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Old 09-30-2017, 04:16 AM
Al99 Al99 is offline
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Default "Why Happy People Cheat"

From the October 2017 Edition of the Atlantic - an interesting article that will probably resonate with most poly folks -

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine...-cheat/537882/
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Old 10-01-2017, 04:43 PM
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It's good that the article doesn't totally villainize cheating. Affairs tend to have a complex underpinning. While I don't condone them, I am interested in understanding them. Perel offers some interesting food for thought, arising from decades of experience. I am actually left with the question, "How is it that some people manage to not cheat?" Some people are not even tempted to cheat. Why is that?
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Old 10-02-2017, 09:41 AM
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I am actually left with the question, "How is it that some people manage to not cheat?" Some people are not even tempted to cheat. Why is that?
Because they have respect for themselves, their partner, and other people?

I have to admit I didn't make it past the first paragraph. I'm hoping the article didn't condone that woman's behavior and attitude.
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Old 10-02-2017, 09:50 PM
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I felt it was a pretty good article. It's a bit long but I think it's worth reading.
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Old 10-06-2017, 11:15 AM
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The article is indeed worth reading, especially for people who are quick to judge and dismiss affairs, assuming that affairs are all the same: "wrong."
Thanks for posting.


"In taking a dual perspective on such an inflammatory subject, I’m aware that I risk being labeled “pro-affair,” or accused of possessing a compromised moral compass. Let me assure you that I do not approve of deception or take betrayal lightly. I sit with the devastation in my office every day. But the intricacies of love and desire don’t yield to simple categorizations of good and bad, victim and perpetrator. Not condemning does not mean condoning, and there is a world of difference between understanding and justifying. My role as a therapist is to create a space where the diversity of experiences can be explored with compassion. People stray for a multitude of reasons, I have discovered, and every time I think I have heard them all, a new variation emerges.
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Old 10-06-2017, 01:14 PM
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The article is indeed worth reading, especially for people who are quick to judge and dismiss affairs, assuming that affairs are all the same: "wrong."
Thanks for posting.


"In taking a dual perspective on such an inflammatory subject, Iím aware that I risk being labeled ďpro-affair,Ē or accused of possessing a compromised moral compass. Let me assure you that I do not approve of deception or take betrayal lightly. I sit with the devastation in my office every day. But the intricacies of love and desire donít yield to simple categorizations of good and bad, victim and perpetrator. Not condemning does not mean condoning, and there is a world of difference between understanding and justifying. My role as a therapist is to create a space where the diversity of experiences can be explored with compassion. People stray for a multitude of reasons, I have discovered, and every time I think I have heard them all, a new variation emerges.
"
Except where one is in an abusive relationship, can you name an instance in which it is okay to lie and cheat on one's partner?
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Old 10-07-2017, 11:36 AM
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Except where one is in an abusive relationship, can you name an instance in which it is okay to lie and cheat on one's partner?
History and the present world are filled to choking with the ashes of relationships that were/are considered wrong, irresponsible, disrespectful, an abomination, offensive, selfish, dangerous and unethical - yet love continues to sprout in many places where it "shouldn't." The social parameters of what's accepted keep changing and love keeps finding ways to offend and challenge the majority view on what is "right." I figure that this is so far beyond my scope that it serves no helpful purpose for me to judge anyone for expressing love in any way. I'm far more interested in trying to understand the unrelenting call of the many forms of love than in deeming who is right and who is wrong for following it.

Esther Perel, the author of the posted article, is a fairly well respected Belgian psychotherapist and speaker whose latest book delves into the fact of infidelity and to dismiss her explorations because affairs are "wrong" is to miss a depth in understanding relationships today. She's always worth a read and a listen.
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Old 10-08-2017, 02:54 PM
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I agree with everything you say, but that didn't address my question of honesty.
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Old 10-10-2017, 02:49 PM
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I too am feeling some cognitive dissonance, right from the title.

True enough, I am anti-Romantic & firmly believe that soft-skulled Romance is a major cause of many (if not most) relational ills.

But even setting that prejudice aside, I cannot see good reason to justify cheating, lying, subterfuge, gaslighting, manipulation, & so forth, all of which are generally allowed -- even apparently necessary -- to preserve ever-sacred Romance. IMO, refusing to call an illness "illness" makes it no less an illness, & perhaps moreso.

The vast majority of people ARE NOT at risk of losing huge fortunes, sprawling estates, royal titles, lofty positions in church or state. It is (at absolute best) disingenous to put proles in that category. Moreover, though divorce was rare enough when I was a kid (1960s) & even widowed singles were looked at somewhat askance, it hardly causes a turned eyelash nowadays.

I cannot put marital infidelity in the same slot as being a closeted homosexual. Not so long back, being gay (or even thought to be) put a person at risk of every sort of discrimination, up to & including murder. Call it a wild guess, but I figure very few cheating spouses are ever killed for it.

And I'm quite willing to accept that some will paint such an attitude as "being on a moral high-horse."

Nevertheless, I've got to have the concept of "good cheating" as in the same region with "positive abuse."

FallenAngelina, you continue to make an interesting case in strong support of people who claim one thing & do quite another, & often make a big show about demanding punishment of others who are doing pretty much as they are -- look up Tim Murphy.

That's fine. But at what point would you say "enough is too much"? For instance, what would you say to justify someone who's not just cheating on a spouse with their One True Love, but has begun hiding other sexual encounters from THAT person as well? What is the rationale for someone who has a new "partner" every few months? Where is the partition?

How would you respond to find that your "partner" has been hiding a One True Love from you?
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Last edited by Ravenscroft; 10-10-2017 at 02:51 PM.
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Old 10-12-2017, 03:27 AM
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I don't read it as "cheating is good", more as "cheating is cheating, and it's more useful to try to understand the reasons behind it than to just yell "evil" at the person and end it there". So I don't think it's about it being a good thing, just that the people who cheat aren't necessarily horrible people, they're just imperfect people and understanding what is going on in the background is a good idea if you're going to be their counselor, rather than judging them.
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