Clayton Olson of YourTango.com wrote an opinion piece about the ultimate relationship betrayal, cheating, and how it is not just a random act of trashing their marriage. Olson says that infidelity is a slowly brewing storm, starting with these 7 less obvious ways people cheat on their spouses before committing the physical act:
1. Secret relationships. We all have multiple healthy relationships outside of marriages with friends, co-workers, sometimes even our exes. But Olson asks this crucial question: Would you act the same with this other person if your significant other was watching? If the answer is “No,” some serious boundaries are being crossed.
2. Hidden money. Maybe your spouse has a spending problem, a gambling habit, or maintains private accounts that you don’t know about. The betrayal happens when it’s hidden from your spouse.
3. Your spouse complains about you to others. We’re not talking about the normal venting process to your best friend. We mean straight up trash talking your significant other. This is a blatant form of disrespect and paints a terrible picture of you to others.
4. Your spouse undermines you in public. Your spouse is supposed to be your partner and your biggest fan. After all, they chose you! So when your spouse undermines you in public, you feel hurt, betrayed, embarrassed. Olson writes, “You know what I mean: That roll of your eyes, that sarcastic remark, the cheap shot you take when they piss you off.”
5. Emotional dishonesty. This category is very broad, and for good reason. There are so many behaviors that can demonstrate emotional dishonesty in a relationship that we simply cannot name them all. But according to Olson, some common forms include “committing to something you don’t really want to do, to saying that you’re ‘fine’ (when you’re actually boiling with disdain), all the way to faking an orgasm.” But this is where it starts to get dangerous…when it’s used to justify wrongdoings. Your partner may manipulate you into thinking that something is right, even though he or she knows it’s wrong.
6. Your spouse is straight up selfish. By selfish, we mean your spouse is selfish with their time, devotion to giving you attention (or lack there of), during sex, etc. However, your spouse’s selfishness can be most hurtful when they try to invalidate your feelings. Your spouse’s feelings are never wrong, but when you bring your feelings to light, they are discredited. It makes you feel angry, divided, disrespected, irrelevant, and manipulated.
7. Stonewalling. The dictionary term of stonewalling reads, “to block, stall, or resist intentionally.” When your spouse stonewalls you, they want to be in a position of power. They essentially withhold themselves, their emotions, their affection, etc. until you give in to them and they win the battle. According to Olson, “It’s like holding your marriage hostage with a passive-aggressive gun.”
Olson believes, according to this piece, that the “wrecking ball is often set into motion long before the big offense.” What are your thoughts?
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