Someone comes up to you and asks, “Is kissing someone else cheating?”
Before you laugh and say that’s a funny question, think carefully. It’s the kind of question that has no right or wrong answer. The best answer is, “It depends - define all three terms - kissing – someone - cheating.” Not that we want to split hairs but yes, we ought to define terms here. After all, we’re talking morals and relationships – two subjects that are delicate and can provoke sentiment and debate.
Kissing Someone Else
Let’s tackle the kissing part first. Did you know that there are many different kinds of kissing? The one you’re most probably familiar with is the French Kiss. We were surfing the Web one day and we found several types of kissing. They range from the most innocent to the most…well…erotic.
Kisses can be:
- neck nibble
The list we found is much longer than that, but for our discussion, defining each of the 20 or so kisses would be a futile effort. An angel kiss for example is a sweet comforting kiss and is done gently on the eyelid or next to the eye. If you planted an angel kiss on your spouse’s best friend, that would not be cheating. Like we said, it’s meant to be a comforting, very light kiss. If your wife’s sister came home crying because she lost the cheerleading contest and you go over and give her an angel kiss, then no one can say you’re cheating on your wife.
The same can be said of the forehead kiss. Forehead kisses are friendly, courteous, and the type of kiss that says “we’re just friends” or “you’re cool, kiddo.” That kiss can hardly qualify as cheating on your spouse.
As for the other kisses like the freeze, hickey, neck and underwater kisses, these could earn you a punch on the nose – especially if it’s the wife of your boss. The freeze kiss is defined as a kiss that occurs between two people when they exchange ice cubes and they do so with their tongues. A neck kiss can produce a tingling sensation on the one receiving it – especially a woman – so be careful that you don’t do it openly. An underwater kiss is even worse. Since you’re both down under, no one’s going to be able to judge the intensity of the kiss, even when you’re both wearing masks.
Now you see why we say that it depends on the type of kissing you give another person. Each type of kiss has its own dynamics and interpretation. You’re definitely cheating on your spouse if you give a member of the opposite sex a neck, freeze, underwater, hickey, neck nibble and French kiss.
Who’s that person you just kissed?
Other than your spouse or girlfriend, you’re allowed to kiss other people provided you kiss them on the cheek, forehead or hand. There’s a lot of cheek kissing among colleagues celebrating a birthday, pregnancy or promotion, and there’s a lot of hand kissing that goes in diplomatic circles. So if you kissed someone at an office party and the location of the kiss is an “innocent” one (cheek, hand, forehead), then we can say that kissing someone else is not cheating.
We’ll give more examples of “someone”: your mother-in-law, your cousin, your kid sister, your aunt, your aunt’s friend, your mother’s manicurist or your office mate. Kissing them doesn’t qualify as cheating, especially if you just give them a perfunctory kiss, one done out of courtesy or affection.
If you gave your wife’s sister a long French kiss in a dark corridor in the house, then be prepared to be evicted from your own house. That kind of behavior is just not done by decent human beings, okay?
Cheating? We were only kissing!
Sure, you were only kissing, but again we go back to the question: what type of kiss was it and who did you kiss?
In fact, if we were to be strict about it, you don’t have to be kissing another person to be considered cheating. A wise old man once said that just thinking of kissing or making love to a person other than your spouse is already cheating.
You may not be engaged in sexual intimacy, but if you regularly fantasize about being in bed with someone other than your spouse, then you’re a cheat. Period.
A young woman once confided in us that she was at an office party and got drunk. She ended up in the conference room exchanging kisses with a colleague. She said it only happened once and even if she sees him everyday in the office, they both act as though it never happened. Did she cheat on her husband?
Yes, she did. No two ways about it. It doesn’t matter that it happened only once and they were only kissing or that she was drunk. The fact is, she – being a married woman - shouldn’t have allowed herself to get uncontrollably drunk. We would not be surprised if her husband started to distrust her. If it happened once, it can happen again. Damage done.
If you’re kissing someone else and don’t want to be accused of cheating, live by these guidelines:
- Give an innocent kiss – on the forehead, cheek or head. Stay away from the eyes, nose and especially the neck and mouth.
- Plant the kiss and back off quickly. Do not stay physically close for more than three seconds. Kiss and then retreat!
- Avoid whispering. If you have to say anything to the person you’re kissing, do so at your normal tone of voice and when everybody around – including your spouse – can hear every word you’re saying.
- Kiss in full view of everyone. To dock into the attic or into the empty study room to plant a kiss is not appropriate. Kissing in public is kosher. Kissing in private can mean there’s more than meets the lips!
- Kiss only when it’s the practice. In some cultures, kissing other people is frowned upon or else kissing is done only on one cheek. In other cultures, it’s normal to kiss three times. First time on the right cheek, second time on the left and the third time on the right cheek again. Go with the flow. If kissing isn’t de rigueur in the group you’re in, don’t start blowing kisses away.
- If you have to kiss, just kiss. No need to put your arms around the person’s neck or waist, and no need to lean, tease or touch him/her.
- To keep your spouse from being suspicious, make perfunctory kisses. This means kissing someone out of duty. Make it appear that you’re just kissing because it’s the practice. Don’t start giving any tender loving gazes or initiating touch with the person you’re kissing. Get it over with and keep your distance.