Analysis / Your Cheating Heart

Incidentally, contrary to popular opinion, nowadays cheating is generally regarded with more severity than in the past (see philosopher Alain de Botton), likely because of new views on the role of love in the context of a relationship and the existence of divorce making it possible to resolve the situation in an honest, respectful manner for everyone involved, without resorting to deception. Generally, most people tend to see the betrayal of the partner's trust as the distinguishing feature of infidelity. The argument is that while the mechanics of the act (either romantic—the definition being "a breach of an expectation of sexual and/or emotional exclusivity ", means that it doesn't have to necessarily be explicitly sexual—like a date, or a kiss, or explicitly sexual, like petting, oral sex or intercourse) might be relevant in judging its gravity, more than about a romantic or sexual encounter with a person different from the "official" lover, infidelity has to do with the lack of honesty in the relationship, and therefore the necessary condition is the abuse of the partner's trust (see, for example, open marriage and polifidelity, where sexual, and in the second case, even romantic, encounters with multiple partners are not, in fact, viewed as cheating).