HEY BESTIE: I’ve just discovered my husband has been on Tinder. Needless to say, I was devastated. He claims he hasn’t cheated but it feels like he has. He said he just downloaded the app for a bit of fun and to have a look, but I don’t think I can get past this. What should I do?
Most people don’t enter relationships anticipating that their significant other will be looking elsewhere for another partner.
In this scenario, your husband is using an online dating app to search for what else might be available. . .even if he hasn’t yet physically met anyone from the app – which might be the reason he has mentioned that he ”hasn’t cheated”.
Your definition of cheating might be vastly different to your partner’s, and it would be ideal to get extremely clear on what those definitions are.
You need to be clear — like black/white rather than shades of grey — with whether online flirting, searching, etc. is considered cheating and a no-go zone for the relationship.
If it is, let your partner know.
It sounds ridiculous that I even must mention this, but I have clients who regularly explain that if they aren’t physically or sexually involved with someone else, then it doesn’t count as cheating.
Only you can determine that for yourself and your own relationship.
The next approach would be to have a conversation with one another. Set some time aside, sit down and make sure that there are no distractions. Take the time to truly talk and listen to one another.
Some of the questions you might want to ask are:
Do you still want to be in a relationship?
If so, what would our relationship look like moving forward?
What was the purpose of joining and looking around Tinder?
What is your definition of cheating?
Once you’ve had the conversation. You then need to figure out the best outcome for yourself and the relationship.
People typically reach out in search of another partner when things within the relationship aren’t great. If you haven’t yet spoken to a professional, this might be a good time to do so.
Pay attention: If this sounds like your relationship, start talking to one another!
There’s a distance between the two of you – either mental or physical – both are important to pay attention to.
Your partner is becoming secretive – especially around the use of their digital technology
There’s less intimacy and touching than normal for the relationship
Your partner finds excuses to not spend time with you
When in doubt, reach out and talk to someone – having a non-judgemental sounding board might be exactly what is needed to get clear on what to do next.
After all, everyone deserves to be in a relationship where you are your partner’s number one and only choice.