Ade (agentfroot) wrote,

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Writer's Block: Define Cheater

Boo. You suck, Pennsylvania. Oh well. I knew it was coming, but you still suck.

Political calls I've received (3 yesterday, one from each Obama or supporter):
- 2 from Barack Obama
- 2 from Michelle Obama
- 1 from Samuel L. Jackson for Obama
- 1 from some random Clinton supporter

Whoah. Ok, Obama, you are totally made of win even though Pennsylvania sucks, because you have Samuel L. Jackson on your side. His message was all badass and "go vote NOW" (even though I got the call like half an hour after voting) and awesome. It would have been hilarious if he said, "That's IT! I have HAD it with these motherf***ing Clintons in this motherf***ing White House!" but I guess we can't have everything. Hahaha.

Some randomness...

What is your definition of cheating?

That depends on what kind of cheating we're talking about. Cheating on tests? Taxes? Well, that's pretty much set in stone - doing things you're clearly not supposed to do, like looking at someone else's paper or knowingly not reporting a source of income. Cheating on a diet? Well, it's good to indulge, but only within reason. I cheat on my vegetarianness on occasion, usually with shrimp, and occasionally chicken if I really really want it (chicken parm is totally worth cheating for).

If we're talking about romantic relationships (which I assume the question referred to), that usually depends on the people involved. Everyone has different definitions of what's ok and what isn't, and people should definitely come to an agreement on this before getting involved with each other. Like if you think it's ok to hold hands with people and give them brief, friendly kisses while your potential partner gets on your case if you even glance at someone else, you each will have some serious compromising to do if this is going to work. First of all, humans are, by nature, not monogamous beings. It's a socially-constructed thing. Yes, many people may be wired for monogamy and work best that way, but I don't like how this society pushes people to marry and commit to monogamy when there are so many people who can't do that. If you can't commit to monogamy, either don't get married or involved in monogamous relationships, or compromise with a mutually open marriage or relationship. It's only fair if BOTH partners are free to be involved with other people. Plus, you have to communicate about it and not be secretive and stuff. Be responsible and careful about it, and make sure everyone involved is informed and accepting of the situation.

And even if you're already in a monogamous situation and find yourself having feelings for someone else, don't panic. It's natural to have feelings for others, even if you're in a happy, healthy monogamous relationship. As long as you don't act on them or obsess over it. Now, if you're clearly unhappy in a relationship and someone better for you comes along, that's another thing. It happens. Just make sure you END one relationship before beginning another and take some time to heal first. I think cheating tends to happen when people are unhappy in their relationships anyway.

Humans and their societies are very strange. Nothing is ever simple. It's always so complicated. And I do believe that cheating is wrong, and if you knowingly cheat, then yes, you screwed up big time, and your partner has every right to be irate and end the relationship or marriage. Like I said, if you can't be monogamous, don't commit to it, or if you're unhappy with your relationship, end it before playing with someone else. Otherwise, you're a douchebag.

Another aspect of this issue is the weird concept of "emotional affairs." I've read a couple articles about them and tend to disagree with them. Mainly because the articles seem to imply that if you have a close, extramarital friendship with someone of the opposite sex and there's attraction involved, it's cheating. I think this is utter BS. I do think you can cheat emotionally without even touching someone else, but only if you're having an actual relationship on the side, not just a somewhat ambiguous friendship. You can be "just friends" with someone even if you're both insanely attracted to each other, as long as you don't push any physical/emotional boundaries. But if it's affecting your current relationship or feelings for the person you're with, there's probably something wrong with your current relationship that you need to deal with.

That said, these are my personal definitions of what I would consider cheating.

- intercourse (well, obviously)
- oral/manual sex
- having an outside relationship when you've committed to monogamy
- making out, or romantic kissing

NOT cheating:
- flirting
- "playing the field" when you haven't committed to anyone
- hugs and cuddles
- holding hands
- fantasizing
- brief, friendly kisses (key word here is "friendly")
- playing Spin the Bottle (now, if you do the "7 minutes in heaven" thing and make out with someone, that IS cheating)
- playful groping (there's a difference between goofing off and 2nd/3rd basing it)

There is, of course, gray area in the "not cheating" area, like if you persistently flirt with someone, or combine a few of the above - in that case, you need to ask yourself what the heck you're doing, be open with the other person about it, and figure out what's ok and what you should avoid doing. If you push boundaries, even without crossing them, you're putting yourself in danger of eventually taking it to the next level.
Tags: define cheater, writer's block

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