- Gender and Relationships
Flirting While Married
I want to start by saying that I've been married for 4 and a half years. On the spectrum of things, that isn't very long. I also wouldn't consider myself to be drop dead gorgeous but I do on occasion still get flirted with by strangers. If you have ever had someone just randomly come up to you and express interest or start showering you with compliments then you know exactly how great it feels.
My husband is a flirt, I knew this before we even started dating and I don't expect it to change. He doesn't invite these women out to meals or take it any further than an exchange in a little ego fluffing, I call it, so I don't mind. As people we have been conditioned to turn down compliments in order no to look vain. Pretend someone says this to you,"You look really nice today."
Then you in return said this, "Oh no, you must be joking. I didn't even bother to brush my hair, I just threw it up in a hair tie." What you just told that person really was, "No you're wrong. Clearly you can't tell when my hair is a mess, I can't believe you think I look nice this way." You think you are being modest but really you are actually shutting someone down. You need to accept the compliment with a sincere "thank you." and then shut your mouth, seriously shut it.
In a lot of relationships this will happen until one or the other, in some cases both, just stop complimenting the other. This leads to a lack of ego fluffing. Even if we want to seem modest, no one really gets tired of being told how pretty, hot or handsome they are. For this reason, I believe that flirting outside of your marriage is a healthy thing. Obviously, touching is a no-no and you don't extend the flirting further than what it takes to go through a line to pay for your things, for example. But it is nice to be noticed by someone when you go out.
I also have what I call 'safe flirting' which can be used when involving people you trust and are respectful of your situation. I have friends, who shall go unnamed, that I flirt with. They know I am married, happily so, and most of them are in relationships as well. They say things like, "I had the biggest crush on you back in school, I was just afraid to ask you out."
To which I then replied, "You should have, I thought you were so cute. I would have said yes."
He said, "Good to know now lol. Too bad a redo is impossible. You still look great, even after the baby."
I replied, "Yes, we'll never know what might have happened. But I have my husband and you have Jane Doe so It all worked out for the best." Then I added a playful tone in at the end, "You seem to have gotten better looking, which I wouldn't have thought possible. Jane Doe is one lucky lady."
It is as simple as that, we both understand that we are in committed relationships, and yet our egos also both benefited from the conversation. It can be tricky, and when you think that a conversation is becoming too suggestive try some how tying your partner or theirs into the subject. The people that I 'safe flirt' with are people I've known for years, I know that each of them used to have a thing for me when we were younger but the major key is never make it too serious, and always bring up the other's partner once and a while to keep the mood of the conversation neutral.
This isn't about rekindling old flames with ex boyfriends. I still talk to a couple of my Ex's but I don't safe flirt with them. The guys that I safe flirt with are all 'might have been' situations. Friends that could have been more if they or I had asked one another out. I repeat, do NOT do this with an EX. Even if you two are best friends and get along great, it is very possible to rekindle feelings and that just leads to problems.
Do not put a lot of thought into these friendships. What I mean by that is like with me, most of my friends are guys. I just enjoy them more than the lady friends I've ever had. Friendships with guys are easier, less dramatic and they don't try to hurt you just because they are bored. (Well some might, I am talking in general though) My guy friends would all go to bat for me to keep me safe, just as quickly as I would for them. Are some of my guy friends good looking? Actually, all of them are very attractive men. I am not blind so there is no point in trying to deny that, but I don't analyze the friendship. Women tend to over think things, myself included, and I find that it is important if you have a friend of the male gender and are a woman...in order to keep from making your life awkward and making mistakes. Simply don't over think it.
Seriously, don't. Kind of make them in your mind, like your brother, without making it a creepy thing when they fluff your ego. Also, don't over sell it. If a guy says to you, "I can't believe who well you stayed in shape," don't go and then show him how you can put your leg behind your head. Remember that you are taken, they might be taken, if not then ... it doesn't matter you are still taken.
My husband worked as a server and he'd come home every night with his apron stuffed full of napkins covered with flirty, suggestive and often times very blunt things written on them. One woman handed my husband a room key to her hotel room and told him to come after his shift was up. The hotel and the restaurant where he worked shared a parking lot, so it would have been easy for him to take her up on it. But instead he came home, to me and our son, glowing with the thrills of all the admiration and attention of young women. I kept all of the notes and napkins for him to make a scrapbook for him. I know it sounds odd, but I enjoyed reading them. You should feel pride when someone flirts with your spouse, other people still desire them but baby, they are all yours. He felt newly sexy when he'd come home with his pockets full of these prizes and that would always work to my benefit as well. My husband even mentioned to me that women are bolder in their flirting with him after noticing his wedding ring. I actually found this rather interesting, I found out that women are drawn to men who can keep a commitment and nothing says that better than a wedding ring. Of course this is always where I found it a little confusing, because a truly committed man would never cheat on his wife. If he did cheat on his wife with this other woman, would she really expect him to honor any commitment she might get from him after breaking the one to his wife?
You will find people who want to cross that line from safe flirting into the danger zone, you can't beat around the bush or be subtle with them. They need to know you're situation and how far you are willing to go, which shouldn't be further than a few flattering lines. As I mentioned before, it is something you have to sort of touch and feel as you go, hypothetically speaking (no touching). Like with my 'safe flirting' friends, it has been a process we have perfected over years. It can be much easier to try this flirting thing out on someone who you just randomly meet at a cafe or store. I don't suggest bars or lounges where alcohol is involved, it makes things harder to control. A park, book store, cafe, food court, play ground...neutral places are best.
Go ahead and give it a try just follow these rules
1. Be clear at some point that your are in a relationship
2. Don't extend the flirtation over anything more than like twenty minutes. Even when you have a safe flirting friend, its not long conversations. It is almost like a quick little pick me up or for example, like a hit from a drug. You don't draw it out.
3. Don't get perverted, be playful but don't make things dirty.
4. Don't over think it, whether you have a safe flirting buddy or not. It complicates things and can ruin relationships.
5. When you're spouse gets flirted with, be happy for them. They still got it, and you get to have them all to yourself.
6. No touching, absolutely none.
7. Always integrate your spouse into the conversation in one way or another at least twice so it's clear to the other person that you are taken. This would NOT be the time to complain about them.
8. Bars and anywhere that involves alcohol is not a place to try this out. You can easily lose control of the situation.
9. Remember that flirting is just as much for them as it is for you.
10. try to enjoy the attention, if someone comes up to you and starts flirting...clearly you've earned it so enjoy it.
11. Do NOT try this with your EX!! EVER!!!
I used to feel guilty about getting flirted with after it would happen, especially when I flirted back. But there is such a thing as harmless flirting and this is it. You can accomplish an ego fluff without every betraying the trust and love of your spouse. My husband for example, is a charmer. He can charm women, men ... he can charm ice if he put his mind to it. It's just how he is and really I wouldn't have him any other way. He enjoys flirting and many enjoy flirting with him, he's tall dark and handsome the three big ooo la la la's. He follows the rules of flirting and I follow the rules of flirting we both get our confidence boosts and egos fluffed and return to one another rejuvenated. We don't have to sleep with other people, we don't have to be outrageous in bed (though new things are always fun). Someone else thought we looked good and that sort of adds fuel to the fire in our relationship.
I truly hope that this has been helpful to you and that you enjoyed my story as well as my advice. It might have you skeptical about it but that is alright, it just means that you are loyal. That is something to be very proud of, my husband and I are very loyal to one another too. The moment that changes you'll see it on the news haha just kidding. All the same, it could be something fun to try. It's safe and the both of you can do it, maybe not 'together' or you might send off a swingers vibe haha. We've accidentally done that once...odd situation to be in, I wont lie. We didn't take them up on that offer but we still came away from it feeling flattered and that is the point.
If you feel good about yourself you will feel good about your relationship.