Emotional Affairs

What is an emotional affair?

An emotional affair is a connection between two individuals that mimics the emotional intimacy of a romantic relationship without any physical expression. Emotional affairs often begin as friendships that develop into something more, sparked by shared interests, good times together, or online interactions. They can be considered cheating because they involve emotional engagement with someone who is not your intimate partner. An emotional affair can be caused by physical or emotional dissatisfaction in a relationship, unresolved childhood issues, or lack of communication


Why is an emotional affair harmful?

Emotional affairs can cause emotional distress and hurt to the partner involved in the committed relationship. They are often considered immoral because they involve a breach of trust and emotional commitment. Emotional affairs can lead to a breakdown of the committed relationship and even escalate into a physical affair, causing further harm to all parties involved. Trust is broken, and partners may feel betrayed and inadequate. Emotional affairs should be addressed quickly because they can be toxic to everyone involved. 

How to prevent an emotional affair?

One way to avoid an emotional affair is to focus on yourself and your relationship with your partner. If you feel disconnected or stagnant in the relationship, address those issues with your partner before seeking intimacy elsewhere. Emotional affairs can be prevented by being honest and open with your partner, avoiding assumptions, and communicating what you need from them. Set boundaries by asking what they want regarding the relationship and what they are willing to give you regarding emotional intimacy and commitment.

How to recognize an emotional affair?

Some who engage in emotional affairs may not recognize it and think it’s just a friendship. Signs that it is an emotional affair include sharing personal and relationship issues with the person, seeking their understanding and attention more than your partner’s, constantly thinking and talking about them, and comparing others against them. Emotional affairs can be the final step before a physical affair and can be more devastating to a relationship because of the intensity of the emotional connection.

What to do if you’re having an emotional affair?

Emotional affairs can start innocently but can escalate into something unhealthy. If you or your partner is having an emotional affair, it’s important to acknowledge it and commit to working on things together. The healing process includes having an honest conversation, processing your and your partner’s emotions, and rebuilding trust in the relationship. It takes hard work and patience, but with dedication and the willingness to prioritize the relationship over any outside influences, emotional affairs can be fixed. Make sure that your current relationship is now open to connection and emotional intimacy so that no one has a greater awareness of your partner’s emotional world than you do.¬†


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