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Sexting. Flirting. Or Sex. What Do You Consider Cheating? Cover Picture

Sexting. Flirting. Or Sex. What Do You Consider Cheating?

While it’s easy to believe that men are from Mars and women are from an entirely different galaxy, we found that on the subject of cheating men predictably steered to a stereotype, but the women surprised us.

Dhara Shetty, 23, Bangalore

Define cheating

It’s something that people do for fun, when they’re bored.

So it’s kind of like watching a movie?

No, it’s way more entertaining than that.

What boundaries do you think exist as far as cheating is concerned?

It completely depends on what your partner is game for. Sometimes people need to spice things up in their relationships, so a third wheel is actually not such a bad thing at all.

Does emotional closeness with someone apart from your partner count as cheating?

Yes. Physically, I feel like you can do anything with anyone, but you can really only just connect truly with one person on a deeper level.

Does sexting count as cheating?

Nope. That’s just harmless fun too.

Have you ever cheated?

Yes!

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

Obviously.

 

Vikas Roy, 30, Mumbai

Define cheating

It’s simple really. Let me break it down in employment terms.

Full time job = you’re married.

Retainer = you have something that’s currently keeping you occupied, but you’re on the lookout for better prospects.

Freelancer = you’re single and ready to mingle.

Cheating’s a lot like freelancing that way. You could always be doing (literally) something/someone better.

Have you ever cheated?

Yes. I cheated because I wasn’t committed at the time.

What boundaries do you think exist as far as cheating is concerned?

If you’re in a committed relationship, there is a fence that you cannot and do not cross. The problem arises when two people view the relationship differently.

Does emotional closeness with someone apart from your partner count as cheating?

If you’re not getting emotional support from your relationship, then it’s not really cheating, because you’re just seeking out someone to talk to. But if by discussing issues in your relationship with a third party that leads to closeness with them, then it becomes cheating.

Does sexting count as cheating

YES!

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

Yes. Because I wasn’t in a committed relationship, I was still ‘freelancing’.

Tell us about the shades of grey.

Mira Prakash, 31, Mumbai

Define cheating:

If there’s a doubt in your mind about whether what you’re doing is right, then you’re cheating, but obviously there are shades of grey.

Tell us about the shades of grey.

Sometimes people in long distance relationships justify to themselves that it’s okay to cheat. Or if their partners are emotionally unavailable. Somehow it’s alright to cheat if you paint yourself as the victim, and not the victimizer.

Have you ever cheated?

Yes.

What boundaries do you think exist as far as cheating is concerned?

Holding hands, cuddling with someone else is fine.

Isn’t that kind of like cheating emotionally?

Not if your significant other knows about it.

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

No.

 

Sumeet Garg, 22, New Delhi

Define cheating

Cheating is a way of expressing yourself, by seeking out new experiences.

So what new experiences have you sought out for yourself?

All kinds. Thin, curvy, goth, three ways. Cheating lets you live out your fantasies.

So then, why be in a relationship to start with?

Without the relationship, there’s no thrill of doing something wrong and forbidden.

What boundaries do you think exist as far as cheating is concerned?

For me, nothing really.

Does emotional closeness with someone apart from your partner count as cheating?

No. People should be allowed to do what they want, with who they want.

Does sexting count as cheating

Yes. The promise of sex is very misleading. That’s cheating for sure.

Have you ever cheated?

What do you think?

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

Of course.

What boundaries do you think exist as far as cheating is concerned?

Janvi Sheth, 20, Bangalore

Define cheating

There are two kinds – emotional and physical. Physical ambivalence is more accepted than emotional straying for me.

What boundaries do you think exist as far as cheating is concerned?

As long as you don’t get hurt, it’s all good.

So then, it’s okay if you hurt someone else?

It’s not really okay, but as long as you’re protected, that’s all that should matter.

Does emotional closeness with someone apart from your partner count as cheating?

Yes, definitely. That’s not cool.

Does sexting count as cheating

Yes. Sexting complicates things. Emotions get involved.

Have you ever cheated?

Duh, yes.

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

No. That’s just stupid.

 

Rohan Gupta, 27, New Delhi

Define cheating

It’s something people do when they’re bored and out of options.

So you’re okay with cheating?

Harmless flirting is fine, but physical contact is just not cool, no matter how drunk you are. You should never put yourself in a situation that damages the entire relationship.

Have you ever cheated?

No.

Would you be more open to the idea of cheating if it was socially acceptable?

Probably. I’d rather be in an open relationship then. Though it isn’t exactly cheating if the other person knows.

Does emotional cheating count?

Yes. It’s probably worse than actual physical.

Does sexting count as cheating?

Yes.

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

Never in my life.

Define Cheating

Sonakshi Jha, 23, Mumbai

Define cheating

It’s a guilty pleasure.

So it’s something you’ve enjoyed doing?

It’s complex, right? It’s kind of like doing drugs. There’s an upper and a rough downer. On one hand, there’s the excitement of being with someone else, but there’s also the flip side when you realise you might be hurting someone.

Does emotional cheating count?

Let’s call a spade a spade, shall we? There’s no escaping the fact that cheating is all encompassing. Whether it’s a kiss, a confession or a sext, it all counts.

So everything is a boundary?

Technically, yes. But it’s all in your head really.

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

I don’t see why I shouldn’t have maintained a profile. It’s part who I am, before and after a relationship.

 

Akash Bhasin, 29, Mumbai

Define cheating

It’s something that people do to seek value and meaning outside of what already have. It doesn’t make sense because it’s neither here, nor there. The in between is just a waste of time for all parties involved.

Have you ever cheated?

No.

Does emotional cheating count?

Definitely.

Does sexting count as cheating

Yes!

Have you maintained an online dating profile while in a relationship?

Never had one to begin with.

 

 

By Smitha Menon

Photography: Yash Bandi