online or on the phone, this should be a giant indicator that something is wrong.

8. People are talking…

Pay attention to good friends if they voice concern. Sure, rumors can easily be started and circulated, but if the concern of someone you truly trust has been brought to your attention, listen. They want what’s best for you.

9. Obvious lack in self-esteem

The ultimate ego boost is another person telling you that you’re attractive, funny, so on and so forth. If your partner needs an ego boost, they may seek it somewhere outside of the home. “There are healthier ways to increase your self-esteem and regain the power that you have lost in your own home,” says Borchard.

If you feel your partner may be engaging in this behavior, don’t hesitate to learn the truth. Contact ICU Investigations today for your free consultation. Every investigation is unique and requires specialpreparation and attention to detail. The investigation is then prepped, planned and implemented by a specialist to meet your specific needs and obtain your desired results. Suspicious? Get Answers.

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