There has a been a lot of talk about recent events having to do with a certain “Governator.” Some headlines have mentioned the word “transgression” (I wonder where you’ve heard that word before?) and other times, it’s been the flat out “cheater.” We all know what that word means but what about transgression and why is that word being used more? Is there really a difference? Does it then make it justifiable? Does it create a standard for the future of sleeping around? This short post will answer all of those questions.
Let’s start by talking about the definitions of the two words.
Cheater • a person who behaves dishonestly in order to gain an advantage
Transgression • an infringement or leap of bounds of (a moral principle or other established standard of behavior)
It should go without saying that I am not a fan of cheating and whether you word it one way or another, it’s still an act of deceit and unhealthy for any exclusive relationship.
The word cheater is pretty self-explanatory but let’s talk about the term transgression. The major phrase that is up for discussion is,
“established standard of behavior.”
This implies that the said “standard” is established between the two parties, not by the general public. For example, if it is pre-established that one party is seeing other people, then there is no transgression. Open relationships, friends with benefits and polygamy (through cultures and religions) can also be applied here.
Next, let’s talk about not the nature of the word, but the implications of the word. When you hear or say that someone “cheated” or is a “cheater,” it’s about as bad as having a delinquency on your credit. It stays with you and you’ll need a pristine record for the next several years before people “forgive” (note, I didn’t say “forget”). When you use the word “transgression,” it implies a slip of thought, a misstep that was out of your control or a lapse of judgment. It seems to make it seem like it was a one-time mistake and it won’t ever happen again.
In comparison to the “anchor” on your credit, this is to be seen as a slap on the wrist. It can be forgiven and over time, forgotten. But just like the implications of cheating, it will take a great deal of work.
How many of you remember Kobe Bryant’s transgression?
Look at your friends or people you know who have made mistakes. You can probably determine which ones will be more likely to be repeat offenders and those who just made a stupid mistake.
At the end of the day, sleeping around outside your exclusive relationship is wrong and once you make that mistake, it’s not a good situation to be involved with. Be open, be honest and set expectations appropriately. You’d be surprised what a difference can be made if you just communicated your true thoughts and feelings.