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chelle21689's avatar

Is it cheating if you're unofficial?

Asked by chelle21689 (7582points) April 29th, 2011

I’ve been seeing this guy for almost 3 months now and we like each other. We never had the “relationship” talk or talked about being exclusive but I have a good feeling that he wants to head that way.

Just out of curiosity, if I went on a date or kissed some other guy would that be cheating? I’m not interested in anyone else, I’m just wondering. If he did that to some other girl I’d be very jealous but I don’t think it’s cheating if there’s no commitment made right?

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29 Answers

Seelix's avatar

It’s cheating if the other partner feels it is. There’s no one definition.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Well, it depends…if you’re not officially together, no it’s not cheating…yet if he feels you are, he’ll think it is.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I think that one has to have some sort of commitment before it would be considered cheating.
Just because you are dating someone,doesn’t mean you have exclusivity.

wundayatta's avatar

What you say or don’t say really doesn’t matter. If you say it, that don’t make it so. If you don’s say it, that don’t mean it ain’t so.

What matters is what you do. You have never said anything, but let’s just say you are doing what you would expect to be doing in a relationship. Then, you’re in a relationship. Then, if you were to get intimate with someone else, and that would bother your partner, then you are cheating. If you are cheating by your own account, it is cheating. If you have to question it, it is cheating.

Unofficial or official don’t make no difference. The truth is on the ground, not written on some tablets on some mountain.

Winters's avatar

This is a very easily disturbed balance, you say it seems that he wants to go mutually exclusive, thus if he were to find out… it could be bad

Dutchess_III's avatar

I agree with everyone. You’re talking semantics.

chelle21689's avatar

I’m not interested in anyone else, I was just wondering about the situation if it were to happen.

I just have a feeling he’s not seeing anyone and that his time and emotions are invested in me even though he never talked about a relationship.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

You’ve got three months invested with the guy, you’re thinking relationship, and you’re asking this question. I think that’s your answer right there.

chelle21689's avatar

Hmm…I guess I have a different opinion than everyone else. I think if there is no commitment made then it’s not cheating. Not saying I wouldn’t feel guilty.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@chelle21689 It really doesn’t matter what you feel. It matters what he feels. If you’re willing to take the risk of losing him, then experiment.

chelle21689's avatar

Again, this is HYPOTHETICAL! lol I mean, if he did date around I’d feel hurt yeah but like I said there’s no commitment so I can’t say it’s cheating or that he doesn’t have the right to have options.

Seaofclouds's avatar

Personally, I don’t think it’s cheating if you aren’t in a relationship and you haven’t decided to be monogamous. That being said, like the others have said, if he feels differently, it won’t matter because he’ll still feel like you cheated on him. If you are at the point of thinking about it (just where things are in the relationship that is) and questioning things like this, then it sounds like it’s time for a chat to make sure you are both on the same page.

dabbler's avatar

If you have not made a commitment to each other, explicitly, to be exclusive in your relationship then you are not except coincidentally. If that’s what you want, have the conversation, I encourage you to take that step and ‘go steady’ with him if he wants to also.
Bring it up gently, that’s a classic thing for people to flee from (OMG commitment!), maybe mention you are thinking about your relationship and how it growing on you and becoming special, so what do you think honey?
Counting on an implied promise is risky. The actual promise of exclusivity will make a BIG difference if either of you encounters someone else who may be interesting. You will have made a mutual commitment to forgo others.

Kardamom's avatar

You don’t have to have an official “relationship talk” to be in an official relationship. It’s almost the exact opposite. There’s kind of an unspoken idea that when you are dating someone for 3 months, that you are exclusive. People who don’t want to be in exclusive monogamous relationships usually are very vocal about that at the very beginning.

And then there’s the douchey ones who want to date other people (secretly) whilst enjoying the “benefits” of an exclusive relationship. Those people act like their in an exclusive relationship, but sneak around with other people without bothering to tell the other person.

If you’ve been together three months, and it’s not clear to you at this point whether or not you are in an exclusive relationship (or that he considers himself to be your boyfriend) you should probably bring it up this weekend. If you don’t want that kind of a comittment at this point in time, you should probably let him know. He probably thinks that you guys are together and that you are boyfriend and girlfriend, even if no one has said those words.

Leaving things in a nebulous state is always likely to cause one or both persons heart-ache down the line. Be clear and up front with people from the get go.

ucme's avatar

Nah, dates don’t mean you’re manacled. Plenty of fish in the sea, if you know where the best catch lies.

dabbler's avatar

@Kardamom “probably” is true, but it won’t make you feel any better or give you any ground to stand on if you find out your assumption about the “unspoken idea” is wrong. Maybe that’s typical in your experience.
@ucme is right, dates don’t mean you’re manacled.
If the relationship is having a substantial effect on you I suggest don’t make assumptions about it. Make it real or find out he thinks differently, either way you know where you stand and won’t get your heart broken by an unnecessary surprise when you’re more invested.

Hibernate's avatar

It’s not cheating since you are not in a relationship

lonelydragon's avatar

Unless there was a prior agreement to remain exclusive, then no, it’s not cheating. That’s why it’s important to talk with your date about exclusivity to find out if you’re on the same page instead of simply assuming.

marinelife's avatar

It would not actually be cheating, but you should clarify you relationship status before going forward with anything.

BarnacleBill's avatar

I don’t you actually have to say, “Hey, it’s a relationship!” for it to be a relationship. It’s a relationship if you pretty much expect to do something with the other person each weekend. If you found out he asked someone else out or was seen kissing a girl in a bar, would you be bothered? If so, you’re in a relationship.

BarnacleBill's avatar

Correction to sentence ”I don’t think you actually have to say…”

Kardamom's avatar

I agree with @BarnacleBill I think that some of us in here that are closer to middle aged and above tend to think that you are in an exclusive relationship if you see each other all the time, do “relationship” types of things such as making out and going on dates and spending the night with each other, talking lovey-dovey to each other and have been doing so for three months, even if you haven’t said in specific terms that you are “in a relationship” or that you are “boyfriend and girlfriend”. For people our age, that is implied.

We don’t really understand what “hooking up” means exactly. Some 20 somethings say it’s sex, other, even younger kids, call “hooking up” what we used to call either going on a date (in some cases) or making out at a party (in other cases).

So I guess the bottom line is that you should figure out what your relationship actually is. Hopefully soon (like tonight), and then go from there. No one, in this day and age, should ever assume anything.

By the way @chelle21689 Have you given any more thought to whether or not you think this guy might be the one, even if he doesn’t give you such stimulating conversations or make you feel weak in the knees? If you think he’s not the one, you should probably cut him loose soon. If I was him, and we’d been going out for 3 months, I’d think that we were not only exclusive, but that we were a real couple, not just 2 people hanging out or hooking up. I understand that some people take a longer time to “feel” love for their partner, but you are kind of already in a relationship with him (whether anybody else agrees with me or not) and you probably shouldn’t be in a relationship with him if you’re not feeling it. Otherwise you’ll end up creating a situation for him that is similar to a couple of threads that I’ve read recently where someone was dumped out of the blue and they have no idea why, because everything appeared to be happy and normal.

If you don’t mind sharing, are you guys physically intimate yet? If so, does that make you feel anything for him besides lust? Any feelings of love yet? Are his conversations getting more deep or interesting to you yet? Please talk to him this weekend and try to establish where you guys are in this relationship. Be open and honest.

nikipedia's avatar

It’s probably not cheating, but if you think it would hurt him, it certainly doesn’t seem very nice.

Do you want to have an exclusive relationship with him? Or do you want to be free to date other people, and to give him the same freedom?

SofaKingWright's avatar

Your question… seems to have answered itself. If you are unofficial, how could you be officially cheating?

dabbler's avatar

@Kardamom I’m like middle-age, despite how likely I am to be child-like, but I’d say do not make assumptions about something as important as your significant-other relationship. If it doesn’t matter to you what he does then no worries, if it does then what do you have to lose defining your relationship more solidly. You have a lot to gain if you have mutual interest in that. I’ve been on both ends of a misunderstanding about that and it’s not comfortable for anyone. It’s worth discussing when it feels like it’s important.
However @Hibernate I’d say they are definitely in a relationship, it’s just not committed to mutual exclusivity (yet?).

Randy's avatar

I wouldn’t do anything that I wouldn’t want the person I was interested in to do.

captainsmooth's avatar

If you were with someone else, how would you feel the next time you saw the guy you’ve been seeing?

Would you feel like it is not really any of his business what you do when you aren’t with him or would you feel like you cheated?

john65pennington's avatar

Lonelydragon is 100% correct.

emeraldisles's avatar

I don’t think that its necessarily cheating if your not exlcusive.I’m not saying to go and do god knows what with whatever guy but it doesn’t mean you can’t date and see other people. If you are exlcusive it s cheating. If he wants the freedom to date other people while he sees other peopleyou shouldbe able to do the same. If he gives you an attitude or an issue about you dating other people because he wants to do whatever the heck he wants,butwants you to wait then there’s a player for you.

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