Ask the Doctor: Email & Phone Advice
Weekly Marriage Blog. Subscribe Today!
Dr. Clarke on Focus on the Family. Click here to listen.
Weekly Marriage Blog

Types of Adultery

By Dr. David Clarke, Ph.D

The Big Idea

Adultery comes in many forms.

The Teaching

Many persons believe that the only activity that counts as adultery is having sex with a member of the opposite sex.  These persons are wrong.  Sex with anyone other than your spouse is certainly adultery, but there are other types of adultery.  All the types I will describe in these next few blogs count as full-blown adultery.  

Emotional Adultery.  Any relationship, in person or long distance, that is clearly beyond a business or friendship level is adultery.  Developing an emotional attachment to someone not your spouse is serious sin.  Sharing personal details about your life, your attraction to this person, your unhappiness with your spouse. . . this is adultery.  It will lead, in time, to more and more intimate talk and sexual conversations.  This type of adultery could be in person or long distance.  

Emotional adultery could be with a co-worker, neighbor, friend, family member, or someone you knew years ago.  Phone calls, texts, emails, Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media can be used to develop such a relationship.  

Do not connect with persons you used to date.  Do not connect with persons of the opposite sex you used to be attracted to. Feel free to connect with persons you used to know who are your own sex.  

I have heard this from many spouses in my therapy office in Tampa: "Doc, I got in touch with Suzy from High School through Facebook.  I always had a crush on her and regretted not finding out if we could have married. I think she is my soulmate." 

My response is something like this: "You need to drop Suzy from High School like a hot rock.  You are committing adultery with her.  Your soulmate is sitting next to you on my couch-your wife.  You know how I know she is your soulmate?  Because you married her. Stop acting like an idiot.  Dump Suzy the skank today, help your wife heal from your adultery, and let's build a new marriage."

If you are "connecting" emotionally with someone other than your spouse, stop it immediately and tell your spouse what you have done.  If you know someone who is involved in emotional adultery, have the guts to tell them to stop it before it completely destroys their life and marriage and family and harms everyone that is close to them.

More types of adultery next week. 

Ask the Doctor: Email & Phone Advice
Weekly Marriage Blog. Subscribe Today!
Dr. Clarke on Focus on the Family. Click here to listen.
© 2003 - 2019 David E. Clarke, Ph.D. - All Rights Reserved.