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Falling in love with someone is one of the most beautiful experiences one can have. But as in the norm in our culture, with relationships or marriage, comes monogamy — and that can be tricky.

Granted, monogamy isn’t essential for everyone, but largely in the Indian society, it’s deemed to be an integral part of a relationship. Your love and loyalty to your significant other forms the very premise of a healthy relationship, which is exactly why cheating is almost always a huge deal.

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Let’s get one thing out of the way, though: watching pornography or harmlessly flirting with a coworker is not cheating. Au contraire, cheating isn’t always physical. Emotional cheating, at times, is much worse than hooking up on the sly.

So is there ever a rational explanation for cheating? Well, as it turns out, there is.

Instances where cheating could be defended:

(1) A loveless marriage

If two people are together solely under pressure from society or family (both of which are very real problems in India even today), one could argue that the absence of any real feelings justifies seeking affection elsewhere.

(2) A handicapped spouse

While you might love them to death, sex is a basic human need, after all. If your spouse is bedridden for life, one can’t simply be chaste forever. In such a situation, it is perhaps understandable to a certain degree.

(3) Refusal to grant a divorce

I mean, it’s India — there’s always arranged marriages that don’t work out but two people are forced to be together because families are involved and the usual tripe.

Also, there are instances where people fall out of love or are stuck in abusive relationships, and yet, don’t have a way out because they’re dependent on their spouses. In such a situation, one could make a case for the person if they seek love, comfort, or even even sex elsewhere.

Cheating for kicks

Having said that, there are people who cheat for the thrill, for the sex, or simply because they don’t care about their SO. And sure, there are people who forgive cheating by giving their partner a second chance, so to speak, but the damage is often already done.

There might be exceptions, but the truth is, once a cheater, always a cheater. So if they cheated on you, don’t stoop to their level. Dump them, let them go, and start a new life — you’ll feel much better about yourself.

Cheating isn’t always black and white. I’m not trying to find excuses to justify it, don’t get me wrong. But there are certain situations where a person chooses to do so because they are pushed into a dark corner and seek affection wherever they can find it.

No matter the situation, cheating shatters hearts. It ruins friendships, it destroys relationships, it breaks people. In certain circumstances as the ones mentioned above it may be understandable — excusable, even — but other than that, it’s difficult to see how it’s ever OK.

Have you ever cheated, been cheated on, or forgiven someone for the same? Share your opinions by commenting below.

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