Almost every day, people encounter with different types of flirting. It can be defined as “a subtle way of pulling, attracting, and luring someone to you”. It deals with the playful behavior and communicative advances. This activity is known as one of the ways to start romantic relationships. Nevertheless, there is one paradox. When these relationships are already started and issued officially, flirting becomes the undesired notion. In the consciousness of many people, flirting is associated with the betrayal, which has the power to destroy the family. Nevertheless, it is a rather limited opinion. Flirting with other people after marriage give spouses an opportunity to express their personalities and enhance self-perception. In addition, flirting between husband and wife is the efficient method to save the interest to each other. Nevertheless, it is necessary to take into consideration that there is a slight line between flirting and vulgar behavior. That is why married couples should learn how to implement flirt in a correct way to save their marriages, strengthen relationships, and get pleasure.
Benefits of Flirting Outside the Family
Firstly, flirting is the way to interact with other people. Even married couples need to lead the social life. That is why flirting is used for them as the way to contact with others. It has been found that flirting may assist both men and women in the issues of maintaining friendly relationships and getting the approval of others. For example, such nonverbal factor as the smile, which is one of the essential flirting components, has the power to create the favorable conditions for collaboration. In addition, married couples apply flirting techniques to solve the problematic social situations. For instance, they may flirt to get out of a speeding fine or get the discount on the purchase.
Secondly, it is the mechanism to understand personal value as well as the one of the spouse. In other words, flirting gives an opportunity to see the attitude of others people and compare it with the one, which is received in the family circle. Psychologist Arthur Aron underlines that flirting is a way for married people to “test their spouse, as if checking whether there is an alternative possibility to their partner that might be better”. Although it may seem that it denies the main rule of marriage – to say together despite all hardships, in fact, it has the sense from the biological perspective. Human beings, similarly to animals, are ruled by the instincts. The most powerful of them deal with the sexual desire and the birth of offspring. Due to it, flirting is an unconscious method to be assured that it will be possible to find the alternative if the spouse leaves the family or dies.
Finally, flirting is the psychological remedy for the married couples. It has been found that this activity provides both men and women with positive states and emotions. The first one deals with confidence. The people, who receive enough attention outside the family, have a strong sense of personal dignity. For example, the recent survey indicates that 75% of working married women defines flirting as the method to gain confidence in the working surroundings. The second psychological impact of flirting bases on the positive mood. According to Brandi Frisby, married women tend to behave more softly with their husbands after flirting with other men. Moreover, men may even forget the offenses of their wives without any arguments for 12% more than before flirting. The third domain deals with the evaluation of the personality. The acceptance of the flirting signs and the response to them are the proofs of beauty and attractiveness. It has been revealed that married people, especially women, regard flirting as the way to get to know the opinions of others about their look, clothes, style, etc.
Danger of Flirting
Nevertheless, flirting may bring not only advantages but also disadvantages for the family life. Firstly, there is a slight line between flirting and actual romantic or sexual relationships. In other words, flirting can easily transform from the innocent game into the betrayal. For example, a married woman illustrates the move from the playful nature of flirting to the more profound nature of a committed romantic relationship in the following way, “We flirted and looked for each other constantly, until one day we realized we were not just playing anymore, the flirting had transformed into very deep feelings for both of us. He had reached deep inside my heart and touched where no other man has ever before”.
Secondly, flirting as any other game may turn into the addiction. The constant attention of the opposite sex outside the family does not only build the wall between the spouses but also bring the tendency to polygamy into their family. In other words, the people, who are over engaged with flirting, will not be able to be satisfied by the care of only one person. The danger of this situation deals with the appearance of jealousy and misunderstandings. Moreover, the desire of polygamy may not stop on the level of innocent flirting with words and smiles but develop to the perspective of sexual actions.
Finally, filtration acts as the catalyst for the relationships, which have already experienced some problems. In other words, the spouses may use flirting as the way to find the new partner. According to Bernarte, et al., boredom in family life is one of the main reasons, which make the married people look for the others. In addition, in some cases, flirtation is the way to compensate the lack of attention and care inside the family.
The Strategy of Efficient Flirting
As flirting may be harmful to the family life, it is necessary to know the strategy how to implement it in the correct way. The first rule deals with trust. Flirtation should not be the secret for the spouse. To maintain trustful relationships, wife and husband should talk each other about their meetings and online chatting. There is even nothing bad in informing about the details flirting with the opposite sex. Such open conversations do not only enhance the reliability but also may make the positive sexual effect. It has been found that the information that the wife or husband has received the attention from the opposite sex is a powerful arousal factor.
The second rule of efficient flirtation is based on the temperance. Married people cannot enjoy the whole range of flirting mechanisms. Although they are not prohibited from expressing their attention to the people outside the family circle, it should not be based on the sexual context. Moreover, they should take into consideration that their status may make people treat their behavior in an ambiguous way. In many cases, it leads to the appearance of many rumors and slander. That is why, it is advised for married people to treat the issue of flirting carefully and reasonably.
The Difference between Different Kinds of Flirting
Not all kinds of flirting are appropriate for married people. For example, “flirt for fun” – the interaction between people, in which the parties understand that it will not lead to something serious, is treated as a favorable activity. It bases mainly on eye-contact, smiles, compliments, and friendly conversations. “Flirt for fun” does not strive to achieve any physical contact such as kisses, hugs, etc. This kind of flirtation provides the spouses with all the benefits, described in the previous paragraphs. Moreover, it does not create marriage jealousy or fake expectations of the object of flirting.
However, “flirt for intent” has the power to destroy the family. This kind of filtration can be defined as the advances with the intention of the following physical contact. In other words, filtration is used not only as the means to get the short-term attention but a long-term one, accompanied by the sexual interaction. It is possible to define “flirt for intent” with the help of such factors as ongoing efforts to reach the intimate space, physical contacts with hands, and romantic gestures such as kisses and hugs. “Flirt for intent” is one of the signals, informing about the possible betrayal. That is why married people should be especially attentive to it.
The peculiarities of the modern life allow flirting even in the indirect way. It becomes possible with the help of online services. This kind of flirting is known as “cyber flirting”. Although it seems that it cannot be harmful to the married couples, it has some hidden dangers. Firstly, anonymity may encourage people losing control. Due to it, they can even miss the moment when the innocent online “flirt for fun” will turn into “flirt for intent”. In addition, “cyber flirting” is the source of jealousy. As the users are allowed to put the personal passwords on all social networking sites, the spouses can only imagine the topics of each others’ chats. In some cases, the guesses lead to the unjustified quarrels and conflicting situations.
The Appropriate Mechanisms for Flirting
However, married people should know not only how to choose the correct type of flirting but also the constituents of it. The first perspective deals with the issue of actuality. The verbal and non-verbal signs should be chosen due to the situation of communication. For example, to kiss hands is regarded as an outdated practice. It is appropriate only for the formal meetings and events. The second perspective is based on the gender roles. Women and men are expected to behave in a different way. For example, to be treated as a polite person, men should be the first to say hello and start the conversation. Females are expected to be a little bit shy. That is why direct staring is not regarded as a normal practice for them. Nevertheless, there are some universal methods of flirtation, which are appropriate for both males and females. One of them is the smile. It is regarded as the mechanism of attracting the attention and creating the positive attitude, disregarding the gender of communicators. The final perspective focuses on the marital status. Married people cannot implement the whole range of flirting techniques. Some of them may be treated as the vulgar behavior. For example, persistent kisses, hugs, and touches may be evaluated as the signal for the physical contact and betrayal. However, there is nothing wrong in the interaction with others through eye-contact, smile, gestures, body language, and voice.
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Benefits of Flirting Inside the Family
People mainly associate flirting with the interaction with the people outside the family. Nevertheless, this type of communication should exist even between the spouses. Flirting inside the family provides both wife and husband with many advantages. Firstly, filtration is the method of reviving the feelings. It helps the couple to immerse into the romantic atmosphere and escape from the hardships of routine. Secondly, it is an efficient technique of sexual arousal. Flirting should be used as the prelude to prepare the spouses for the intimate interaction. Finally, flirting is the tool for the psychological unity. In other words, such tools of it as compliments, smile, eye-contact, touches, kisses and hugs are the inseparable parts of the harmonious relationships. They make people notice the tender feelings of each other, keep up the interest, and feel own importance and attractiveness.
To sum up, flirting is a rather controversial notion from the position of its implementation in the life of married people. It is believed that it should take place only before the marriage as the means to find the partner. Nevertheless, it is a rather limited opinion. Flirting after marriage is not only possible issue but an efficient one. It may provide the couples with such benefits as enhanced social interaction, the feeling of self-dignity, realization of own values, and psychological relaxation. Nevertheless, it is necessary to be careful to not to pass the slight line between innocent flirting and the proposals for the physical contacts, leading to the betrayal. The possible way for this control deals with choosing the correct style of flirting for the interaction with the people outside the family. In addition, the married people should know, which signs may be treated as friendly attention or game and, which ones are regarded as vulgar behavior. Moreover, married people should remember that flirtation should exist not only outside the family but also inside of it. It is the key to both sensual and psychological mutual satisfaction and unity of the spouses.