Are emotional affairs worse than physical ones?

Note: I did post this before, but I had to delete it… (not because of the comments!)… but here it is again.

I thought about something interesting the other day, and thought I’d try and expand on that further. And this is all written from a perspective of a straight, taken woman, so forgive the politically incorrect phrasing that does not include gay people.

Are emotional affairs the same as physical affairs?

Sure, with physical affairs it’s pretty cut and dry. You kissed him, you felt her up, you f*cked him. But emotional affairs aren’t as cut and dry as that.

They’re more of a grey area, and besides what would you classify an emotional affair? Would you say that if a man and woman were best friends and told each other everything – that would be an emotional affair?

Personally, I think if a man and woman are best friends, told each other everything, but would hesitate to tell their significant other about 50% of that stuff, that’s classified as an emotional affair.

I think the rule I had in my head was that it was emotional cheating if you tell another man (girlfriends don’t count) deep dark secrets and things that you couldn’t reveal to your boyfriend.

But am I wrong?

Is it possible to have friendships between men and women (a whole other animal to dissect apparently), and furthermore, is it okay to tell that other man or woman everything, but selectively filter out what you’d tell your significant other?

In addition, are emotional affairs not only the same as physical affairs, but maybe worse because it takes over your heart and emotions rather than just your body reacting to a physical attraction?

I’d definitely feel more betrayed if my boyfriend was emotionally cheating on me with another woman by telling her things he’s never told me than if he told me he kissed someone out of lust at a party and totally regrets it.

I think it’s also because emotional cheating is harder to define, but not only that, harder to prove. It’s just a gut feeling, an instinct, that probably turns out to be 90% correct, but still, I feel like there should be some hard facts to back it all up.

So my second question to everyone is: is an emotional affair worse than a physical one?

At this point, I’d tell my boyfriend everything. If a guy hit on me, I’d tell him and how I reacted, and he tells me all the times women make passes at him. I usually laugh it off because I don’t feel threatened, but I wonder if it’s the same on his end – if he feels threatened, or secure in our relationship. He seems fine so far, and if he wasn’t, I’d just stop telling him those stories but they wouldn’t stop happening. But that’s another topic altogether.

I’d like to hear the opinion of girls AND guys (if any are lurking)…!

About the Author

Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver. I cleared $60,000 in 18 months earning $65,000 gross/year. Now I am self-employed, and you can read more about my story here, or visit my other blog: The Everyday Minimalist.