Cheating III: Sex in Head, Mental Infidelity

Can we cheat with our thoughts?

In thought, should commitments be honored, boundaries observed? Or, are we released from all rules and obligations? Thoughts about others may be unavoidable: should we at least try to be faithful in our thinking?

When people masturbate, I wonder how many fantasize about others instead of their spouse or partner. Who do you have on your mind during alone time? Does anyone only thinks about their significant other? What if you include your partner in a fantasy, but she’s being eaten out by a friend named Rosa, who’s calling you “Daddy” as you fuck her from behind and sing the song El Paso, by Marty Robbins, using her braids as reins. For example.

Do you think it is cheating to think about others? What if the other person you fantasize about is someone your partner knows – friend, sister… or, maybe once or twice her mother, Jackie, who maybe has huge tits and dresses like a stripper? If everyone is fair game in our fantasies, is it okay to occasionally imagine during sex  that our partner is someone else? Exactly – perhaps the notion that we can cheat with our mind isn’t so ridiculous

Our thoughts need some room to wander, but should some boundaries be expected? Let’s look for boundaries in a few real life examples.

In my recently published book Dare, my friend Sean makes his fiancée Lisa tell us one of her fantasies. Sean had been trying to convince her to tell him one of her most secret and naughty fantasies; she finally gave in and wrote one down for him as a birthday gift.

(Moral of that story: be sure you’re prepared for what you pry open – there’s usually reasons why people keep something secret, especially if it has to do with sex.)

Anyway, the fantasy was bad – and worse, the leading man in Lisa’s fantasy was some other man. (Not just dirty bad, but – you might come just reading it bad – which might be good.) The man of her fantasy was just imaginary, but he wasn’t Sean – bore no resemblance even.

It would be a stretch to call it cheating – sex with an imaginary person during a scenario merely imagined. It wasn’t the particulars of the story that bothered Sean. The fighting came after he learned how much use it was getting: Sean had wanted a real fantasy that Lisa had, but this one  was being had often – more often than not it was her go-to for masturbating.

Can it be a matter of frequency? Is it assumed that we all fantasize now and then, but if we’re re-imagining a fantasy with another, routinely, are we betraying our partner? Do we do our partner wrong, neglect them in mind, if we’re distracted by thoughts of another? Is Lisa cheating on Sean – having an affair of sorts with this fantasy she revisits?

The following incident took place during my little sister’s wedding reception. I had known many of the guests most my life – my parents have a large circle of longtime friends – and I grew up knowing their kids. One of these kids, a guy we’ll call “Chad,” was at the wedding along with his parents and his new wife.

I was at Chad and his wife Carrie’s wedding about six months before. I had met Carrie a few times before their wedding, probably at some other friend’s wedding, but had never hung out with her and Chad. But on the night of my sister’s wedding, I spent most my time talking to them. Later in the evening Carrie confronted me. I must have been returning from the bathroom or a walk, because she caught me alone: nobody close enough to hear us talking.

Whatever her exact words – she communicated that not only did she wish she could jump my bones – she wished it would have been me she married. This was not drunken flattery or comments said in jest: God knows why she didn’t keep it to herself, but she was dead serious.

So, aside from a dance or two, Carrie had no contact with me physically. Her hands weren’t on me but her mind was – according to her she was “having thoughts about me all night that she shouldn’t be having” – so quickly forgetting the husband she just married. Yes, they was only thoughts, but did her thoughts become infidelities when she told them to me? Or, perhaps they’d have been even if she had kept them to herself?

Could it be that whatever goes on in our own mind, is only free of judgement so far as it stays there?

I think Carrie betrayed her husband Chad. I guess it wasn’t “cheating,” but I’d say she was unfaithful.

(Incidentally, what my sister’s husband’s cousin did in my pants. after sneaking away from her fiance… well, sure as hell that was cheating. But that’s a whole other story.)

I look forward to reading your comments about this topic. Do you think there are any circumstances where mere thought can be cheating? Do you think about your partner or others when you pleasure yourself? Does it make a difference how often we think about others, or whether we think about a real person or someone imaginary? Is it worse if one fantasizes about their partner’s best friend or sister? Do we owe more accountability to thoughts we let someone know about?

Cheating Series:

Cheating: Issues, Questions & Implications of shifting attitudes towards marital infidelity.
Cheating Part II: How much flirtation is healthy and when does it become infidelity?
Cheating III: Sex in Head, Mental Infidelity
Cheating IV: Anatomy of Infidelity
Cheating Part V: Loopholes, Free Zones and Grey Areas.
Cheating VII: Time Warp Infidelity – Sex After or Before the Relationship?
Cheating 7: When You Stumble Upon Much Better Sex Outside Your Relationship
Cheating 8: Is it Really Sex or affection we Want or is Cheating a Settlement?
Cheating 9: Considering Special Features in Defense of Sexual Infidelity
Cheating 10: Looking for a bit of fun before spilling the beans
Cheating XI: How Not to Sleep With Married People

If you enjoy reading sexually arousing stories that are also thought provoking, you’ll love reading Dare, the first publication of the Sinner Saint Diary series. Click here for book info previews on Amazon.


23 thoughts on “Cheating III: Sex in Head, Mental Infidelity

  1. Pingback: Cheating Part II: How much flirtation is healthy and when does it become infidelity? | The Sinner Saint Diary
  2. Interesting… our intentions are thought-based, so it would follow that “head cheating” is infidelity. However I think there is a difference between fantasy and intention (wishing, wanting, planning, expecting to do something)… I may have fantasies that I prefer to remain that way – only acted out in my mind, not in the flesh (for now??). And I think the fact is that in relationships there are many ways to be unfaithful – most are not physical – and the emotional/ mental/ spiritual infidelity may cause more harm. Or more good. Perhaps the key to truly being faithful to someone is acknowledging that we likely all have needs that cannot be met merely by one person (is that even fair to expect or assume?) and having others in our lives to meet these mostly no-physical needs is best-case practice for ourselves and our partner.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Great points – as you bring to light, a definition of terms seems is perhaps where a discussion on this topic should start. Inspired by this comment, I’m going to push the next post in the series back and insert a definitions of terms post next.

      My off the cuff take, is that infidelity involves the element of sexual interaction with another outside the relationship, while cheating is more defined by an element of deception or a lock of consent from significant other?

      Thank you for reading and contributing.


  3. Yesss!! I definitely believe it’s unfair to expect that one person can and will meet all of our needs. We all enjoy having different types of friends who aren’t all the same – these friends fulfil various needs differently. The idea of a “monogamish” relationship is definitely something I’m keen to hear others’ thoughts on.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I agree that you’re setting yourself up for failure if you think that you’ll never think of another in a sexual manner. However, there are boundaries, times when thoughts may feel like infidelity. It’s a fuzzy line and perhaps differs for everyone. For me it is when my thoughts start to take away from my relationship with my partner; for instance if I were to fantasize about another while I was having sex with my husband (or imagine that I was with someone else) that would feel like cheating to me, but I wouldn’t think that would apply to everyone. It’s a personal boundary that I’ve created partially because I’m in an open relationship – when I’m with my husband I want to be completely with him. But when I’m on my own, my thoughts are my own.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You make some great points.

      While one has sex with their spouse – the presumption is that their spouse is having sex with them. So, if in the spouses mind they’re imagining someone else, then there’s not only another person involved, but also a deception as well. Perhaps having an element of deception is a defining characteristic of “Cheating?”

      What if someone fantasizes about someone else every single time they are not having sex with their spouse? Would that in any way be “taking away from their relationship with spouse?” (ie cheating by your definition?) I suppose if someone masturbates enough – it might reduce frequency of sex with spouse?

      Thank you very much for contributing your thought and reading SSD.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: On TheMaster – Magenta & Me
  6. Pingback: Cheating Part V: Loopholes, Free Zones and Grey Areas. | The Sinner Saint Diary
  7. Pingback: Cheating 7: When You Stumble Upon Much Better Sex Outside Your Relationship | The Sinner Saint Diary
  8. Pingback: Cheating VII: Time Warp Infidelity – Sex After or Before the Relationship? | The Sinner Saint Diary
  9. Pingback: Cheating IV: Anatomy of Infidelity | The Sinner Saint Diary
  10. Pingback: Cheating 8: Is it Really Sex or affection we Want or is Cheating a Settlement? | The Sinner Saint Diary
  11. Pingback: Cheating 9: Considering Special Features in Defense of Sexual Infidelity | The Sinner Saint Diary
  12. Well I guess I speak to cheaters every day! But I do think one person can’t serve another’s needs completely. And I also think people have sets of fluctuating needs that can only be met for so long before they move on to find a new person who meets most of them at that time

    Liked by 1 person

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