It's one thing to be friendly/affable with others but it's another to directly flirt. I really have no interest in flirting with other men when I am attached and fully interested in my partner.
For me, to flirt means that I have an interest in a man on some level romantically and it's act of showing varying degrees of sexual/physical/romantic interest in him, even if it isn't acted on. This is different than just simply
finding & seeing others as physically attractive.
In my view, itís a very specific and active
Some things that would indicate flirting to me are:
- Touching someone sexually
- Hugging or getting into playful positions/gestures that are romantic and sexual
- Telling sexual jokes that are directed AT the person (not generalized sexual jokes that can be told in front of anyone and that are objective)
- Commenting on his/her body parts sexually
- Teasing in a seductive and sexual manner that is personalized
- Talking generously and repeatedly about how enticing your sexual skills and body parts are
I see these behaviors as very inappropriate while in a serious committed relationship. They might not lead to cheating, but it's a cheap way to skirt the line without being outright.
Most people will not admit this and they'll deny...and that denial is the threatening element because if you can deny now and your relationship is tested or challenged some way in the future, it won't be strong enough to keep those boundaries in tow since you can easily skate the line at this point. So in more cases than less, flirtation in the modes above often lead to cheating and break up.
Some people may flirt whether they are single or attached, they've always had a more generalized flirtatious nature, and it's a way to get attention and feel good about themselves. As a result, they don't discontinue this behavior or see this as inappropriate once partnered in a committed relationship.
Perhaps they need to rethink that...once their status changes to attached. Some people are unaware of sending out single cues once they are no longer single. You shouldn't behave the same way.
I think some will say that certain obvious flirtatious actions are being "friendly" but my thinking is that this is a way to create their own definition of what flirting is, therefore making it an acceptable and justified thing to do while attached/married.
I also think that the previous post written above is key and a good test. If this is not behavior you can openly display in front of your partner, then that says something. It means that you are flirting, this flirting goes a bit deeper and you are in denial about its nature and implications.
But to each their own. Every couple defines their relationship differently. If both people agree and are aware of the other person's actions, what it means, and the flirting is accepted, then I don't have any issues with that because their relationship functions differently. Just make sure it's mutually known.
I personally consider it disrespect, a show of emotional infidelity and lack of integrity.