Many people convince themselves that as long as there's no sex, it's not an affair. But it is. An affair really has to do with secrecy, deception of the partner and betrayal. It also has to do with the amount of emotional energy that you put into the other person and are no longer giving your partner. Most people are more disturbed by the breaking of trust than by the sex—it's what's most difficult to recover from when a partner has an affair.
Those involved in an emotional affair are often in denial. They don't think they're having an affair at all. The denial keeps them guilt-free, and they feel they don't have to give it up. They tell themselves, "It's just a friendship."
So how do you know if your relationship has evolved into an emotional affair?
- When most meetings and conversations are kept secret from your partner.
- When you say and do things with someone you never would do in front of your spouse.
- When you make a point to arrange private talk time with them.
- When you share stuff with them that you don't with your partner.