This topic, unfortunately, is one that affects many marriages today. The effects are damaging and life-changing. However, this blog can help us see the behavior ahead of time in order to stop before it becomes too threatening. Here's what to watch out for: 1. Saying we're "just friends" with someone of the opposite sex.
When we find ourselves saying this over and over to ourselves, it's time to face reality. This statement is very dangerous. The fact we are even saying it means we're trying to convince ourselves of it.
This way of thinking allows us to stay in denial about what we know deep down to be wrong. Unfortunately our society has twisted reality and confused what appropriate male and female friendships actually look like. Hollywood glamorizes casual sexual relationships, convincing us this is the "norm" when it's actually dysfunctional.
2. Sharing intimate issues with someone of the opposite-sex.
Remember when you began getting to know your spouse? You both had deep conversation & shared things about one another that you very rarely shared with others. This is what connected you to each other, right?
The same goes for someone of the opposite-sex. If we're going to share intimate details with them too, we're going to create intimacy with them and create a connection to them. A bond will be created with them, and this can be even stronger than having a sexual relationship with them!
If your spouse is denying you that conversational outlet, we suggest talking with someone of the same-sex, a therapist, or pastor.
3. Telling someone of the opposite-sex the troubles of your marriage or relationship.
This is VERY dangerous. When we share what we're not getting in our marriage, how our partner is letting us down, or how unhappy we are, we're giving the clear message that we're open to someone else to take care of us.
We're also betraying the trust of our spouse by sharing intimate details of the marriage that they've not given us permission to share.
If any of the above 3 things sound familiar, please search within and address the deeper reasons for why this behavior may be happening. We have several more Warning Signs to share this week. Please check back in as they are all great preventative tools for marriage.
*Source: "12 Warning Signs That It's Emotional Infidelity - And Not Just Friendship" by Athena Staik, Ph.D.
Written by: Tamara Portee MA, LMHC, LCAC
*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.