Is it possible for a husband to cross a line with another woman without intending to? The short answer is: Yes.
To put it bluntly, it is easy for a man to begin capturing another woman’s heart without even
realizing it. You think you’re just having an enjoyable conversation with a coworker, but she may see it as the only attention she’s had all week. Before you know it, your conversations move from friendly chatter to intimate subjects.
We’re not suggesting you can’t have friendships with other women, but we are warning you that it’s easier than you think to capture the heart of another woman outside of your marriage.
So, if you spend a lot of time around other women at work and at church — how can you make sure you never cross any lines with them? Here are some danger signals to look for in other women:
Intense eye contact
Excessive reference to your importance
Wanting to talk about intimate topics
Touching your arm or rubbing your back during conversation
Talking more about you than about her husband
Performing as if you’re her audience
Think of it this way, if this woman invited you into her house and you were alone, would the
topics and conversation stay the same as they do in public and/or with an audience? If she is suggestive in her conversation, confiding about her husband not meeting her needs, causing you to sympathize with her or pity her, watch out. Does she tell stories that have a suggestive tone or lead you to see her in that light? Does she make references to her body or inferences about her bedroom?
I know this may sound extreme, but it is best if you do not encourage touch with a woman other than your wife. If a woman is touching physically, it’s a good indication she is touching emotionally. If you are accessing the emotions of a woman other than your wife, you are entering a major danger zone. It is as intimate for her as preparing for sex—it is that serious. No matter how appealing the attention of another woman is to your manhood, an innocent friendship can quickly take you by surprise and lead you down a path that you’ll soon regret.
A word of advice: Trust your wife’s instincts in this area. If she suggests that another woman is
behaving inappropriately, your wife is probably right. Most women have radar, an innate alertness to nonverbal communication and an ability to translate body language into emotional facts. Your wife probably is able to see these things clearly, so don’t criticize or blame her warnings on insecurity. Regard it as a gift from God that will keep you out of danger.
Most likely, you’re a “good guy with good motives” and you may like to give a hug to a gal once
in a while. Unfortunately, you have no idea what condition that woman’s heart is in. If a woman isn’t having her emotional needs met by her husband, she could easily become set off by the touch of another man—by your warmly touching her. This is also true when dealing with single women. Coupled with affirmation and care, your touch could unintentionally start a forest fire.
*Our book, Guard Your Heart, can help equip you and your spouse with the tools to protect your marriage. It's available in our online bookstore!