The New Rules Of Relationships Online: What Is Micro-Cheating?



Navigating a relationship in this day and time is infinitely much more complicated than it was before. With many new rules popping up, we zero in on this red flag to keep an eye on: Micro-cheating.

Related: Before You Start Dating, These Are The New Trends To Look Out For And Remember In 2020

Whether giving in to a personal happiness or simply following what the unwritten rule says, have you actually been navigating your relationship on social media correctly?

Let’s say your busy career or the hundred to thousand miles apart hinder you to commit 24/7 of your time to your partner. Yes, there are ways. I mean, if you love the person, how couldn’t there be ways? But practicality-wise, there’s nothing wrong with keeping the relationship strong in different facets, such as on social media. In fact, as people set aside the taboo on dating apps like Tinder, Bumble, Okcupid, Facebook Dating, and more, the growing number of online relationships have proved how genuine it could possibly be if you’re really on the lookout to find someone.

 

Thanks to photo sharing apps like Instagram and Facebook, you’re not just taking a record of your current romantic undertakings by uploading posts related to your relationship. The modern preamble “Pics or it didn’t happen” aside, it doubles as a reminder to your partner about what you do, where you are, who you’re with, and so on. 

For most relationships, having to talk to your S.O. on DMs is not enough. We often demand a life out of private messaging, depending of course on your specific love language. Following each other alone doesn’t get the job done. If you two have reached a special understanding in the relationship, you can’t expect them to just stick to doing the bare minimum. There has to be some form of acknowledgement that follows. And in the modern world we live, where the lives online and off are inextricably linked, the most basic form is liking each other’s posts, which is an understatement of appreciation. Should you leave a comment? Well, that’s another blushing moment, but it’s not part of the requirement. The rest of the compliments can be delivered via chat. Or you know, in person. 

Here’s the unsettled debate: Should you flex them on your social media account? Other couples would definitely go for this while others would like to keep things really private. There’s nothing wrong with either of the two for as long as you’ve mutually decided on how to maintain things and you’ve familiarized with balancing each other’s point-of-view on it. Posting a photo of them on your social media account can add a certain esteem to your partner. It’s like confidently telling their circle that they are happily in love. Yet if your partner prefers otherwise, it deserves an honest and truthful talk to agree on such assurance between the two of you.

However, from the increasing number of followers and following people, it seems like our social circle never stops expanding. As you spend time on social media and connect, could you be micro-cheating unnoticeably? It’s not how a rat fell into a trap. It’s being aware of what you’re doing, but then you become nonchalant to where it could lead you to and how you’ve been giving your partner a bitter pill. 

According to Ty Tashiro, psychologist and author of “The Science of Happily Ever After: What Really Matters in the Quest of Enduring Love,”  micro-cheating is a relatively small act of emotional infidelity with someone outside of a person’s committed relationship. So, that said, what could possibly fall under micro-cheating? 

There are thresholds to being friendly, if that’s the excuse. To set forth examples of micro-cheating, recount the times you had been unconsciously doing a perceived foul play, and honestly check if you fall into these acts. The most obvious is if you keep on using dating apps and swiping on more potentials, regularly messaging an ex-partner, or trying your best to keep an online conversation going with some random “friend.” However, other more mundane acts could also stack up to bigger issues if left unnoticed, such as leaving a comment or reacting to a story with hopes of receiving a message reply, and more that involves an unfavorable intent, giving a blameless person the green light to flirt back. 

No matter how much you look at it, cheating is still cheating. Whether it is a minor or major discretion, it has to come to an end before it could even get worse as to slowly harming your existing relationship. Or you know, at the very least, communicate any level of discomfort with your significant other and set the ground rules and boundaries on this unique circumstance. Don’t ever think of it as stifling your relationship, especially if it is a rigor that will ultimately make things more secure between the two of you.

As it is always a choice, it takes no valid reason to cheat on your partner. Keeping the fire burning in a relationship is one tough battle for both sides, especially if you rarely have the time to see each other. But with the love that only gets stronger despite the distance, liabilities, and pressure, a relationship doesn’t always have to elicit the reaction everyone blurts out these days: It’s complicated.

Because really, when it is real, it is anything but, right?

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