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Do you think an affair can be harmless if it's never discovered?

(241 Posts)
Dietxokebreak Thu 17-Oct-13 18:23:54

And if its mainly physical, neither party had any intention of leaving their partner and it's conducted at times they would be away from their families anyway?

Locketjuice Thu 17-Oct-13 18:26:48

It's never harmless.
Feelings change you see people differently

cupcake78 Thu 17-Oct-13 18:27:26

IMO affairs are always destructive. Even if never found out the people having the affair change.

Be it an ability to live with guilt or to cut off from it. Usually an affair doesn't last and you come out damaged in some way as a result.

An affair is never a good idea!

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 17-Oct-13 18:35:37

It's possible but it requires both parties to 100% adhere to the conditions you state in order for it to work and maintain complete discretion. However, even something that starts out purely physical and is intended to remain purely physical can end up becoming an emotional connection. Then people can get hurt.

MissScatterbrain Thu 17-Oct-13 18:39:04

No because the betrayed partner will feel things have changed but won't be able to put their finger on it. The cheater's behaviour will be different.

Secrets and deceit are destructive.

fieldfare Thu 17-Oct-13 18:41:06

It's never harmless. Have some respect for yourself and your partner.

ScaryFucker Thu 17-Oct-13 18:46:53

No, because looking at it from the cheater's POV (ooo, that's a novelty for me...) how could you fail to lose respect for the person who have deceived and made a mug of ? To look at them and be aware how much they are oblivious to. It takes a certain kind of cruelty to think there is "no harm" in that.

Are you a cheater, OP ?

Or are you being told by a cheater that they thought as long as they get away with it, no harm is done ?

VerySmallSqueak Thu 17-Oct-13 18:47:00

I think it can be harmless to the innocent party if they never find out. What you don't know doesn't hurt you.
But they'd need to be completely and utterly unaware with no suspicions whatsoever.
Which I think is living in cloud cuckoo land if anyone thinks that can happen.

But it's not harmless to the person having the affair.

If you're looking for an excuse for an affair op (and I'm not saying you are),I can't give you one.

People need to have the decency to end one thing before they start another.

worsestershiresauce Thu 17-Oct-13 18:57:05

"No because the betrayed partner will feel things have changed but won't be able to put their finger on it. The cheater's behaviour will be different"

^ This

Cheaters are depressing to live with. They become cold, critical, and remote. Their partner is left feeling rejected and lonely, without understanding why.

Onebuddhaisnotenough Thu 17-Oct-13 19:09:58

The only people who use this as an excuse for affairs are the type of people who HAVE affairs. The selfish, spineless pathetic lying type of person.

lalalonglegs Thu 17-Oct-13 19:21:58

I know people who have been married to people having affairs and haven't had a clue (and some still don't). I think it's part of the narrative of just desserts that the philandering partner's behaviour always changes and their partner always has suspicions. Some people are extremely good at covering their tracks.

I also know people who have had affairs (albeit very short ones) and they have made them realise that (a) the grass isn't always greener (b) they really value their partners. As a consequence, they've put a great deal of effort into their marriages.

But I've known some really depressing and flagrant cheaters who have humiliated their partners because they were too cowardly to call time on a marriage/relationship that they weren't entirely committed to.

So, in conclusion: yes, an affair can be harmless if it isn't discovered and doesn't last very long and everyone behaves sensibly afterwards. But that's quite rare

EdithWeston Thu 17-Oct-13 19:27:33

It deprives the primary relationship of some of its intimacy; by removal of time, attention, planning , buzz. Just think how much better it would be if the effort of running an affair were out into the parent, home and family.

If undiscovered, then perhaps the drama and devastation does not occur. But the primary relationship and definitely suffered.

Also because information is power. The one kept in the dark is being controlled. The person they are meant to be able to trust above all other is withholding from them. It's a pernicious imbalance.

MissScatterbrain Thu 17-Oct-13 19:34:07

I know people who have been married to people having affairs and haven't had a clue (and some still don't).

I didn't and put down the changes in him to work & family stress and things being hum drum. It was a horrible time for me and it was only when I found out he was cheating that everything made sense.

The cheater will naturally put more energy and effort in the affair than in the marriage.

yeghoulsandlittledevils Thu 17-Oct-13 19:41:27

No, I think the deceit would be a flaw in the relationship. It might not be obvious to the innocent party, they might not be able to detect it, but the relationship would not be the same as the one where there had been no affair.

I also think it is cruel. Own up and give the innocent one(s) the right to the truth.

ScaryFucker Thu 17-Oct-13 19:42:24

So, OP. Are you going to tell us why you are asking ?

Leavenheath Thu 17-Oct-13 19:44:08

What does mainly physical mean?

And why are you posing this question?

There is an absolute myth that something's only wrong if you get found out. So for me, it's not a question of what's harmful or harmless. Deceiving other people and lying to them is just wrong.

lunar1 Thu 17-Oct-13 19:47:17

Sti's are Never harmless.

cantthinkofagoodone Thu 17-Oct-13 19:51:10

This is silly. If you want to sleep with someone else, end your relationship. It IS that black and white.

ColderThanAWitchsTitty Thu 17-Oct-13 19:53:00

Why do you assume you wouldn't find out or act in such a way that would make your partner feel untrusting of you? How would you then handle your partners mistrust?

cupcake78 Thu 17-Oct-13 19:53:44

I also know of serial cheaters who are sadly still married to very lovely people.

It does affect the relationship. The cheater begins to think they are cleverer than they really are. The mental and physical energy and time that is going into cheating could be invested into the marriage. It makes a mockery of the innocent party.

The only people who think its a good idea are those who are considering it or those who are already doing it.

Deceit and living a hidden life does cause internal conflict. To think you can do this and it not affect a relationship is arrogant. But then it takes arrogance to think its an ok thing to do and to think you will get away with it!

ScaryFucker Thu 17-Oct-13 20:01:08

Are you going to answer our questions or not, OP ?

str8tothepoint Thu 17-Oct-13 20:02:23

it would just mean the relationship they are currently in is fake and sorry for the DP as they are at risks of STI's and also never living life with someone who is totally devoted to them and only them

Lazysuzanne Thu 17-Oct-13 20:23:44

It's impossible to know..of course there is a good argument that it is morally wrong, but no one gets to know about affairs which are kept secret, we only get to hear about the ones which are discovered and the ensuing trauma, this leads to a belief that all affairs will cause trauma.

ScaryFucker Thu 17-Oct-13 20:26:59

If I don't see a tree fall in the woods, it has still fallen

RadagastTheBrown Thu 17-Oct-13 20:27:29

Easiest answer ever. No and you knew that before asking - don't look to us to validate what you are considering. Cheating on someone is wrong, end of!

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