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babybear
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I honestly just have a question for anyone to answer:

I was just in a situation where I met someone and found out later on he was actually in a long-term relationship. He works at a local deli that I rarely go to; months ago I found myself there and I just went late last week. He struck up conversation with me. He was absolutely flirting with me - it was very clear - and I responded accordingly (so now I feel guilty for flirting back; I'm just far too empathetic for my own good - was imagining how the girlfriend may have felt if she knew how he was acting towards me). He actually contacted me (the internet is a marvelous tool) saying how wonderful it was to see me the other day, etc.


So here is my question! Why do people with boyfriends/girlfriends flirt with others? Ego? Unhappiness or boredom with their relationship? Or is it just their nature? What is your take? I think a lot of people will see this differently - like, what do you define as flirting? What is crossing the line? Is there even a line to be crossed?

[ 03-16-2010, 12:02 PM: Message edited by: babybear ]

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Heather
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I think it tends to depend a lot on the individual situation.

Some people who make monogamy agreements don't actually really want to be making them, but make them anyway. Some people do get bored or aren't fulfilled in their existing relationship. Some people enjoy the conquest of the thing.

Mind, in some relationships, flirting with others is okay, and not all relationships are monogamous by design, so in some, other dates or partners are also okay.

In terms of those lines, that's something we really have to map out in every relationship, making unique agreements with our partners. Personally, I don't think I'd ever feel a need to map out flirting, as I don't see that/haven't ever experienced that as an issue or problem for me; where I'm going to be negotiating rules when it comes to others is about actual sexual interaction or partnership.

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ske92
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Yeah, it's tough to say, because it's very specific to every relationship. For example, I'm in a long-distance relationship with my boyfriend who lives in France. I didn't realize that I'd have to deal with cultural differences, which I found out about via Facebook photos. One of my boyfriend's best friends is this beautiful, cute girl who, in most pictures, is always hugging/holding hands with/getting close to/sitting with/or kissing (on the cheek) my boyfriend, or visa versa. As an American, most of those things are a bit... well... not done so much with best friends. There are more high-fives, maybe a hug here or there, etc. No kissing. No holding hands. No hugs from behind/cuddling stuff going on.

It took me a while to get used to it. At first, I was really jealous, but I asked other french friends and they all said that it's just how the French are. I actually just met this girl when I visited my boyfriend a week ago, and most suspicion is gone.

So you shouldn't feel guilty at all! I flirt with guys in the US, and he flirts with girls in France. We've discussed it, and we're alright with it - we both understand that we'll be faithful to each other, and a little flirting isn't going to hurt that. It all depends on the relationship!

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hellohellogia
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I guess there should be limits to what kind of "flirting" goes on. I would never want my boyfriend to be inappropriate with other women, such as using sexual vocabulary with them. I would never want to be a person who carries themselves that way. I guess being friendly is a totally different thing, for example telling someone they look pretty is totally different than telling someone they look pretty and asking them for their phone number or hanging out with them. There are so many people you or your partner will run into, and it's inevitable to not be a little flirtatious at times, but there should always be an understanding as to what the limits are. Some people are more open about these things. I would honestly not appreciate my boyfriend being flirtatious with other women or getting too touchy with other women, regardless of whether he is faithful. I find it inappropriate. The understanding is, he doesn't do those kinds of things and I don't either, because that's how we choose to show our respect for one another. Every relationship is different like they mentioned above, because we are all different people.


I don't think you should be guilty because you didn't do anything wrong, but you seem to be a good person for even caring.

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Gia

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