Is Cuddling Cheating? (4 Truths)

Last updated on June 10, 2022 by April Maccario

Cuddling indicates intimacy, except you're in a casual relationship where you and your partner have agreed not to be exclusive, but then most people will still have an apple of discord with that.

Also, cuddling by its very nature, is an intimate and sensual deed, there might not be any smooching or sex happening, but when emotions are included, that’s just a red flag. So, I might say it's virtually like finding out that your significant other had sexual relations with another person. On the other hand, sex can more or likely be free of emotions but cuddling someone else may not.  

On the whole, every romance is different, and so are the laydown rules. That is why there's a grey area to what you would accept and what other individuals will not accept in their relationship. Be that as it may,  I will be dishing out reasons cuddling could be seen as cheating, so let's get the show on the road.

1. If it involves emotions

How do you perceive cheating? It all adds up to how you understand it, since this is an individual opinion, let me dole out my view on it and see if you'll agree at the end. Also, I will be using a hug to compare and contrast.

Imagine this scenario, your man is at a coworker’s place, then all of a sudden says, “I want a cuddle,” Doesn’t that already sound weird? Asking another person if they’d like to spoon or share the sofa with you? This is very different from sharing a casual hug with friends or colleagues. 

In my own opinion, hugging is something done in a jiffy, it aims to give the other person solace. So, it's more like telling them, "Hey, it's okay," and it doesn't mean anything. You can give anybody a hug, and it'll not in any way suggest that you like them or have feelings for them.

On the other hand, cuddling is slightly in-depth, when you cuddle, it takes a longer time and involves more body contact. So, from my perspective, it discloses more feelings, so even with friends cuddling, in a lot of ways, there’s still something quite off about it. 

Accordingly, when you ask ‘is cuddling cheating?’, also inquire if it entails feelings. If it does, can you imply that you cheated emotionally? Cuddling doesn't just happen without any form of connection. You don’t just ask someone you met to share a couch with you, there has to be a history of some kind, even though it may be platonic.

Also, ask yourself, would you want your partner cuddling someone else other than you? The way a man’s body works, any intimate bodily contact of that kind of proximity could spark things up

2. If it has cross boundaries

Nowadays, people have different interpretations of what cheating is, there's no fine print, no primes, and no absolute terms to explain it. You might be in a camaraderie that your partner would consider sleeping with others as the only criterion to cheat. On the contrary, you might have a different picture in mind, for example, your partner hounding over people they follow on Instagram, excessive social media usage, even more, sexting, or spending an excessive amount of time chatting online.

In that case, is cuddling cheating to your lover? You've to find out the answer from them as you've to be on the same boat. It's because you can't go beyond the pale when you have agreed to what's cheating in your relationship. Nonetheless, you may encounter a thing in your relationship that still makes things a bit complicated. 

No one really thinks about cuddling when setting the terms of cheating, to one partner it may not mean anything, but the other party would consider it as cheating. All in all, communication is the absolute key to a healthy relationship, so you've to be honest with what you want from the start. 

Cuddling people that aren’t your partner may even give them the wrong vibe, even in this society today where the lines have been pushed so far, it’s hard to tell what acceptable anymore. So I ask again, is cuddling cheating? If it crosses the boundaries you have set in your head, it probably is, that kind of intimacy with someone else shouldn’t go unchecked. 

3. If you can’t tell your partner

People involved in affairs don't come out plain to discuss their expectations from their partner,  instead, they assume talking about it may ruin the romance. That leads to all kinds of issues and misunderstandings, the best option is to have a straight from the shoulder talk with them, and most importantly, it has to be open-minded.

So, how can you discuss with your lover about what's cheating without sounding negative? because It matters that you get it right. You can't just come up with “if making out is cheating, then cuddling is cheating” kind of conversations, you have to take it up in a delicate way.

For example, you can watch Season 1 of "The Bold Type" together, the movie is about a romantic affair between Scarlet social media director Kat (Aisha Dee), and an Artist Adena (Nikohl Bosheeri). One of the couples was not okay with the thought of cuddling other people. So, at that point, you can chip in the "is cuddling cheating" comment, and pay attention to how they'll react.

So, call it expectations, boundaries, or cheating, or whatever name you'll give it, you've to chew the fat on this one and share how you feel, but if you're the one involved and you can't share it with them, then you're cheating.

4. If you’re ashamed of the act

The reason for cheating and the feelings of being emotionally betrayed are usually an indication of how dating operates in our world today. That is why we need to reconcile this issue, to make clear why someone will choose to have an emotional need or desire filled outside their relationship.

You can’t just be at someone else’s house and suddenly think to yourself, “I want to be cuddled,” then go ahead to slide in right beside another guy on his couch. The guy in question will even have second thoughts about it, and if there was any sexual tension between both of you before this, he might see this as a green light to get things moving, sexually of course. 

However, if after being in a similar situation, and you don’t feel any guilt, it’s probably because you don’t consider it as something dicey. On the flip side, if on your way home, you kept on thinking about it, and even asked this other guy not to mention it to your man, you already have your answer. 

If you’re ashamed of the act

You wouldn’t feel guilty about something if there was nothing to it, talk less of feeling ashamed or regretful that you cuddled with someone that isn’t you man. The bottom line is this if you’re in an actual exclusive relationship, then cuddling someone else that isn’t family is out of the question.


Is hugging considered as cheating?

Personally speaking, I don't think hugging someone else is cheating, but sometimes it depends on who is being hugged and what feelings are attached to it. Also, if it's like a flash, and it's a greeting hug, then you're buttoned up, but if it's prolonged, with eyes closed, and both parties practically relishing the hug, then that’s questionable. 

Is cuddling and spooning the same thing?

Well, spooning is a more intimate form of cuddling that involves two people lying close to each other. The main difference here is that there’s no defined position for cuddling, but spooning entails a rear to front side cuddle, that’s very close and intimate. Also, it gives birth to this displayed fondness of sexual excitement, and most times, it results in sex. While cuddling is more generic and may not end with sex.

Why are cuddles so nice?

Here is the thing, when you cuddle someone you have feelings for, your body releases some hormones called Oxytocin that relaxes you and it gives that nice feeling.

Also, your desire to cuddle comes from childhood when your family and your loved ones held you close, that feeling sticks around till adulthood.

Is spooning platonic?

Spooning can be platonic or romantic, depending on the level of closeness you've with the other person. In my opinion, it's rare, regardless of the sex of people involved. On the other hand, if it's platonic, it will bring a sense of warmth, trust, and more bonding to friendship. In that case, I won't see it as spooning, since spooning is usually sexually motivated.

Is talking to someone else considered cheating?

The truth of the matter is that it's just you and your partner that can answer this, what I may assume as cheating may differ from what you and your partner agreed on. So, you have to look at it again with your significant order to know where you stand. However, in my opinion, talking with someone is quite normal, it’s flirting that pushes the boundaries. 

In Conclusion

Cheating, naturally, is hard to define as well as love is, it differs extensively and depends on who you ask. It demands two individuals to have the conversation for themselves. However, I hope the points above have answered your doubts about whether cuddling is cheating. 

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April Maccario
I'm a huge nerd when it comes to understanding how relationships between men and women work, and what drives a certain behavior. I spend much of my time getting into the nitty-gritty and try to share my findings on this site with the hope of making life a little easier for women that are struggling in their relationships or love life.

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