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Are the tech savvy wired for infidelity?

Jamal Shahid SHAIKH

Wednesday 28 April 2004, by SHAIKH*Jamal Shahid

What really is infidelity? Mumbaiites differ...

Is it the beep of the SMS or the click of the mouse ? The rustle of the extra-marital sheet or mental chemistry that ruins a marriage? Or is it the big S-sex-that leads to shock, split and separation. It’s a bit of everything or all of one thing. Clearly, there isn’t a straight route to splitsville. Infidelity is all about degrees.

Three months ago, software engineer Gautam Punjwani (26) married fashion design student Aarti Chhabria (21). Last week, they filed for divorce citing "incompatible ideals". "Aarti couldn’t tolerate SMS messages from my female colleagues." Or take the case of Haseena Merchant. "My husband lives in Kuwait for 11 months a year. On his last visit, he found that I indulged in harmless net chats . He’s refused to speak to me since."

Actress Amrita Arora agrees that technology creates cracks: "It’s a matter of reciprocation. If my boyfriend replies once or twice, to blow her off, it’s fine. But anything more than that is not on."

Ad sales executive Shaina Kapadia Mehta (28) says trust is a factor. "My equation with my husband is so strong that even when I shared a room with a male colleague on a budget trip recently, Siddharth didn’t raise an eyebrow!"

Another concept that’s fast gaining ground is ’polyamory’ - ’loving more than one.’ Couples accept that their partners indulge in sex outside the relationship , drawing the line at being emotionally involved. "If my love is unconditional, why can’t I accept that another woman can satisfy my man’s desires better than I can, and let him be a happier man?" asks painter Purvi Kamat (34).

Actress Mallika Sherawat says infidelity is in the mind. "The very thought of being with someone else would amount to cheating, the physical act isn’t necessary," she says.

Marriage counsellor Dr Anjali Negi has the last word: "I’ve seen cases of infidelity that range from uncontrollable jealousy to SMS problems. The most common understanding of the term would be ’anything goes as long as it isn’t phsycial’. But exceptions like divorce on silly grounds like net chats and open-sex relationships are a reality as well."

See online : The Economic Times


in The economic Times, Wednesday, April 28, 2004.

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