Life

Close up of unrecognizable man using smart phone a couple talking about cheating in a round up of 10...
skynesher/E+/Getty Images

10 Things That Are Definitely Cheating

If it feels like cheating, it’s probably cheating.

Updated: 
Originally Published: 

When I was younger, I fully believed that there was no black or white areas when it came to cheating. I didn't think the “once a cheater, always a cheater” quote was true, and I felt like some things could be perceived differently by two different people. There are so many grey areas — like, is kissing cheating? Sexting? What even is cheating? It can be weirdly confusing. But now that I'm older (and have been cheated on more than once), I believe that the list of things that definitely should be considered cheating when you’re in a relationship is actually quite long.

Maybe it's because I've been burned, but I'm now of the mindset that there is no excuse for cheating of any kind. People can say they are unhappy, that their partner drove them to it, or that they had no control over themselves, but I won't buy it. It's this simple to me — if you want out of a relationship, then just leave. Don't pretend to be happy while cheating. Don't argue that if your partner had done this or that, you wouldn't have strayed. There's literally no excuse for it. Just because you're not having full-on sex with someone else doesn't mean you aren't cheating.

And, in the same vein, there are some things that aren't considered cheating. We're allowed to have attractive friends of the same sex that we're attracted to. It's not cheating to go out to a bar without your SO and get drunk on a Friday night. But exchanging numbers with a person at that bar and pretending like you're single? Yup, that most definitely is cheating, along with these eleven other things. If you find your partner doing these things or you yourself are caught in a few of the acts, it's time to reevaluate your relationship and get over your cheating self already.

1

Sending sexy pictures

Witthaya Prasongsin/Moment/Getty Images

I've heard the argument, "But at least I'm not actually sleeping with them!" before and it's so very weak. Stop trying to make what you're doing OK. If you're in a committed relationship, then no one but your SO should see a picture of you wearing nothing but a thong.

2

Sexting

This goes along with sexy pictures. I don't think it's innocent in the slightest and it's such a huge betrayal to your partner.

3

Lying about who you’re with

"She's just a friend."

"He's like my brother."

Then why do you need to lie about it? I have a guy best friend and I never have to hide his texts, our conversations, or our time together from my boyfriend. If you're having to keep someone a secret from your partner, you're probably cheating.

4

Sexual touching

Using your hands on each other, oral sex, or kissing parts of someone else's body? All cheating. Yes, even if it doesn't lead to full-on sex.

5

Betraying your partner to another person

Tara Moore/DigitalVision/Getty Images

You've overheard your partner complaining about you to a person they're attracted to and you're wondering if it's cheating. In my opinion, yes that is the definition of cheating. It's such a betrayal to you and to your relationship, especially if the person they're complaining to is attracted to your partner as well. If I knew some chick had a crush on my boyfriend and he was telling her all about how horrible I was, I'd be totally devastated.

6

Using dating apps to message people

Carol Yepes/Moment/Getty Images

I once heard someone justify their account on OKCupid, even though they were married, saying, “It's just fun to message people. I just like the innocent flirting.” It's not so innocent. Dating apps are there for people to find someone to be with. When you go on there looking for someone to engage in flirting with you, you're just asking for trouble and you're definitely a cheater.

7

Yes, kissing is cheating.

And you know I don't mean a kiss on the cheek when you're saying bye to a best friend. A kiss, with tongue or without, that sparks something more is definitely cheating. Kissing is cheating. Done.

8

Hiding your relationship from someone you're attracted to

A handsome stranger asked you if you were single on an airplane and you lied. Cheating. Even if nothing happens, pretending that your relationship doesn't exist so you can flirt and have fun with someone you're attracted to is not OK.

9

Speaking about the future you would have with someone if you left your partner

Again, this is a total betrayal to your partner. If you frequently fantasize about leaving your SO and you talk to your crush about what would happen if you did, you probably need to go ahead and end your relationship.

10

Watching the season finale of a favorite TV show without your partner

Morsa Images/DigitalVision/Getty Images

WORST. BETRAYAL. EVER. OK, not really but they deserve a night in the dog house for this one.

Honestly, if it feels like cheating — whether you’re the one doing the cheating, or the one being cheated on — it is probably cheating. If your inner alarm bells are ringing, listen to them.

This article was originally published on