In a marriage, what are the limits for friendship with a member of the opposite sex? Who sets these limits? What is the difference between a friendship and an emotional affair? Is an emotional affair wrong? Does an emotional affair help the marriage by letting a partner vent out all emotional frustration, which otherwise he/she would not have done with his/her spouse? Or does it kill the marriage?
What is an emotional affair? Most of us have friendships. Many of us are very close in some friendships. We share quite a lot in such friendships. But when one develops such a close friendship with one from the opposite sex, it can be termed as an emotional affair. Sharing intimate emotional details with someone of opposite sex is called an emotional affair. This the the common definition. It also includes the clause that you are keeping your partner unaware about the emotional bond you share with someone else. Does it hurt marriage? It hurts marriage if after knowing about the details shared, the spouse feels that mutual trust was violated. If the emotional affair becomes strong, it may so happen that one may begin sharing more emotional details with one's friend than with one's spouse. That hurts the spouse and may also lead to a break-up.
Why do people have emotional affair? It is being debated that emotional affair is purely emotional or it is begun because of physical attraction. Does one need a friend of opposite sex to share emotional details? Why not one of your own sex? And why does one feel uncomfortable with one's spouse about this bond? All pointers go in one direction - an emotional affair may be the way one wants to begin a physical relationship with another outside marriage. Otherwise if one want to have emotional sharing, or to vent out feelings, one can easily consult a psychiatrist and tell all to feel relieved and get advice. Or one can chose a friend of the same sex.