'Micro-cheating' is the new dating trend you need to know about

Kristine Tarbert
Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
Micro-cheating is something you may not have heard of. Photo: Getty

As if the world of dating wasn’t complicated enough, it’s now been revealed your partner could be cheating on you by doing something some might consider relatively harmless.

The concept of cheating is pretty straight forward; when someone in a relationship strays away from home. Yet now, experts at eHarmony and telling us to look out for a partner ‘micro-cheating’ on you too.

The dating website defines 'micro-cheating' as "a term which encompasses smaller, albeit questionable acts" from a partner.

Think liking the social media posts of someone else you're attracted to, or sliding into their DMs, something tech-savvy millennials seem to feel most strongly about.

Micro-cheating includes small acts like liking the posts of someone you're attracted to. Photo: Getty

“Advances in technology and the multitude of available platforms means that people often feel there is endless choice. This choice can sometimes lead people to make toxic decisions,” eHarmony dating expert Rachael Lloyd revealed.

“It might start with a bit of flirting online, and build towards full-blown emotional affairs in the digital environment. The fallout from these situations can be as devastating as a physical affair.”

She added that a couple of Instagram likes here and there might not seem so bad but it’s the intent behind them you need to consider.

Rachael also suggests setting clear boundaries as soon as possible in a new relationship, so you partner isn’t surprised when you challenge them on being too friendly with others online.

“The modern dating world can be a minefield, but clear communication can really help,” she added.

Why do people cheat?

According to relationship expert Michelle Rose, there are a number of reasons why men and women choose to cheat, with a big one being that they try to destroy what they don’t feel worthy of having in the first place.

“If they’ve got a belief that they’re not really worthy, that they’re not really enough, then they will destroy it because we’ll always live up to our beliefs and our identity,” she told Yahoo Lifestyle previously.

“The closer they get towards love, the more likely they are to do something crazy and destroy it, when they actually don’t believe they have it in the first place. Even though externally they’ve got it, they will destroy it.”

Michelle believes that love is one of the biggest fears of the human race, because it is a reflection of who we really are.

“The energy of love is so unfamiliar for a lot of people that when they start to go deep they’ll stuff it up , they’ll do something. Because they can only handle the superficial,” she said.

Woman touching the wedding ring on her finger nervously while having coffee and waiting in cafe

How to spot a cheater

Relationship expert Louanne Ward claims people can be addicted to love and sex and have no idea that their actions are leaving a trail of destruction and broken hearts behind them.

She added people are often genuinely shocked and heartbroken to discover their spouse has been unfaithful yet, in many cases, there were a number of key signs they simply failed to see.

She recommends looking out for signs of ‘change in behaviour’, such as your partner ‘staying back at work late more often than before, having a renewed interest in their appearance, unexplained and secretive social media activity or any other new and different activity could and should have your radar alerted’.

“Most people will have an inner sense that things are not quite the same and may question their partner about their suspicions,” she said.

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