Her Flirting is Almost Like Sex
Q: If a married woman flirts with other men, and in doing so, borders on having sex with them, how can a spouse ever trust her again? Should she cease and desist such conduct? — Tony, 77
Dr. Susan: There's a sort of gentle verbal flirting or teasing that's meant to be fun, although it can still upset the third party who isn't being flirted with. And then there's serious flirting that is intended to hurt. I suspect your wife is crossing boundaries with her flirting. She's either totally clueless about the effect she's having on you, or she's trying to get a rise out of you for some reason. I'd want to know if the rest of your relationship is okay. To answer your question, of course a married woman shouldn't flirt in the outrageous way you describe. While some women never go beyond the flirting stage, it's still cruel to play with a partner's feelings.
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.