According to the experts, there are many exciting new ways for our generation to cheat.
Recent studies say that indecent social media behavior accounts for one in seven divorces, which isn't that surprising when you consider 58 percent of people claim to know their spouse's phone and Facebook passwords. Meanwhile, another study found that 76 percent of women think flirty texts are cheating, compared to 59 percent of men. The verdict's in: Liking someone's Insta pic from over a month ago is the new equivalent of deep-throating someone who isn't your boyfriend. But forget all that for a second, is good old fashioned cheating still alive and well?
We asked a group of young philanderers how they got busted cheating, whether social media played a part, and what their moral attitudes to monogamy are.
"I cheated on my boyfriend in a Berlin gang bang."
VICE: What stage was the relationship at when you cheated?
Ben, 23, from Manchester: I'd been dating my boyfriend for a year and a half when I cheated on him. The relationship had starting fizzling out—at least from my perspective. He was the personification of a gaslighter: always telling me how I should feel, criticizing me, and putting his opinion above my own. It was the first time I'd cheated on someone, but I was so over the relationship.
Where did you do the deed? Was social media involved?
Nope. Very much IRL. Two friends and I went to a big cool techno club, called Berghain, in Berlin. I'm a gay man, and they are both gay women. Anyway, we ended up having a kind of "best friend orgy" with a ton of other guys. Then myself, and two of the other guys snuck off, and one thing led to another, and then they both fucked me in a sex sling. So I guess when I say "cheat," I don't mean a naughty kiss in a club; I mean a full on spit roast on a sex sling in Berlin.
Did you enjoy it?
I loved the sex. But beyond that, it kind of sealed the fate of my relationship. It dawned on me that it was much more fun to get Eiffel Towered by these dudes than to constantly have my grasp on reality fractured by my emotionally abusive boyfriend. It was really the nail in the relationship coffin, and I have no regrets.
How did you get caught?
I told the story really loudly at a pub where my boyfriend and a few other friends were, including those I'd orgied with. I completely forgot to omit myself. Probably subliminally on purpose, but I truly wasn't intending to tell my boyfriend about getting boned by two guys. It was quite unfair of me, really. I'm happy I'm not in that relationship anymore, but I feel very mean about cheating on him and telling him. In hindsight, that wasn't necessary.
"I was cheating on my boyfriend with two different guys for six months. I was playing with fire."
VICE: Tell me how you cheated.
Nora, 30, s outh London: I was in a long-term relationship. First I had a fling with someone at work that happened over WhatsApp, Gchat, Facebook Messenger, in the office kitchen, and at work lunches, while getting drinks after work, and after work parties. Then I also cheated with someone else later, which was also done through messenger apps and IRL at dinners, bars, and parties. My boyfriend was living in another country for part of this time, but there was a definite month-long period where everyone was in the same one-mile radius.
How did you get busted?
I can't believe I wasn't found out sooner. I was playing with fire for about six months. I was found out in multiple ways. With one guy, I invited him to a party that I was absolutely certain no "mutual" people would be at, and the second we walked through the door holding hands, my boyfriend's best friend was inexplicably there and was like, "Hey.... who's this guy...?" He immediately told my boyfriend. I claimed we were just friends, but he didn't believe me.
Do you regret it?
Actually, no. I was going through a really traumatic time with my family, and my boyfriend was unbelievably shitty and unsupportive, so the cheating was basically a "fuck you" for not caring. I didn't cheat with randoms; I cheated with the male friends in my life who were really supportive and who I cared about deeply. Maybe I shouldn't have made everything physical, but I was barely coping, and I was taking a lot of drugs to escape. I needed it.
Would you be more careful next time?
I really don't think I'd cheat again. It was a symptom of my chaotic life. I'm much more together now, and I'm in a blissfully happy relationship. The thought has honestly never crossed my mind, and it's been three years. I definitely don't believe that "once a cheater, always a cheater" thing.
WATCH: 10 Questions You Always Wanted to Ask a Tantric Sex Guru
"My boyfriend locked himself in the bathroom and re-downloaded Tinder on my phone…"
VICE: So what were you doing that you shouldn't have?
Nadia, 26, Nottingham: I was in a long distance relationship and secretly used Tinder for dating, fucking, and free dinners, but I was always careful to delete the app prior to my boyfriend's visits. He was living abroad, I was in the UK, and he didn't know many people here, so I thought I was safe. Sadly, I was wrong—he had the intuition of an Australian cattle dog.
How did he catch you out?
I was scrambling eggs for us one Sunday, and meanwhile, he somehow managed to unlock my phone. He locked himself in the bathroom with it and re-downloaded Tinder, at which point matches started popping up in droves. But he didn't stop there. Instead, he decided to impersonate me to various past dates until he could present an ironclad case and confront me.
What happened when he confronted you?
I was in such a state of shock about his flagrant disregard for my privacy that I could hardly register what had happened. Normally I'm quite mouthy, but suddenly I found myself speechless. I suppose there wasn't really any defending myself by that point anyway. The evidence was there in his hand. We broke up on the spot.
How do you feel about it now?
Well, it later came out that he was a pretty loathsome cheater himself, which totally explains his astute intuition. It takes one to know one, right?
"He was in my room wearing only his boxers. It was quite obvious really."
VICE: What was your relationship like. How long had you been together and was it going well?
Emily, 20, north London: We were 17, and we'd been together for two years. He was "a really nice guy" and also super hot and 6'4''. He was very dumb and wrapped around my little finger. And he had erectile dysfunction. But I loved him a lot, and he looked after me when I got out of control, and my family adored him. My mom loves tall men, and he was an army cadet, so she approved. My grandma used to give us both money to spend on dates, which mostly consisted of drinking in the park. I mean, we were 17.
How did the cheating come about?
I took tons of pills one day in the park with a group of older people I didn't really know, and I kind of fell in love with this other boy. He was weird and really beautiful. He still is, actually. At the time I felt like I didn't have a choice, really. It was just such a strong feeling. I can still feel it now. He came back to my house, and he never really left.
How did you get caught?
The army cadet came over to surprise me—he had been away and got back a day early. I also think he was trying to catch me, maybe? He had seen some mysterious texts from time to time. Pill boy was at my house wearing only his boxers. I think it was quite obvious?
How did you get out of it?
I said that pills boy had been kicked out by his mom's place and so needed a place to stay and also suffered from similar "issues" as me that army cadet just wouldn't understand. I used mental health as a crutch and kind of beat my boyfriend with it, which wasn't fair. I insisted nothing was going on, and he believed me. A week later, it was all a waste of time anyway because I broke up with army cadet to be with pill boy.
Have you ever cheated again?
Yes. I can't seem to help it. I swore I never would after seeing my dad do it to my mom over and over and over. But yes, I have. Not always drunk, either. "Sins of the father..." seems too easy a get-out clause, but whenever I cheat, I always think immediately of my childhood, so maybe it's linked?
"I drunkenly told my girlfriend I cheated. Then forgot I'd told her."
VICE: What led you to cheat on your partner?
Amy, 25, Brighton: I don't have a good excuse. The relationship was going well at that point; I was totally in love, and I wasn't even romantically interested in the person I cheated with. All I can really put it down to is the fact that we were doing long distance, I hadn't kissed anyone in four weeks, someone went in for it, and I didn't say no.
So what happened exactly?
I was out having drinks with a friend. It was one of those balmy summer nights where everyone's acting quite wild, and you can tell something is going to go wrong. We drank way too much, went to a shit party, flirted with each other for entertainment, then decided to get out of there to get food. On the way to the restaurant, in the taxi, she kissed me, and I kissed her back.
How did your girlfriend find out?
The minute the bill came I told my friend I needed to go home, and that the kiss had been a bad idea. She insisted I stay and we go out, but I literally ran off. I was wasted. I then called my girlfriend and told her what had happened. I'd like to tell you how that phone call went, but I can't remember it. The next morning, I woke up with a terrible headache. My girlfriend had called me a bunch of times. When I phoned her back she said, "We need to talk about what happened," and I was just really confused. How did she know? She sensed my confusion and worked out that I couldn't remember telling her. I think that might have worked in my favor because she definitely switched from angry to slightly concerned about me.
Did you stay together?
Yep. For quite a while. But it definitely put a seed of doubt in her mind about whether she could trust me, and a seed of doubt in my mind about whether I could trust myself. I'm with someone else now and behaving a lot less idiotically. I wish I could look back on that relationship and say I gave it my best shot, but I think I only gave it 90 percent, which makes me sad. But hey, long distance is hard.
*Names and minor details have been changed.