Following the hacking of Ashley Madison, the famed dating site for cheaters, Katherine Rosman, journalist for The New York Times, asks, Is There Such a Thing as ‘Ethical Cheating’? In her article she reviews OpenMinded.com, a new site for married people seeking romantic and sexual connections outside of their marriage. The difference between OpenMinded.com and AshleyMadison.com, according to Brandon Wade (founder of OpenMinded.com) is communication. OpenMinded.com is for people interested in a new monogamy, recognizing that the traditional model of monogamy is not working anymore. I reviewed OpenMinded.com earlier this year: Can you ethically cheat on your partner? My question: Isn’t “ethical cheating” an oxymoron? Whenever anyone goes outside of their primary monogamy agreement, regardless of the “openness” of the original promise, betrayal can happen. Being polyamorous or in an open marriage does not guarantee that either partner will not stray outside the relationship agreement. Cheating connotes betrayal and heartbreak. An essay on OpenMinded.com suggests informing partners of intention to stray. When I work with couples interested in opening their marriage and redefining their monogamy agreement, I emphasize negotiation in order to meet both partners needs for intimacy and security.
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