Talk

Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Fidelity...when is it important?

(57 Posts)
NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 21:54:14

What are the rules of the game?

If a guy has a girlfriend, is it OK to go after him if you like him? If not, how do people meet Mr/Ms Right? We'd all most likely stay with the first person we started going out with.

If a guy is in a long term relationship but not living with his girlfriend?

If he's living with his girlfriend?

If a guy is engaged, is it still OK to go after him? What if he's making a mistake and can't see that you're the one for him?

If they've got kids together (and are together) but not living together?

If they have got kids together and are living together?

If they are married?

All different grades of commitment. I just see marriage as the ultimate contract. I know people don't see it as that anymore, but I just think if marriage isn't a contract to commitment and is 'just a piece of paper', then why does anybody get upset when they are cheated on, be it a husband/wife/girlfriend/babyfather whatever.

Why do we insist on fidelity especially when we don't believe in marriage?

Hassled Tue 02-Apr-13 21:59:49

You're seeing things as very black and white here, and the reality is much greyer.

Humans are more naturally monogamous than not, and so we insist on fidelity because an important part of most relationships is trust that the monogamy will be maintained. Most people need to know they are the only one - there are probably evolutionary reasons for this. And that's true regardless of the existence of a marriage certificate.

kinkyfuckery Tue 02-Apr-13 22:05:55

If not, how do people meet Mr/Ms Right? We'd all most likely stay with the first person we started going out with.

Not all relationships break up because of infidelity, yunno?

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 22:13:36

I'm only asking because I'm newly divorced and the amount of married men I've had proposition me is unreal. In the past two years there have only been two single guys ask me out.

I'm starting to feel as if it is normal now, and marriage doesn't mean to a man: 'I won't try to engage in sexual banter with other women any more'

One (married) guy made a really sleazy sexual comment to me in front of a friend of mine. She later laughed and said she just thinks he's sexually frustrated. Made me think I am the abnormal one for being a bit insulted that he had said that to me.

badinage Tue 02-Apr-13 22:16:12

It was always very simple for me.

If a bloke was involved elsewhere at all, he was of no interest to me. No way was I playing second fiddle to anyone and no way would I shit on another woman.

But I managed just fine because I ended relationships that had run out of steam before starting anything with someone else and my partners did the same.

You might not believe in marriage or fidelity, but there's no 'we' about it. You can't speak for everyone else.

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 22:20:00

Oh, but I do believe in marriage.

I'm saying anything less than that and there's not really a case for 'you bitch/bastard, how could you do this to me'

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 22:21:51

kinky yes, I know...I suppose what I was trying to say is if we stayed with the person we were with even though we met someone better suited to us we'd be doing ourselves a disservice.

badinage Tue 02-Apr-13 22:22:21

Gah....there will always be people who think a newly single person is fair game and desperate for sexual attention. I doubt your friend's right in her 'sexual frustration' excuses for that bloke's scummy behaviour.

It probably happens to you more because some idiot blokes think sexual harrassment is okay as long as there's no bloke around to object to it. Some neanderthals only stay away from married or attached women because they think they'd be treading on another man's property rights and it's got nothing to do with their own ethics or respect for their own partner or other women.

I think you need to start moving in different circles if this is the type of man you keep encountering. Meanwhile, develop a nice selection of withering replies.

badinage Tue 02-Apr-13 22:23:47

You sound like you're talking yourself into something with an attached bloke, as long as he isn't married.

I couldn't do that.

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 22:28:24

Ha ha, believe it or not the latest one happened at church!

I agree with the property thing...I was never propositioned throughout 10 years of marriage!

I think they must think I'm desperate as there's not even a pretense of romance, just straight into 'ooh, I'm imagining you naked in my bed' . confused

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 22:29:07

you're pretty astute badinage

chocolatecakeystuff Tue 02-Apr-13 22:35:25

How about never ? If he's with someone why can't you leave him be. If he wanted you he would leave her before starting something.

I don't understand anyone who chases after someone who is unavailable. Since when has it ever been acceptable?

If he's cheated on her... he'll cheat on you.

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 22:38:23

Yeah, I agree with that mantra.

Just asking about the moral rights and wrongs of it.

Zilvernblue Tue 02-Apr-13 22:49:52

If a guy has a girlfriend, is it OK to go after him if you like him? If not, how do people meet Mr/Ms Right? We'd all most likely stay with the first person we started going out with

Have actually thought about this one and I can only conclude that many people treat a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship with the same respect that they do marriage. I know so many couples, my previous relationship included, where they have been together with one person from their twenties and got married perhaps 10 or 12 years later. And of course, in my case, that meant I was stuck in a relationship that had gone stale because we were aiming for the ultimate goal of marriage, when in fact it caused me to miss out on many opportunities while there were still plenty of decent single guys out there.

That said, I do the same thing - it puts me right off a man when they have a girlfriend. I completely lose interest in them, and they become completely undesirable in my eyes.

I think in practice what people do is that they pretend they're single if they meet someone else they really like...

I know what you mean about married men too. Its rife. Some of them are so crude and just seem to have no boundaries. But its guys with girlfriends too. I've had 4 in total with girlfriends come onto me, but I honestly think I could be a private investigator, I've got a real sense for sniffing them out, and its always been messy because I've stopped them before anything happens.

I do think some men think a woman without a man is a terrible thing, and they are doing you a great favour by offering their "services".

Xales Tue 02-Apr-13 23:03:08

Why go after any one who is committed? If you get them it puts you in the position of then being with that person knowing how little commitment really means to them. Or would you not be upset if they did the same to you but rather spend your relationship waiting for/expecting it? What a nice way to live.

If you don't get them you look like a twat deliberately trying to separate happy couples and many of your friends may not want you around them or their other half any more.

If in any way involved in a romantic/sexual relationship with another I would avoid.

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 23:06:31

See, I've never been put off a guy with a girlfriend. Engaged or married, yes.

I asked one of the single guys I dated last year why he didn't marry his ex...'because neither of us loved the other enough to get married' was his reply. They had two children, 14 and 11 and had been together 16 years.

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 23:10:37

Xales, I'm not talking about going after, more accepting the advances of.

I know a guy like that is not a keeper. After three years celebate though, you start going a bit crazy!

bestsonever Tue 02-Apr-13 23:14:26

If you need to ask, I'd say your scruples are perhaps a little lower than some. It seems obvious and pointless to be chasing someone you know is attached on any level. The damage caused perhaps gets bigger the higher up the scale you are prepared to go - when kids involved or marriage. But tbh, any decent person with self-respect would not entertain the idea at the BF/GF stage and would not need to ask or have it spelt out. You can't find a way justify it, just because you fancy it.

NoseyNameChanger Tue 02-Apr-13 23:25:20

I find that interesting. I really feel the boyfriend/girlfriend stage is insignificant. Somebody being dumped because their boyfriend/girlfriend has met someone they like more seems normal to me.

badinage Wed 03-Apr-13 01:57:10

Well that's never been normal to me and I've got an army of kids, nieces and nephews spanning a wide age range and it's not normal to them either. To me, it's pretty unhealthy never to spend any time on your own after a relationship has ended; always having to create an 'overlap'. I've known folk do that of course, but in my experience are the sort of whinyarse losers I tend to avoid in life, because they aren't 'complete' without a romance and have very little about their characters to sustain any interest.

Regarding that knobber you were dating, I go back to what I said earlier. You need to start moving in different circles.

But if you're not that bothered about fidelity on either side and you just want some sex, that's as easy as falling off a log. But go for a friends with benefit arrangement (or series of encounters if that's your bag) with someone who's not pretending to another woman that he's monogamous.

No shag is worth shitting on another woman - step away OP.

jynier Wed 03-Apr-13 02:06:58

Hear! Hear! badinage (she won't take any notice, of course!).

lottieandmia Wed 03-Apr-13 02:44:05

I think that going after someone who you know isn't single is a shoddy way to behave. There are plenty of single people so why do you need to chase someone who is with someone else?

I think we've all been propositioned by married men. What I did was tell them to fuck off.

lottieandmia Wed 03-Apr-13 02:49:02

'I really feel the boyfriend/girlfriend stage is insignificant.'

If everyone thought like that then nobody would be able to build any sort of foundation of trust for a proper relationship.

If you don't believe in monogamy, then you will be able to find plenty of like minded people who are open about it and don't cheat and who have agreed open relationships. That is an honest way to behave rather than trying to screw up someone else's relationship just because you personally don't think it is important if there is no piece of paper to say they are married.

Mosman Wed 03-Apr-13 04:38:02

The penny has just dropped with my ex's tart that married guys aren't careful with your heart or trustworthy. Shame it didn't happen before she got into bed with him but even that low life will think twice before getting involved with an unavailable man again even if its for her sake.

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 03-Apr-13 06:56:29

I think you can 'go after' anyone you like... (makes it sound like a fox-hunt hmm) They're under no obligation to respond and, if they're with someone else, they probably won't respond. If they do respond, just remember that it's ridiculously easy to get someone to sleep with you... means nothing. smile

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now