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Flirting in a relationship - yes or no?


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I've talked to my boyfriend about this. You'd have to define flirting. There is casual flirting and serious flirting. We think it’s OK to flirt so long as it is totally innocent. The minute there is true attraction, or it goes too far, or you are messing with someone's head, you've crossed the line and are in dangerous territory. If you don't know what that line is, or you can't help yourself, then no, flirting is not OK for you. (by the way, I'm not saying you as in YOU, I'm saying you as in someone).

 

Just because we are in a serious relationship doesn't mean it's time to put on the burka. If you can trust each other. Trust each others intentions, actions, then it is OK.

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^^^agree. If there's nothing naughty to it we would call it chatting not flirting. I'd like it if some single guy tried to flirt with me, it would be an ego boost but if he was taken I'd think he isn't crazy about his girlfriend.

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I believe there is no such thing as "harmless flirting". The whole idea behind flirting is to show some sort of interest in a person as a prospective partner of some sort. If you are in a relationship the person you should be flirting with is your SO. Nothing says you can't flirt with your partner and I would personally be very hurt if I discovered that my partner was flirting with someone else. Those types of actions should be reserved for the person you are dating or what not.

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Maybe there's some different understanding among people on the definition? This is exactly how I feel about the word 'flirting' from Wiki

 

Flirting is a common form of link removed whereby one person obliquely indicates a link removed or link removed interest towards another. It can consist of link removed, link removed, or brief physical contact.

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It's true that flirting can express sexual attraction. I don't expect my partner to only be sexually attracted to me.

 

Plus, I think a lot of people that flirt for fun do it because it makes them feel more sexually attractive, not because they are expressing sexual attraction to someone else. I'm not going to get upset over something that gives my partner an ego-boost.

Happy partner = happier relationship

 

I also tell him about people that I have crushes on and he doesn't mind.

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No, I don't thinks it's ok. There is no reason what so ever to flirt if you are already in a relationship. As people have already said in this thread, flirting is an indication of sexual and romantic intrest. If I had a girl and I found out she flirted with other guys I would break up with her because that indicates she is romanticly and sexually intrested in the guy she was flirting with. It is disrespectful to flirt with other guys if you are already in a relationship and I think it shows that you don't really love the man your already with.

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Flirting isn't just talking, chatting, giving attention to or being friendly with others, all of which are perfectly appropriate and should be encouraged to make a person whole in a relationship.

 

How can someone be committed in their relationship and yet be flirting [obliquely indicates a romantic or sexual interest towards another....] with others? Where is the comittment? I see only one appropriate response when you're in a committed relationship and someone flirts with you - to politely but very clearly inform them that you're in a relationship leaving no chance for them to mistakenly get the idea that their romantic/sexual advances are being reciprocated.

 

People who flirt and/or let others flirt with them claim their behavior is harmless and that if their partner is bothered by this, they are jealous or that their partner should be confident enough to accept this behavior as long as they're going home with them. To me, these justifications are transparently narcissistic, insulting, abusive and manipulative.

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I think the Wiki definition helps quite a bit, but it's still a bit of gray line when it becomes inappropriate. It's not only words, but it's intention, inflection, and so on. Commenting on someone's appearance you're friendly with should be okay. Telling your friend they look "hot" that day should even be okay. But if you tell them they look "hawt" and your eyes are staring a hole in them and your tongue is hanging out...know what I mean?

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It's true that flirting can express sexual attraction. I don't expect my partner to only be sexually attracted to me.

 

It's inevitable that you'll be attracted to someone else at some point during a relationship, but it's another thing entirely to act on those feelings by flirting thereby communicating your interest to them. What are you hoping to achieve by informing the object of your romantic/sexual desires of your feelings towards them? What kind of a response are you expecting? This person may reciprocate and you get together - no good for your current relationship. Or, they may reciprocate and then you back down, making the person feel disappointed, confused, and misled.

 

Plus, I think a lot of people that flirt for fun do it because it makes them feel more sexually attractive, not because they are expressing sexual attraction to someone else. I'm not going to get upset over something that gives my partner an ego-boost.

Happy partner = happier relationship

 

What about the feelings of the person you're flirting with to get that ego boost? If I met two girls at a party, started a conversation with them and one of them was flirting with me, I'd take it as they were interested in me. Later on she'd put the brakes on and I'd wonder what I did or said wrong. What if the other girl had been single and her and I were soulmates but didn't end up getting together because i was lured away by someone who misled my for their own purposes for the evening. What a waste of a night that would be when I could have spent time with someone who's interest may have been sincere.

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I don't mind if my boyfriend notices other girls as attractive, I don't mind if he watches porn, but I would mind if he flirted with other girls. Admiring from afar is a harmless thing that I do myself, but to flirt with that person feels like you've crossed a line and now it's a bit more intimate. It just makes me feel uncomfortable as it's a non-platonic interaction and to me that's too far.

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What about the feelings of the person you're flirting with to get that ego boost? If I met two girls at a party, started a conversation with them and one of them was flirting with me, I'd take it as they were interested in me. Later on she'd put the brakes on and I'd wonder what I did or said wrong. What if the other girl had been single and her and I were soulmates but didn't end up getting together because i was lured away by someone who misled my for their own purposes for the evening. What a waste of a night that would be when I could have spent time with someone who's interest may have been sincere.

 

That's life in the big city, my friend. People are never going to act in a manner that suits your needs. You've just gotta roll with it or feel sorry for yourself. Your choice.

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That's life in the big city, my friend. People are never going to act in a manner that suits your needs. You've just gotta roll with it or feel sorry for yourself. Your choice.

 

As one person in a city of 3 million people I can say that I often act in a manner to suit others needs, in fact I try to evaluate all of my behavior, choices, actions, etc. from the perspective of 'how would I feel if I were treated this way?' I've never mislead someone to think I'm interested in them sexually/romantically for the purpose of feeling good about myself. I only flirt if I'm sincerely interested. It serves no useful purpose to get angry or feel sorry for yourself when you encounter someone with different values than your own, so yeah, roll with it, but don't lower your standards, compromise your values to accommodate others, or think that just because the majority of people do something that means it's OK.

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thanks for all the input everyone! I think I'm most in line with what pl3asehelp has been saying. There is a difference, to me, between being a nice, friendly person, and displaying sexual interest in someone else. I think if you are flirting with no intentions of pursuing something beyond that, what is the point?

 

When in a relationship, I just don't feel the urge to flirt, even after several years. I don't want someone to get the wrong idea and then I have to go through the mess of explaining everything. "Oh well, I was ACTUALLY just flirting so I could feel better about myself" WHAT!? of course I don't expect my partner to be attracted to me and only me for the rest of eternity, but that doesn't mean I'm ok with him going out and advertising sexual interest, even if it is supposedly 'innocent'.

 

I think there is a trade-off. If you are in a committed relationship, you get to have the love and attention and intimacy of one person, but you let go of single type behavior, which includes flirting (ie. displaying romantic or sexual interest in another)

 

on the other hand, I've seen lots of couples who flirt with others, and they're still together. From my own opinion, when I see them flirting with other people, it cheapens their relationship and have less respect for them, but maybe they are truly happy and just fine, to each their own I guess.

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