In The Modern World Is Kissing Still Cheating?

In the anthemic Killers song Mr Brightside, Brandon Flowers utters the profound words “It was only a kiss”. But is there such a thing as only a kiss? Is kissing cheating or is it irrelevant? And where are the lines? Is getting off with someone who is gay, okay? Is it okay if you don’t use your tongue? The Versed investigates.

Generational differences

While we don’t want to pigeon hole generations I think that Generation Z people are more liberal. They have grown up with technology and their lives are so entwined with others that they have a false sense of intimacy with a much larger group of friends. I think this has led to a liberal outlook on monogamy and perhaps sex in general

Gen Y – Millenials

Not meaning to blame everything on technology but simply pointing out that Millenials cross that divides where we were brought up without social media and had it invade our world. We are halfway house between our Gen Z and Gen X cousins. While we have leaned towards being sexually liberated, we still feel massively guilty about it.

Gen X

Despite being young during the swinging 60’s Gen X’ers quite often espouse old fashioned values on the face of it. That’s not to say they don’t commit adultery. I think they do this more than ever. It just they tend to keep their private life more private. This is possible as a result of not growing up around social media (technology again! Pfftt).


This is a fairly new concept. But the idea is that you have several consenting lovers at the same time. Older generations often shake their head at the idea and it is far more common in younger generations, but it sort of takes cheating out of the equation. Although this is not widely practised it is “a thing” now and perhaps an indication and example of the more relaxed views on infidelity in younger generations.

Case by case

So where is the line? While this sounds like a cop-out it very much depends on the individuals involved. Some may find it quite sad but this is possibly a conversation that needs to be had in a relationship. If one partner considers kissing cheating and the other doesn’t then it could lead to a lot of pain. The old-fashioned view is that if you are with someone then their lips should be reserved for their partner, ostensibly the one they love. If you carry that viewpoint and your partner doesn’t then you are on the highway to heartache.


Perhaps in modern society intent of the kiss is more important. Is it a big deal if when drunk someone locks lips? Maybe, maybe not. Did it get “handsy”? Was there intent to take the other person home? Did it mean anything? These questions are contentious and hard to gauge. For many of us, the thought of our significant other with their eyes closed and their lips meeting somebody else’s is more heart wrenching then them having sex with somebody else. After all, kissing represents something more than just sexual urges, it represents love.

Do you need to kiss others?

Ultimately if you are polyamorous and everything is clear you should just crack on. However, if you are in a monogamous relationship why not get your kisses from your partner? You can’t hurt anyone if you don’t do anything hurtful. Perhaps you are in a relationship with someone who isn’t a fan? If that is the case and if it is important to you then maybe you need to reevaluate if you are with the right person rather than getting your needs met elsewhere. Find someone that ticks all the important boxes, you deserve it.

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