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Wow, what a stupid question, right? You probably think I’m crazy for even writing this article. But think about it. Think back to any time you flirted with a classmate, a guy bought you a drink at the bar, or someone hit you up on Tinder. (Don’t lie, most of us have indeed tried Tinder for one reason or another). Now, remember that humans crave human interaction, and love, and compassion. Remember that we make mistakes and we don’t intend to hurt others, but it’s always out there, waiting to happen. We’re in college, we’re going to do stupid things we regret later. We’re going to screw up.

The topic in question came about from an incident involving two drunk friends harmlessly flirting with one another. They were both drunk, and they both had some sort of feelings in the past towards one another, but one of the two has a significant other. They said they would just flirt, and nothing would happen.

Now, where is that line? Where when you think about it, did they go wrong? They were nice to each other. They complimented each other. They’ve been friends since they started college. And the significant other wasn’t around.

The line was crossed. The friends in question have a past. They cheated once before with a kiss. This time they groped one another in public, and one kissed the other on the cheek several times. And when sober, they swore they’d never do it again.

What constitutes as cheating to many people is a kiss or having sex. It’s intentional. It’s thought about by the one performing the act. To others, simply flirting is an act of cheating. So what does constitute as cheating? It doesn’t matter. The act in itself is vile and unfair to a loving partner. But mistakes do happen. And people mess up. And people can be hurt. It’s childish to use another person to make yourself feel better when you’re hurting another in the process. 

Cheating in itself is inexcusable to many, including myself. There should be no reason to hurt a person you love. If you don’t love them, then there’s no reason to stay with them. Many people are cowardly when it comes to ending a relationship, and I can say from personal experience that cheating hurts more than ending a relationship and entering one with someone else immediately after. If you claim to love or care about your significant other, then do the right thing. If the line for you is fuzzy, then you’re already crossing it. You’re already contemplating cheating. And even after cheating you go right back to your relationship like nothing happened, then you don’t love them. You don’t care about them. True love and caring about someone means you’re faithful. 

So what constitutes as cheating? That’s up to you. But remember, that’s also up to your partner. What could seem harmless may cause more damage than anyone ever considered.

Nickey Siegerman is an aspiring author from West Chester, PA. In addition to getting her Bachelor's from Kutztown for Professional Writing, she is in 3 writing clubs on campus, she talks about her dogs constantly and sings more than anyone should.
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