Being Honest About an Emotional Affair Is the Quickest Way to Ruin Your Marriage

Most women say that an emotional affair is just as devastating -- sometimes even more so -- than a purely physical encounter. One therapist says that you should inform your spouse if you're thinking or fantasizing about another person. Err, what?! I'm a HUGE believer in honesty, but what would be the point in telling your partner you've got a crush on your coworker?

Tammy Nelson writes:

Preventing emotional infidelity may be as simple as (and this is actually harder than it sounds) telling the truth. In order to avoid an affair, you and your partner have to accept that it is natural and normal to be emotionally and physically attracted to other people. And if you find yourself fantasizing about this other person, tell on yourself before it goes any further.

Hey, there's admitting you have a crush on Robert Pattinson and then there's admitting you have a crush on Don, the dude from accounting.


Tammy -- who has either never had a crush or has a VERY understanding husband -- goes on:

It is easier to talk about now than it will be later, after the emotional affair has developed into something more complicated. A word of advice: telling your partner means being honest about your feelings. It doesn't mean using specific details. Be open and honest about your concerns and let your partner know that you want to be clear about your feelings before they turn into something more.

It is normal to be attracted to someone with whom you have developed an emotional connection. But moving that relationship into something sexual is the next step, and it is potentially dangerous for your relationship. If you are in a relationship and afraid you might cheat, talk to your partner today and be honest about your feelings.

OMG, can you imagine?! Coming home and telling hubster you've got the hots for Don means you'll be lucky if you have a job tomorrow! Let's get real here. Let's talk about how else you can solve the problem of a crush without making your spouse nutty with unwarranted jealousy:

1. Be honest with yourself about why you have a crush. Are you developing a relationship with someone besides your partner because you truly can't talk to your partner about certain things? Or because you and your partner truly have lost the spark and magic? Then work on that. Be honest with your partner about the things you feel you've LOST, not that you think you've found this with someone else. If you haven't crossed the line into blatant emotional affair nor cheating, then you need to find out what is drawing you to that other person that might harm your marriage.

2. Yes, everyone has crushes. If you don't let crushes get away from you -- to the point where you are obsessing, or acting on it, or trying to act on it -- then is it really so bad? Can't you keep this thing to yourself? For god's sake, don't start emailing and texting flirty stuff, because that will always get found out. (Plus, you shouldn't do that anyway.) But if you're sitting there thinking, "Man, he's smokin'," can you not just do that and keep your trap and your legs shut about it?

3. Don't make a crush into an emotional affair. Tammy does bring up some good points. Like what behavior brings you into unacceptable emotional affair territory. Calling after hours, complaining about your spouse, etc. If you start doing that, there is something called self-restraint. Learn how to use it. Realize this crush will NOT solve all your problems. Or even a fraction of them. Talk to your spouse about your marriage. And get therapy or read books so you can figure out what is making YOU feel empty.

4. Ask yourself if you want to be free to pursue your crush. If so, then by all means, talk to your partner. In fact, break up with him or her if you plan on bringing your crush candies, flowers, and love notes.

Telling your partner that you are fantasizing or thinking about someone else is dangerous territory. Yes, it might be honest. But there is such a thing as too much honesty. Married people don't need to share every tiny thought that jumps into their brains!

The exception here would be if you are thinking about the same sex. If you are gay or think you might be, you really need to talk to your partner. Even if that means confessing about Don, the dude from accounting.

Should you tell your partner when you have a crush?


Image via iStock

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