Can someone emotionally cheat on the internet or am I over reacting?


#1

Hi, I am new here and have been dealing with some issues and would like to have some feedback please. Understand I am fairly new to this forum thing. So please don’t be to harsh in your reply. I am being open and honest in my searching for answerer here.

I have a roommate who is my best friend and boyfriend. As I said roommate, that means no sex involved. And yes we plan to get married. Please don’t give me a lecture about co-habitation, I have already been to a Priest, and have been already shown what is in the CCC and in scripture. I know this is a gray area, and that co-habitation itself is not a sin. I am in my mid 40’s so please don’t treat me as if I am a young kid. This is not my first time around for me. Yes I am annulled, and am working closely with my parish priest on all issues concerning my co-habitation and future marriage.

My dilemma is this… I recently found out my boyfriend is chatting with other women on line (IM) and forums, cultivating friendships. This really makes me feel uneasy, and I told him I don’t approve of it. A couple times I got don right mad. He got defensive and told me I was the one with the problem, and it should not bother me at all if he has friendships with other women.

I agree to a point. It appears to me that some of these women are single. So I pointed that out and asked why he isn’t chatting with men instead. I haven’t gotten an answer yet. You would think that if he was committed to our relationship he would spend more time building us, rather that other relationships right?

I feel if he really Loves me, that he would take my emotions into consideration, and not search for women on line to chat with.

I don’t know, maybe the chaste thing is getting to him. After all we have both been married before. But I also am committed to not giving into that just to keep him focused on me. And I know he is committed to both of us being chaste. We are both practicing Catholics.

Maybe I am way out on a limb with my thinking here, and overreacting. It just really doesn’t sit well with me. I read just recently this statement “You cannot be faithfully committed to your relationship and keeping it indissoluble if you are having intimate conversations with another woman.” This statement is what really got me thinking, on this whole subject of emotionally cheating.

So now I am questioning even though he is not physically interacting with anyone, can this be a form of emotional cheating?

Thanks for your input.


#2

**Whether or not it is inappropriate or even cheating is kind of beside the point. The main issue is that he is completely disregarding your feelings (rational or not) and refusing to see that his actions are affecting you. Well ,he is seeing that they are affecting you but he doesn’t care and would rather get defensive and make excuses (one of them being that you have a problem). Does this really sound like the kid of man that will make a good husband? If cannot love honor and cherish you NOW, why would he do it after the vows?

I am sure he loves you, as you do him. But I am not going to pretend that at your age you haven’t figured out that love is not enough.

Hopefully if you are both committed to having a loving relationship you will be able to fix this problem. A yes, it is a problem. NOT your problem. Whether or not you should** feel badly about his behavior doesn’t matter. What matters is his reaction. He is completely dismissing you. He may as well just slap you in the face. You deserve to be treated with dignity and respect (as does he).

And, for the record, in my opinion what he is doing is wrong and has no place in the life of a man who should be focused on his girlfriend with hopes of marriage.


#3

Looking at it from the other side of the species, online friendships are risky but a truly platonic friendship online is harmless - though I would be interested in what they are discussing. It should make no difference if he is chatting with a guy or girl. If they are chatting about the latest American Idol or this week’s big game, it seems pretty safe. The internet keeps many people out of bars. We cannot expect to spend all of our free time with our S.O. or spouse.


#4

Thank you for responding. I can see our open communication is vital at this point, and that I need to find a way to talk to him about it further. So your statement that “His actions are affecting me” are very helpful in how I will approach this subject again.

Yes we are both committed to having a loving relationship. And I do know that Love is not enough. Love is a choice, and we all have faults, and cork’s. Our relationship never started out as a romance, or stray eyed puppy love. We were friends first, now we are best friends and started to love each other, all the good and the bad that we both have. Even best friends sometimes need someone else to talk to I realize this. Just like I am doing now.

But I really do feel as though my emotions were cast aside regarding to what he is doing and how it made me feel.

I too pray and hope we can fix this problem. I am sure there will be all kinds of ups and downs throughout our life. Getting input from another’s prospective on the situation really helps in how to deal with it. Thanks again. God Bless.


#5

Unless you are a person who regularly is jealous about others in his life, I think you should trust your instincts on this one.

I don’t even know either of you and my gut says it is inappropriate. (And, I have learned from sad experience, my gut is usually right.)


#6

I don’t think there is anything wrong per se with talking to people of the same or oppoiste sex online, but it is something that could lead to problems.

I guess what I would do is ask myself why I feel uncomfortable about it. Does it seem like he is shutting me out and then sharing himself with others? Is he secretive about it? Does he spend an excessive amount of time doing it?

Or, on the flip side, do you spend too much time being wrapped up with him, making him feel like he needs some space? Are you too possessive? Were you hurt in the past by someone cheating on you and you are projecting that experience onto him?

There are so many possibilities, I think it is impossible for us to know. Hopefully, you two have the kind of a relationship where you can be open and discuss anything that is bothering you. If not, that is where I would put my efforts, on communication.


#7

The simplest answer is yes. However, being an older, single man, I have casual friendships with a number of women, some the wives of my friends. But I do know where the lines are drawn. Sure, a man can have friendships with women without it being anything more.

In your situation though, I’d be curious to know if your BF is never married or previously married, and how old he is. A divorced man around 40 who hangs around the internet “cultivating” friendships with women to the consternation of his future wife, sends up a whole bunch of red flags for me.

A single man who is in his forties has probably cultivated female friends over the years and may well be a different story.

I just wouldn’t dismiss it out of hand. And you do have a right to have your feelings in the matter taken into consideration.


#8

Yep I agree, and can even understand it to a point. And he isn’t chatting with “the guys”, its “the girls”. I have a full life with my girlfriends outside our relationship. But they are with my lady friends. I don’t seek male interactions on line.That is why it is so difficult for me. How would you handle it if it were you in my shoes, being a man, and your lady was doing that?


#9

Ask him if he would mind if you would sit down next to him while he was chatting.


#10

Great advice. You want an answer to your doubts? Take Mirror’s advice and if he gets defensive or hostile - bingo !!


#11

Ok to your first set of questions yes to all. To your second set yes to all except the first one. I am not wrapped up in him, I like my own time, and days or evenings out with the ladies visiting my friends, and with my sisters.

I was married for a long time over 20 years, and yes vary hurt. Your next question will be therapy? Yep, there too, and still there.
I don’t think I would of even thought anything of it until it appeared at times like it was secretive. Then other times he is real open about it. When I read that one statement (in my ist post), I started thinking, and thinking, and thinking.


#12

**
That wouldn’t prove he is doing something inappropriate… he may overreact with defensiveness etc if he is feeling controlled or smothered.

There are no easy answers. He needs to respect her feelings and she needs to make sure she isn’t being controlling or smothering.

They need to really talk this out. If they can’t do that then the future marriage may be doomed.
**


#13

WHY do women try to make excuses for bad behavior?

This is unacceptable behavior, and marriage will not change it. This type of behavior shows an underlying character issue. He’s in his 40s. This is not something he is gonig to grow out of. It’s a HUGE red flag.

If you were not living with thim-- thus already emotionally and financially entangled-- you could easily tell him “hit the road”. But, instead you will likely try to negotiate with him, beg him, try to get him to change.

That is why it is such a bad idea to live with someone-- and I don’t think it’s a “gray area” at all. It’s bad for many reasons, sex is only one of them. This isn’t a “lecture”, this is 40-something to 40-something: wake up and smell the coffee.

This is a prime example of why getting emotionally entangled to this level with someone you are not married to clouds your vision and judgment and makes it harder to do what you know you need to do.

I wish you all the best as you try to gather the fortitude necessary to deal with this issue, up to and including breaking it off.


#14

Yes we were both married before. He is in his mid 40’s as well.


#15

Now thats a goon one. :smiley:


#16

I am in your shoes - as is my wife. I am in Religious Education. I have 150 catechists and only 5 are men. The other DREs are mostly women. My wife works at major home improvement company’s headquarters. That is a male dominated world. She is in football and racing pools. She eats out more than me and it is not all women. My wife is not much for internet chatting. For a while after some surgery I was playing Scrabble online a bunch and it was mostly women playing. However, I knew how to log-off when she or the kids were home and needed me. The bigger issue is that the BF is spending too much time on-line.


#17

Wake up and smell the coffee hua? Well been there too. But it took me over 20 years to get out of that one. I did everything right with my X, and hung in there all those years because we were married. Besides when you are engaged and living apart you are already emotionally entangled in just the same ways. When I had a girlfriend for a roommate, we were just as close, we were so close people started asking if we were gay. And it was my friend for crine out loud. So no matter who you LOVE in your life, you are emotionally attached.


#18

I agree and thanks much for your input, it really helps me a lot.


#19

My husband is the only male member in a private Yahoo group of female fan-fiction writers. I had some issues with this at first, but I trust him explicitly, and so if that’s the case then my jealousy is my own issue to overcome. I can’t allow my own insecurities to control how he engages with friends. I know who they all are, they know who his wife is, what they chat about, and he even sends me stuff from them once in awhile. If there was ever one second of doubt that this was not totally above board I would demand he stop immediately - that goes beyond just my own insecurity and into a totally different realm of what is actually happening.

If there is ANY romantic/flirting/secretive conversations going on at ANY time then there is absolutely NO room for that in a marriage.

Friends are friends - and friends don’t go where they are not supposed to. If they do then they cease being friends and become something that does not belong in a marriage.

~Liza


#20

Good point, and again thanks. Yes, us communicating and talking about it without making each other feel bad for our feeling’s the most important thing. The toughest answers in life are never easy, and take a lot of prayer. I will take under consideration, the controlling issue. Actually, I will really look at it. The last thing i want is a doomed marriage before I even say “I do”. I can’t see me letting it go that far though if I thought or think in the future that he is not the right one for me. We really do have great communication. I just have this issue that is bugging me, and felt i needed to turn to my Church family to get another prospective. And I thank you all for your comments, and pointers.


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