Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Question on love

  1. Apr 5, 2006 #1
    what are the ethics of love?
    i mean, is it ethical to give someone else the option of cheating on their boyfriend/girlfriend?
    or should you deny your heart?
    ive heard
    all is fair in love and war, but is it ethical?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 5, 2006 #2


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    I think you run into problems when you try to create an abstract model for a complicated thing such as a relationship.

    In addition each relationship can be so much different from the next that trying to come up with a universal truth is nearly impossible.
  4. Apr 5, 2006 #3
    i guess what i was looking for was advice, not an abstract answer
  5. Apr 5, 2006 #4


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Well like I said to answer the question you need to know the details of the situation ;)
  6. Apr 8, 2006 #5
    well, first of all, you have to look into how you would feel... that is your first reaction towards it.

    love is a stonge innter human emotion and it has hidden guidelines within each of us. they may vary from person to person as it is up to interpreation, but the basic principle remains that same.

    personally, i do not think it is nautal to allow your mate to have another. exculsivness. God created Adam and Eve not adam eve and john. ask yourself how you feel instctivly.
  7. Apr 8, 2006 #6
    People always have the option of cheating, whether you give it to them or not. However, they deal with the possible consequences of that cheating. So, if you ask whether it is ethical to say that there will be no consequences, then I'd have to say yes it is ethical. However, if that would emotionally harm the person that is being cheated upon (even if they gave permission), then the person doing the cheating is acting unethically. It is behavior which is ethical (or not) and not emotions.
  8. Apr 8, 2006 #7
    A man (or women) is their own best friend--thus one ought to love self the most--that is the ethics of love as presented by Aristotle in Nicomachean Ethics.
  9. Apr 10, 2006 #8
    How can anyone present an actual rule for something like that? I agree with dave, if they are hurting you then it is unethical. Its up to you to communicate that to them.
  10. Apr 10, 2006 #9
    If you define ethics as the social moral code of large groups of people, then, at least in the US, cheating is unethical. I think you would find that most people would view it as such, especially when presented with no other details. "Cheating" as a word describes exactly the social connotations behind subjects like bigamy in a society of monogomists.
    (Man, in writing this post I'm wishing there were a less negatively connotated word than "cheat")

    But morally, it's a whole new can of worms, because "morality" I think typically describes an individual's moral feelings, rather than "ethics" which is more often used (I think) in describing societal morals.

    The best answer to give is that it's a question for the 3+ parties involved to answer. Morally, the reason not to have relations with others is to make your partner feel that they have unique value to you. Not to do so makes them feel less special and important. Also (more minorly) it may make you or the person you're cheating with feel bad because *they* don't want to be cheated on, and so feel as though they're being bad significant others. The desire to cheat my overcome that negativity, but it's an existant negativity nonetheless.

    Hence, the real answer is it depends on how the parties involved feel, particularly the one being "cheated on". People who are more self-confident are probably less likely to feel hurt, and will be better about it than those who are more socially dependant. But you'll never find out, really. Your best bet is to ask about the situation, and guage it as best you can.

Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook