If a tree falls in a forest and no one hears it, has it made a sound? The intrigue this question provokes is related to a central idea in postmodern philosophy, which is; a phenomena cannot be truly perceived apart from the context in which it is situated. A very obvious example of this would occur in a visit to the zoo, where we watch animals and think we are seeing true animal behavior. But what we are seeing are animals behaving in cages while experiencing being observed by humans. Their behavior is altered in ways that prevent us from knowing their most true nature. What has this got to do with undisclosed affairs?

If you are having a secret affair and still trying to carry on your primary relationship as though nothing has changed, you are under an illusion, which is; what you are observing about your primary relationship is unaffected by your secret. In the previous post I described some of what happens to your partner once they get the sense that something is going on, but here I want to address what happens to you in your primary relationship.

By not disclosing the affair you are altering your experience of your partner. No matter how much you may deny this, the very act of deception leads to their devaluation. That is because you now know this partner as someone who is being duped. As such, the power dynamic changes, you are in control and your respect for your partner begins to erode. This is true even if you find yourself feeling a new kind of tenderness for your primary partner, this tenderness is most likely a form of condescension. Your partner becomes like a child that needs your protection, and you convince yourself you are doing that by carrying on the deception. Your primary partner looks more and more neurotic as he or she feels inexplicable changes in you and is given no avenue to address them. In contrast, your new exciting partner looks better and better. He or she in on the secret with you, and so shares a kind of power. The lover has become the special one, and basks in the glow of that position and as a result, is at his or her very best. Meanwhile, your self esteem can be at an all time high because you have two people in love with you. This creates an illusionary gap between how together you feel and how dysfunctional your primary partner appears, one who no longer feels loved at all.

This new elevated self-esteem is brittle, however, because if you look below the surface you find that you feel guilty and anxious. You are kept very busy between your two relationships and also trying to keep the rest of your life going, and this busyness protects you from these feelings.  (For a more in-depth description of what can happen to your biochemistry during an affair click here.)

This is all very problematic if you are at a point where you feel pressured to make a decision about who to be with. It is important to think about how things were with your primary partner before the affair. Most likely you were dissatisfied to some degree in your primary relationship, but these dissatisfactions probably are magnified now. It might be important to remember how you experienced your primary partner when you first fell in love because that is the same context you are experiencing your new lover in now.

This Post Has 83 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    My ex left for 15 months, then decides to pop back up. He is not a touchy-feely person and does not know how to show love. I’m dating another guy who expects me to just drop him. But the new guy has said a couple of mean things and it’s off to a bad start. Why would my ex leave for that long without notice? Also he wants me to move out of state with him away from my family. Please any answer. So confused.

  2. Anonymous

    I, as the other woman, am now feeling so down for almost a month now after I realized everything he told me is not going to come true. I am 29 years old and fell in love with a 50 year old white man from Denmark. He told me he had divorced almost 3 years ago and just lived with his ex because of their 15 year old son who is sick (OCD and ASPERGERS). I know the connection we have is so strong and we feel so much deep love for each other. I know that what he told me was true except the divorce part. He told me he was unhappy in their marriage for almost 5 years now and they were separated (living in different houses) for a year. Then, that time I came to the picture. He told me he loves me so much and he doesn’t love his wife anymore or he didn’t really love her before. I was very shocked when i learned that he wasn’t divorced yet and yes it is very very painful until now. We decided to end our relationship because he talked to his wife and she promised to forgive him and give him the attention he needs. They will even go to therapy next month to make them really think about if there is something that they can fix or not in their marriage. He decided to stop communicating with me; he can’t because he said it is also very very painful for him. I know he feels guilty for everyone, his daughter and wife know about me. He told them last week and he was even very open how much he feels for me. I understand that he wants to fix his marriage because his wife told him she still loves him and for his son who is very sick. But he said I am the one he loves so much and he realized that after 5 years of being unhappy, when we got together he felt very happy again. They tried for many many years to fix their marriage, but didn’t succeed. Last week when they had the long talk, they tried to have the intimacy and sex but he told me he can’t get a hard-on because of what he feels for her and for me. He told me many many times to move on and not wait for him, and every time I said okay I will he suddenly tells me that he loves me very very much. But we will not know more until they will get that 2 days deep therapy.. I am in so much pain but I understand him, and no matter what the outcome I told myself to get up and heal so that one day if ever they end up splitting up I am whole to love him again I know I won’t stop loving him. I know that true love needs to be sacrificed to the happiness of the other.. and true love’s twin is pain. Someday I can update what happen to us here.. I hope you guys give me some virtual hugs because right now that is the only thing I need. Take care

  3. Anonymous

    I love my husband and our family. I reconnected with an old friend from high school and the sparks flew. We are so alike and it is a strong connection. I crossed the line and we have had sex and keep talking (5 months now). I feel so guilty because my husband is a wonderful man (we have issues and always have but it does not diminish his goodness). I feel wracked with guilt but cannot seem to break it off with the bf. He is fully involved with another woman and this is definitely a secret affair. I know it is selfish and narcissistic but I cannot seem to stop.

  4. Anonymous

    I am a 46 year old married woman who reconnected with my first boyfriend in 2011 via FaceBook after getting a friend request. We lived 1100 miles apart, but we spent the first few months just talking via facebook and of course keeping things private only between us. We were both married, but in different phases of life. My one son was grown, and I had a grandchild, where he had three children still in the household. These conversations led to us setting up private emails, and corresponding throughout the day, every day! We met at the end of the first year we reconnected in our hometown during a Christmas break, where I was visiting my Father, and he was taking his Sister back to her home. That meeting was brief, no sex, only kissing, and talking……..Yes he made me feel 14 again during that time. We kept the same communications going in early 2012, and then lost contact when I changed jobs. He searched for me by calling my old employer, but then gave up when he couldn’t find me. In late 2012 I felt a strong reason to reach out to him while I was in Alaska where my Father had turned critically ill while on a trip there. We reconnected in 2012, and met again in 2013 when he attended a conference close to the city where I lived. We met for the day, and connected both emotionally and physically that day, and I felt alive. I returned home knowing that I had fallen in love with this man, but knowing he would never leave his situation, and I think for him it was more physical. However we maintained a daily relationship from 2013- July of 2015 and talked every day for that two year period, unless one of us was on a trip, or it was a weekend ( we never called or emailed over the weekends- that was agreed!) In July of 2015, out of the blue, after he returned for a week from vacation, I got an email that said simply, I can’t do this anymore! Of course there were a few follow up emails, letters, and it ended with a phone call, where he just hung up on me in mid-sentence. Of course I tried to contact him a couple of times in late 2015, to no avail, and no response. In January of 2016, I sent him an email just a friendly “how are you” and truthfully did not expect a response………..but I got one……..we ended up extremely engaged in sexual conversations for the next few weeks, and also met while both of us on trips in Spring of 2016. While together, he made it clear it was our last time………….after our physical time was over, he kind of freaked out on me, told me to Never contact him again………..he crushed me totally. This was a man I was in love with over time. I also love my husband. I am sure he loves his wife and family, but I know there is more to this story. I am honoring the request of No Contact this time, as I know that total separation may or may not heal us. But there is a reason we continue this,,,,,,,,,,,someone please help advise me…………does he have feelings, but just can’t “do both” relationships, or am I possibly just a vulnerable target as he knows so much about me? Feeling lost, confused, and in love with two men……………..I will always love him even if I never talk to him again……….This is the true pain of love……………..

  5. Anonymous

    When I was 17 my first love and I got engaged. He was 21 and the most caring and attentive man. I was so young and decided I wasn’t ready for a heavy relationship and I ended it. I then married a man at 23 because I was pregnant. I didn’t love him but my father said I had to marry him. Being a dutiful daughter I went ahead with the marriage and 8 years and 2 children later divorced. I had other relationships but I found myself thinking about my first love on more occasions than I care to remember. I never attempted to contact him because I thought he would be happy and wouldn’t want to hear from me. For 10 years I have been living with my current partner. He is a wonderful and caring man but he has had a condition for a number of years now that prevents us from having a sexual relationship. He does kiss and cuddle me and always tells me he loves me. However, although I love Him, the relationship just feels like a friendship now. I am not in love anymore. The past 3 years have been horrendous with family illness and deaths and I have put my needs on the back burner.
    Back in September last year I contacted my first love on fbook. I asked if I could add him as a friend and he replied within an hour. He said his tummy was in knots as all the old memories came flooding back. We messaged back and forth for weeks and then met for coffee. He has a partner who he has been with for 33 years. They never married and he has 2 grown children. On our second coffee meeting he said I hadn’t changed. Neither my looks or my nature. He said it was like opening a book and re reading it, decades later to find you still enjoyed it. We both felt like we had never left each other and found each others company so easy. After several coffee meetings we kissed passionately and have been meeting every week since. His partner has no physical contact with him anymore and actually told him a couple of years ago that she doesn’t love him. He has stayed with her though. We are now in a full on affair and have fallen in love. I feel lost without him but I have found my life so much more bearable because he is in it again. We can’t go out for an evening and have normal times together, but I’m happy just to have him in my life. I feel guilt that rips me up sometimes because my partner is such a caring man. I need the physical love my lover gives me. Our past has made our being together so comfortable. I cannot leave my partner because he needs me to help him through his pain and he loves me deeply but I cannot stop seeing my lover. He is my light at the end of a long tunnel.

  6. Anonymous

    Thanks for the brilliant insight #77. You’ve really helped a lot of people with your diatribe on the meaning of love. Pray you are never confronted with what those on this board have dealt with. I can assure you that your judgment is nothing compared to the judgment they pass on themselves daily. It’s easy to take shots from a distance, but things aren’t quite as simple in the real world where the rest of us live. The flesh is weak. None of us, not even you, is without sin.

  7. Anonymous

    All cheaters, all loving OW/OM outside of their marriage are only selfish, self-centered, controlled by their feelings, and they call it love; and are people caring and loving themselves above others. How they can be successful in bringing good fruit for the generations to come. Come on, grow up; what kind of role model do you become for the younger generation? You you are acting out of your feeling of love. First understand what love is. LOVE is very very pure. It does not betray anyone or think bad about another, or even allow anyone else to be seen as a problem. If you are cheating on someone out of your love feeling for another person outside your marriage then I can say boldly it’s not LOVE, It’s a boredom or routine in your married life or some kind of lack within yourself and in your marriage, not the lack in your spouse. So you need to see the gray area inside of you and improve and bring about a change in you not your wife/husband and work on your marriage.
    The one having the affair doesn’t even see the consequences of their act on the betrayed partner. Then why do you marry? Better to stay as you are and carry on sex with whomsoever you wish. Why spoil and hurt your wife/husband’s life, sometimes beyond repair. The pain and agony and torture, mental physical, even sometime much more seriously affects their health. You are presently enjoying your life at the cost of your wife/husband’s life. How the children would be affected and the guilt and shame they undergo disturbing their whole life; you don’t even see that. Children should be able to enjoy their life under the secure relationship of marriage. You don’t see the outcome immediately, but it is growing within them, which will be seen in the years to come. They may fall into addiction or other destructive behavior as well as losing respect for you forever. And when you do such a thing you always have guilt deep within you that you are doing wrong, even if you convince yourself that what you are doing is right.
    This kind of love only mars the lives of everyone else, including you and OW/OM. It does not build up anyone’s life. You are human beings, not animals. Behave like humans.
    LOVE is such a great word and has a great power. Don’t take this word casually. It’s priceless. Keep the value and worth of that word LOVE as it is. Don’t try to change the value, worth and definition of this word. On this word only we can survive. Otherwise no one will love the blind and lame and many other people in this world.

  8. Anonymous

    I married my husband a year and a half ago after a 7 year relationship. In the past, I always had bad relationships with terrible people, including 19 years with an abusive, drug addicted individual. I never cheated on a soul. Ever. My husband was a hard working, attractive individual who was intelligent and treated me well. His mother was dying, and I was losing my house. We were experiencing these terrible things but we had each other. We also shared similar values and views. So of course I continued to see him even though I never felt the fireworks. The only thing we ever really fought about was sex. But no relationship is perfect right? Problem is I was *very* dissatisfied. This was a need I require to be happy. I communicated it frequently and intensely. At one point I even admitted that this was paving the path to infidelity. I really had no idea how I was “supposed” to feel. He was good to me. And I was good to him. And things just moved along. We finally bought a house, married, and had a child all within 2 years. During my pregnancy things worsened. My hormones raging, I was angry and he was having even less sex with me. Every time I tried to tell him what I need he would tell me I had body image issues. It’s called stonewalling. It’s always my fault. I guess one day I just threw in the towel and got my needs met. Was it wrong? Yes. Absolutely. My initial intention, though premeditated, was not to engage in intercourse, but perhaps trade fantasies and pictures. I just longed to feel like a woman again. I would be the one in a million person who meets a cute and super intelligent, funny, compassionate man on a casual sex site. My mind was blown. We traded emails and pictures. We talked about fantasies. This led to general discussions around other topics. We started talking extensively and a month in, I agreed to meet him. I almost backed out. I understood the gravity of the situation and it was sad. I remembered a comment my husband had made the night before when I tried to communicate how his response hurt me the last time I tried to get a particular need met. He told me I didn’t have my priorities straight. So I played that over in my head. I slammed the car door and I pulled out to meet this person. It’s been almost one year. I’ve grown to love this other man in a way I didn’t even know was possible. He’s an incredible person. I’ve never met anyone so fun, adventurous, extremely intelligent, and so nurturing and compassionate. He’s a winning lottery ticket. During this past year I came to realize that there’s more missing than a hit sex life in my marriage. First off, I never really felt in love with him though I care about him deeply. My husband is very judgmental and has made several comments in the past alluding to my lack of intelligence and decision making ability. He’s always felt superior to me and I knew it. He shows very little affection, which I didn’t know I wanted until I got it elsewhere. My lover admires my intellect despite his obviously more advanced mental capacity. He’s also proud of me. I’ve never had that. We’re extremely sexually compatible, and he allows me to nurture him when he’s down which my husband won’t. When his mom passed he wouldn’t even let me touch him. Then he told everybody I was cold. I know this all sounds awful, but they were mostly isolated incidents over the course of 8 years. But they definitely set the tone and left scars. We never have fun. If I request adventure it’s usually too expensive, too late in the evening, or too likely the police will kick us out ;). So now… One year later, I’ve fallen completely in love for the first time in my life with someone who is amazing and has mutual feelings for me. I care so much for my husband. He’s the father of my daughter. And he’s the worlds best dad. The highlight of my day is seeing them together. How can I lose that? The guilt has eaten me alive. I’m hurting everyone. There is no solution. I need to make a choice. I’ve read every book there is. I’m in therapy which has been no help. I think I need a new therapist. I made a commitment to myself that by the month of March, clarity or not, I need to make a change. I told my husband I want to separate. He was shocked. I told him I wasn’t running out yo file divorce, but I need space and time. I don’t know if I want to stay married to him. We are separated now for a week. After a few days, he actually came around. He knows he never dealt with his mom’s death. He’s been depressed. And upon reflection, can’t believe how low his opinion of me has been this whole time. He came up with that on his own. I never mentioned it. But he’s going to counseling and making all these changes. He says we could be great together, and he desperately wants to salvage the marriage. There’s a big piece of me that would like that. No uncertainty? Knowing I can stay in my home. I could keep my family together. I wouldn’t have to miss him, because I would. I know that. But I don’t know if I can ever truly be happy with him, and I need to make a final decision. I can’t continue to waddle with my lover who’s in a ton of pain. Because of me. I’ve tried to cut it off several times. Within a few days I can’t breathe. I love him so much. Most of the literature I’ve read would indicate that it’s impossible to choose because both people offer such different things. It’s like choosing between a tv and a refrigerator. You need both. But it’s not an option. Nobody involved deserves this. In retrospect I can’t say for certain I regret it, because I truly think I found my soulmate (we’ll see), but I would never recommend going down this road. It’s a long, painful, harrowing road. And people stay this way for many years in some cases. That’s not a life. I’m making a choice, and if it turns out to be a mistake? I guess that’s the price you pay.

  9. Anonymous

    22’s story breaks my heart. He clearly feels very deeply his obligation to his wife and cares a lot about her, but he loves the OW. After a lifetime of trying to fight that, he should just be with her.

  10. Anonymous

    I have been IN LOVE since my teens. He was my first love, and after much soul-searching my only real love. Everyone else, of which there are very few, was just a relationship, someone to compare to, just to find out there was no comparison.
    Unfortunately he got married while we were seeing one another. I guess he did not have enough faith in our relationship. So he married what felt “safe” to him. I FOUND OUT BY MISTAKE!!!! Idiot teenager I was.
    He has been married to the same woman for almost 40 years. It was a partnership, great friendship, no sex, and obviously, no children.
    I have been married to what I considered my best friend for over 30 years. Not the love you should marry for.
    I tried to convince myself that my first love had moved on, that he really never was in love with me after all.
    I feel if he REALLY REALLY was in love with me he would have searched me out to see if I was truly happy. Apparently he never wanted to take that chance. He “settled” into his life. Apparently he told himself he thought I was happy. He believed I was, but never REALLY wanted to know for sure. I guess I really wasn’t enough.
    Instead, when my “marriage” was all but exhausted I took a chance and searched him out just to see if he was ok. I told my husband I wanted a divorce.
    As it turns out, both our relationships basically turned out the same way. Married but not in love. No kids. Mine was quite turbulent, living with a raging alcoholic. I convinced myself it was my punishment for not pursuing my first love enough to make him realize that we belong together.

    After decades we began a relationship again, telling ourselves we belonged together after all. It was just as intense physically, and we both still had so much in common. I meant what I said, I was ready to leave. BUT he never told her he wanted out. By mistake she found out, and it’s been hell ever since. He still hides when he wants to talk to me. It’s been months since we have seen one another. I think he doesn’t want to go through the trouble to be with me no matter how old we are. He loves me but…….
    Nothing and no one is perfect. Perhaps none of us wants to compromise enough to be with the one we really and truly love. So I wait until, stupid as it may sound to anyone else, maybe someday, we meet somewhere else, in another place…..
    Maybe God will understand.

  11. Anonymous

    Anyone that is party to misleading anyone into thinking they are the only one is dishonest. To sit there make excuses and try to convince yourself that lying to someone that you are in a relationship with is ok is totally ridiculous. A lie is a lie.. As for being in love with two people.. just because you care for someone doesn’t mean you are in love with them. If you are in a committed relationship and having an affair you are dishonoring the person you are committed to plain and simple. If you respected that person and really cared for them you would either bite the bullet and face the music of telling them you want out of the commitment, or give up the affair and go to counseling to find out where your relationship went wrong not ride the fence. Lying and Fence riding just shows your lack of character and your extreme cowardess. You want to have your cake and eat it too. The spouse and the other woman/man both if they is aware of your affairs needs to kick you to the curb and find someone that will be honest with you, respect you you and

  12. Anonymous

    I want to use my example to show and make you understand the pain of infidelity. My wife and I were both Bible believe believing believe Christians when we married four years ago. Three years down the line she had changed completely and always threatened to kill me so she could have all my money (after being drunk). She made good her threat when she poisoned me with arsenic. I spent several weeks in the hospital and I almost lost my life. My wife knew I knew she tried to kill me and she was not even by my side in the hospital but I told no one she did it because I didn’t want her locked away. I loved her that much. After leaving the hospital we had our worst moments yet because I was angry but I still didn’t want to lose her. I was so heart broken that the one I loved and whom I believed loved me despite our disagreements would want me dead and actually tried to kill me. It hurt that I loved her so much that I didn’t want anyone to know and this had a good effect on Sally. One day she broke down crying and said she didn’t realize that I loved her so much and that she didn’t do it because of any other man (I had kept asking her). It turned out to be true. Sally just wanted control of our money. She even said she told herself that after my death she wouldn’t get involved with another man for years. She just wanted to live life without the struggles we had. She said she loved me and that she was only crazy and being stupid. I trusted her again. Sally started attending church again, she went in for confession and later counseling and rehabilitation. We were a happy couple again and we’re growing stronger. Then the bombshell, my wife fell in love with her counselor. I found out from the note she shared with him. She had written one, discarded it and sent him another (according to her). She wrote “looking forward to seeing your face. I am now happy and you are the reason for my happiness), you mean so much to me.” I was shattered but hoped and prayed it was nothing. I confronted Sally but when she couldn’t look me straight in the eye when she denied it I got my answer and my world crashed. Eventually she confessed to me and said they had told each other that they loved each other. He said if he had met her earlier he wouldn’t have become a priest. She said they never had any private moments together other than counseling time and any touch further than handshakes but they have shared experiences, likes and dislikes,dreams and aspirations. He had told her how much he loved her and she has expressed her love too. My world came crashing down. Now Sally is remorseful but I am so broken I can’t eat and can’t even function. The pain I’m feeling now is more than anything I ever felt. More than when she attempted to kill me. I feel that was between us but this is different. She had given her heart to someone else. It’s the ultimate betrayal. I agree with the guy that said when you tell somebody else “I love you” your marriage is over. You can still stay together but the very thing that brought you together, that you vowed to keep has been doled out to someone else and things can never be same in both your hearts. It is more than emotional adultery or physical. It is divorce in your heart to tell someone else you love them. You had to put their love in the place where your partner’s was to say that. I do not know what to do. It’s been months but I’m still totally shattered.

  13. Anonymous

    #22 and #68 I feel your pain.

  14. Anonymous

    I’m leaving my story as well and I will say I can relate to you, #69. We are experiencing the same earth shattering guilt and indecision. And it is terrible.

    I’ll share my story – to get it out – and to hopefully help another being in my position feel normal. That is what I want to feel again… normal.

    Husband and I have been married for 10 years. We met when I was 16, he was 20. We were always friends and attracted to eachother. We began to finally date when I was 22 and he was 26. I was just finishing up at University. I was kind of a wild child and it was nice to have him totally devote himself to me. During the time we were dating I was just out of a long relationship. A few weeks into dating my husband declared his love for me. It was kind of crazy, I remember thinking. I was out of town for the weekend and he told me over the phone. I didnt tell any of my girfriends. We started to look at rings and I was thrilled. He was a nice guy with a good job and it seemed like the next logical step in life. 6 months of dating, and we were engaged. I remember being so terrified when he got down on one knee. But, I figured, he was nice enough and we had the same friends and he came from a good family. I better just jump at this while I can. What if no one else ever asked me? (I suffer from low self esteem).
    So we married and built a life together. But I was never truly faithful to him. (I am very ashamed of this.) I had baby #1 and had a short affair with a coworker shortly after returning from maternity leave. It wasn’t love… it was just boredom. I chalked it up to the baby getting so much attention all the time from my husband… it was nice to get attention from someone. We called it off and I confessed to my husband and promised I would change my ways. Baby #2 was on the way 3 years later. I was at a new job, and we had a new supplier coming in. That’s when I met him, the other man. I was instantly drawn to him. I hid at my desk to listen to him speak and I got butterflies in my stomach. I thought I was crazy, how could I be attracted to this man when I am obviously happy and pregnant? Nothing happened (of course) but fast forward 9 months and I saw him again at a conference out of town. Everything about him was fascinating. I wanted nothing more than his attention. We had dinner and went to a party, talked all night and ended up quickly sharing a kiss in the elevator before heading home. I wanted more of him, but swore I would not talk to him unless it was work related. When the conference was over, he called me at the office to see if I was OK and I blew him off. I was so embarrassed. But I hoped that I would see him again. We slowly began talking on a regular basis after two more years of seeing eachother at this work event. Finally this year we spent almost 2 days together at the event, talking, getting to know more about eachother. He shared with me something I’ll never forget. When we met the first time when I was pregnant, he snuck a photo of me on his phone because he thought I was the most beautiful woman he’d ever seen. He later showed me the photo. Things continued to progress and our feelings grew deeper. He has been married twice, has one grown son. I am married now 10 years, 2 kids ages 8 and 4. My husband knows about the affair and just how serious it has gotten (He filed for divorce but has not really taken any action, I have moved out) I have agreed to try and work it out with him but it is almost like I am addicted to the other man. I have pushed him away many times but we both believe that we are supposed to be together, despite our age difference (He is 50 I am 34). I wish I could shut off all of the outside influences. My family has all pretty much deserted me and side with my husband. I guess I don’t blame them. He is a good guy, a great dad. He just is not the one for me. I am not sure I am in love with my husband any more. We spent Thanksgiving apart this year, he had the kids. It was terribly difficult for me to be without them and I never want that again. So after Thanksgiving I broke up with the other man and moved back in but my husband does not show me any affection. Nothing that I do is good enough or enough for him and I fear my marriage is over anyways. But the kids… its just so hard.

    I tell my husband daily that I don’t want to get divorced. But to stay with him I need a fresh start. But I am not sure that will even help. I hate myself for my indecision and how much pain I’ve caused my husband and a lot of our family. I wish I could take it all back but at the same time I really truly feel love with the other man. I know I had loved my husband but I feel like this is a different love, definitely more intense.

    I’m depressed all the time and have gained 10 lbs so I know something is killing me slowly. I wish I could find the courage to make a decision.

    Good luck to all of you out there.

  15. Anonymous

    I have been reading all these responses and it does give some relief to see Im not the only one going thru something like this. I still feel like my situation is still worse than anything I have read. My wife and I got together when we were 18 years old. Very good friends that became “fwb”. She got pregnant and had our first child at 19. I knew I wasn’t in love with her but cared about her very much so decided to try to make a life together. We had another child, (now 2 girls) about 2 years after the first. We had issues from very early on as I just knew in my heart that I was not in love with her but wanted to give my children a life with both parents and we definitely are the best two parents I know. Parenting was not the problem, but the lack of interest in each other personally was. We struggled early as young couples with children do but we worked out of it. I worked long hours as a car salesman for 5-6 years making decent money until I was promoted making over six figures. Four years after our second child was born, we had yet another daughter and a year after that another daughter. That’s four girls, and no boys. I finally made the decision to ask her to marry me three years after our last daughter was born and they were all four in the wedding. I just felt there was no other way especially now that we had the four girls and she has been there for me for everything and had my back as I had hers. I kept at it and finally bought our dream house last year. Perfect neighborhood to raise a family and just so thrilled that “we finally made it.” I thought the new house would change things for the better for us. Maybe she would take interest into things I liked or maybe she would fix herself up once in while to show me she cared about making me feel wanted and appreciated. It got worse unfortunately as we were simply co parents that were married that all the girls my oldest now 15 and my hero. She is so mature and Im so proud of the young lady she is becoming. My other girls are 13, 9, 7. I want to say that throughout our relationship I have been unfaithful and was honest with my wife and she even accepted it. I felt like a horrible person the whole time. I felt like there was something wrong with me and I even seeked outside help to try to see what could be done. In the end I always told myself I wasn’t happy or in love with my wife that we simply became a couple because of the children. I got a new job back in February at another dealership and soon met a new hire in July. She was 18 years old, I’m 33. We hit it off on a level I didn’t know existed on top of the fact that I thought that there was something yet again wrong with me. I didn’t understand how I could feel like this about an 18 (now 19) year old girl. However there was no denying that these feelings that I developed so quickly were there and not going away. I filed for divorce 4 weeks after meeting her and a month after that she became pregnant. Yes she is pregnant. I have ripped my family apart and I simply can not forgive myself for it. My oldest daughter has completely shut down. My second youngest who is head over heels for me has had a very very hard time with me being out of the home. These things are affecting me so deeply and in the end I can’t deny the love I feel for this younger girl. Yesterday I was supposed to go see my attorney and go over what was coming up in a week our first hearing and I completely broke down and asked the divorce to be put on hold. Immediately I felt overwhelmed with guilt for the other girl since she is now 4 months pregnant with my child and everything I’ve told her is coming to be not true in her eyes. But the absolute truth is I am madly in love with her and I want to be with her non stop. The children and my wife have had such a hard time with this it has swayed my decision so many times. I just don’t know what to do. I don’t want to wreck my family and them have to look at their daddy in this way and at the same time Im in love with this other person who is now carrying my child. I don’t see any end in sight with this but I have to choose. Obviously the easy thing to do would be to go home as my wife said we could make it work even though I got this girl pregnant and she is going to have the child. She is very scared especially now that I have put the divorce on hold. Im so torn on what to do because I love my children and my wife too. Im not in love with my wife however and I can’t stop thinking of my new found love. I don’t want to hurt anyone anymore. I’m such in despair about the situation and for the first time in my life I feel like ive lose control and don’t know where to turn. My family has basically turned their back on me and does not even acknowledge the other situation. I just wanted to share my situation and I appreciate the other comments as it did make me feel like I was not alone out here.

  16. Anonymous

    Thank you all for your posts. It is comforting to know that I am not alone in dealing with this agony. I married my college sweetheart. I knew at the time she wasn’t my true love or soulmate, but I did love her and following the job, marriage, kids, etc. route seemed the right (and only) course to take, so I did. Even on our honeymoon I felt the lack of connection, spark, and passion. 18 years on, after 3 daughters, a few moves around the country, and a battle with breast cancer, I realized how unhappy I was in my marriage. I had grown tremendously during our marriage and was a completely different person, but my wife, who stayed at home with the kids for 15 years, was basically the same person I married. Neither of us are perfect, but her immature, judgmental, my way or the highway attitude, reinforced by some serious anger issues, became intolerable. But, we have 3 amazing daughters ages 10, 13, and 15, whom I adore and can’t bear the thought of being apart from, so I settled into my life and accepted it for what it was, and what it wasn’t, and made the best of it. I always knew that I would eventually leave my wife, but not until we had raised our daughters

    Then 18 months ago my life was forever changed when I met the OW. I was not looking to meet another woman or have an affair, but as many of you on here realize, when you meet your soulmate it is undeniable and irresistable. It just happened. I couldn’t stop it, and though I regret being unfaithful to my wife, I don’t regret meeting and falling in love with the person I know in my heart to be my soulmate. I’ve been seeing her for 18 months now, and our love is true. I could go on and on about how we feel about each other, but you already know. You’ve felt it too. She is also married but does not have children. We have dreamed, planned, and committed to leaving our marriages to be together, but reality has proven to be much too difficult to overcome.

    I see now how predictable and typical my situation is, though at the time I thought I was the only one in the world dealing with this. I began disconnecting from my wife immediately after meeting the OW. I read here how people can love two people at the same time, and perhaps that’s possible, but it is not for me. Of course I was a coward and feared devastating my wife and kids, so I continued my relationship with my true love in secret. But as I disconnected from my wife, our relationship became more and more untenable. She suspected I was having an affair, but I would not admit to it. We started going to counseling to address our issues. My secret agenda was to use the marriage counseling to pursue separation and divorce and hers was to have a third party tell me what a horrible husband I am and make me change. We were both off base.

    My wife ultimately found an email and exposed my affair. We’ve been in counseling for months, with lots of difficult days and a miserable, tense existence at home along the way. No sex, no affection, and no desire on my part for that to change. I did not stop seeing my love, though I told my wife that I had. I wanted so badly to leave my wife to be with my soulmate, but the thought of hurting my kids is unimaginable. I literally don’t think I am capable of doing it. I guess that makes me weak and cowardly. I accept that is true. I actually left last week, but when my kids called me in tears begging me to come home I came back. I didn’t even last a night. Pathetic.

    My love has decided that she can wait no longer for me, so she is moving on without me. My heart is broken. I have let my true love go. The pain, as many of you know, is excruciating. I am not in love with my wife, and though she desparately wants to save our marriage, I am afraid that #7 is correct. Once you say I love you to someone else it is impossible to go back. My job now is to be the best father I can be to my beautiful girls, and put my needs aside until I am free to pursue them. My wife knows that I am not in love with her, and that I do not desire her, but she holds out hope that I will someday. Perhaps that is true, but I do not think so. It feels like the right thing to do is stay and be there for the kids, but maybe it would be more humane to let my wife go so she can find someone to be truly happy with. If only I had the strength to do that. I will treasure my time with my girls, and make it worth the cost of losing my love.

    I wish I had some sage advice for others going through this journey. I guess #22 has it right. Make a decision and don’t look back. Either way. It will save you a lot of pain and agony in the long run. If you don’t make a decision, someone else will make it for you. Life is a bitch.

  17. Anonymous

    @66. I hear your pain. It is comforting to know there are others in similar situations. For a long time it felt like I was completely alone and that my situation was unique.

    I am in a very similar situation. I was married for 10 years and then had an affair with someone who I had a very deep connection with for years. The kind where there are sparks flying from the moment you meet and years later nothing has changed. We fell in love and I left my wife and lived with the OW for a number of years. However because of guilt and feeling sorry for the pain and suffering I had put my wife through, I did not let her go and instead gave her hope. All the time I was with the OW, I longed to be back with my wife. A while ago I left the OW and went back to my wife. I realize now that I do not love my wife as a husband should but I love her as a good friend. I am still very much in love with the OW and she with me. I know I have to be strong and ask my wife for a divorce and end this now, because if I leave it, it will only come back and bite us all later. But the thought of hurting my wife again just tears me up inside – she does not deserve this pain. I feel pathetic and so bad because I continue to hurt the woman I married.

    I also have the Dante quote and the man from number 22 as my favorite posts here and I will add yours to this list, especially ‘It is natural to be selfish and I have been, but many of my actions were due to not wanting to see the people I love the most in pain.’

    I guess people like us just have to be strong, make the decision and live with it. The hard part is living with the guilt of hurting those we love.
    Good luck to all. Make that decision before the indecision eats you up from inside.

  18. Anonymous

    I feel immense guilt and sadness for my actions and I truly believe I always will.
    I was in a relationship with a man for 10 years who I was deeply in love with. I met someone new and feel in love with her. I left my partner and explained the situation. The hurt and devastation I caused was destroying me from the inside. I was going to get married to the new love but couldn’t go through with it because the guilt and flashbacks to the memories of my original love were overwhelming, I explained the reasons truthfully and two years on I am still suffering with the guilt and pain and have, to my deepest sorrow, been giving my original love false hope.
    I have read the posts above and the ones that have stuck with me are the Dante Alighieri quote, the man from number 22 and the high horse post.
    It is natural to be selfish and I have been, but many of my actions were due to not wanting to see the people I love the most in pain.
    I have come away for a long weekend to spend time figuring out whether I should continue to pursue my new love or try and rekindle my old love.
    I have found answers in the words written above and I personally thank you all for sharing your thoughts and situations. It is a great comfort to know that there are many situations where we believe and are, in fact, torn between two loves.
    I am going to continue down the path of my new love wholeheartedly. I know that I will feel sorrow for the pain I will cause my old love and will have to live with that.
    I can not bear to think that in sixty years I may still be bouncing between two, I guess the only thing that will free me of my torment is to decide and move forward.
    This isn’t a new chapter this is a new book.
    Much luck to all that have posted and those who have not, it’s a hard battle and can consume your life, forgive yourselves and move forward.

  19. Anonymous

    You will find someone you feel the same for but it will take a long time. for me it took 7 years. The way I endured it was to always remind myself that I didn’t want to be in a half relationship and on the side. Even though you love with a passion, you are only an option for mm. If feeling were the same he would be with you. Period. Words are cheap. Men actually do what they really want to do. Someone out their will choose only you and will be willing to climb the mountain, swim the stream . Please don’t waste your time with mm. See the relationship for what it was, appreciate the good things, acknowledge the bad things, part on good terms but do part, don’t hang on or keep in touch or remain an option, and move on. Your great life is out there waiting for you.

  20. Anonymous

    I have been having an on off affair with the same man for about 5ish years.. Because he’s married with kids and I too have kids (separated from their father) we never really let it escalate to anything that could affect our daily lives and unsettle our children’s lives. He loves his wife and from what he’s told me has phases of feeling in love with her and then out of love (I put this down to what happens in a marriage after you’ve been together a while). He lives mostly away from the family home where his wife and children are due to his work commitments.. This provides us with opportunity to text/see each without her knowing or finding out. We’ve always been very connected and in tune with each other and the sex is always very passionate and loving.. The problem is, I haven’t come across anyone yet whom I feel equal or stronger feelings for than what I do with him.. Hence I keep slipping back into old affair habits with him.. Ideally I don’t want to be in love with him because inevitably (because of his kids) I’d never expect him to leave his wife.. But its been really difficult cutting ties with him because I’m in love with him.. It doesn’t matter weather I’ve been in contact with him daily or if we haven’t spoken or seen each other at all for a few months.. It’s always the same feeling.. He is who I want and I’m scared I’ll never find an available man who will match the level of love and feelings as what I have with this man.. Should I settle for second best options and just accept that that’s as good as it will get for me in this lifetime? Or do I keep my love connection going with this man whom I’m in love with but could never expect to leave his wife and children (cause i don’t want those kids to have to suffer just because of my in-love happiness).. Bloody confused 🙁

  21. Anonymous

    I have been married for 7 years…I started working with a guy for less than a week and the chemistry our personalities generated was insane! Like nothing I’ve ever experienced! We became best friends that loved each other…we weren’t having sex! It was personality..we can finish each other’s sentences! Laugh and carry on as if we’ve known each other for years! After about 6 months of this we knew we were in love but both of us were married, and had never cheated. We were deeply emotionally connected and anyone that saw us together thought we’d been together for years. Well, we did finally have sex, about 2 1/2 years ago, for the first time…we both cried after because we felt so bad about what we had done. We weren’t going to do it again…continued to love each other tho, we would meet and just sit in a parking lot and talk for hours. About 8 months later we decided to try to have sex again….we didn’t cry but it was never a good feeling after because of guilt. His wife found out, he protected me and my marriage, leaving it to me to end it if that’s what I was going to do. His divorce was final in January, and now the last 5 months or so we’ve been able to spend more time together, and have had sex pretty regularly. My husband has slept in another bedroom over 3 yrs, so I’m not having sex with both. I don’t love my husband how I love the man I’ve had the affair with. OM is now moving to Tennessee and doesn’t believe I’ll ever leave my husband. That’s not the case though, I do plan on divorcing, and have discussed it, refinanced some things etc….we’re not near any family and struggle to know where to go…I know where I want to be…in Tennessee with my love…I’m afraid he gave up on me though…feeling heartbroken

  22. Anonymous

    I’m crushed by my husband of 10 years, together 22. Í divorced him which was the hardest thing I have ever done. I made his decision for him. Watching him love the OW for 2 years was complete torture for me. He claims he was the victim when in reality I was the victim, but really is my own fault for trying to hold on to him. I was not the perfect wife, but I can say I never lied or cheated on him. All I can say is I hope he finds happiness. It’s been a week now and he has left the state and moved in with the OW and her kids. I will always love the once honest, loving, caring man he used to be. But now he’s not the same. I had to save myself. I allowed him to knock me down and I know now there’s nothing I did wrong, it really wasn’t my fault, it was him. I love him so much that I just want him to be happy. It’s been 2 years of hell and I’m still not over it but time will eventually heal all. What I’m trying to say here is just I wish he would have been honest with me because 22 years of trust and respect is gone and he will never get it back from me. The ultimate betrayal of a cheating spouse is very hurtfull. I know he never wanted to hurt me and in the end devestated me worse than words can say. I don’t think that’s how he meant for it to be. All I can say is I wasted 2 years trying to figure out what was wrong with him and all along he knew what was wrong and didn’t have the courage to tell me the truth. I love him as much as the day he asked me to marry him, but I have no trust in anything he has to say to me because once a liar always a liar. Shoe on the other foot if it was you being deceived wouldn’t you want someone to be honest with you? There’s going to be pain but there’s no reason to make it the worse pain ever. I hope the best for all of you and for my ex I will be a better person and start the forgiving process so I can get over this and on with my life. I know I’m a great person and life has a great plan in store for me once I can finally figure out how to love again.

  23. Anonymous

    They truth, I guess, from reading all of these is that you might love one and then love what the other one is giving, not the person himself/herself.
    It appears selfish. Just choose one and don’t try to grab with both hands. What kind of love cheats?.

  24. Anonymous

    Your problems are not strictly the fact you fall for another and want another relationship.
    Your problems are that you cannot be honest about that fact with yourself and your partners. The hurt is from the lies, betrayal and disrespect.
    Some of you will of course be liars and disrespectful to your partners because ultimately you do not love your original partners with a proper open, deep, committed and unconditional true love. However, some of you do yet find yourself falling for another amazing person too and yet do not stop being on love with your original partner or spouse. You people are polyamorous! You just do not understand what this is and because you are so societal conditioned by monogamy and because your partner will be also you lie and cheat to be with that other person.
    As you don’t know how else you can since you’re told that it’s wrong. It’s not! What is wrong for you is monogamy. Wake up. Maybe you’ve been in this situation quite a few times. Again, the only wrong is you lying and the deceiving yourself and your loved ones. Stop and be true, be transparent, be open and be honest. People are not things and you do not own them!
    Read some books like “more than two” or “opening up a guide to creating and sustaining open relationships” to understand yourselves more.
    I personally suffered in a monogamous relationship for years yet would never cheat on them yet fell for others and had non sexual relationships with them. Then my mono partner cheated on me because they had low self esteem and other issue. I even said to my mono partner this was fine and that if they loved this other person I am happy to welcome them into out relationship if they wished and it was honest from that point. They said no (they never accepted my being poly and didn’t believe in it) they said they were sorry and they only wanted me. Then they cheated again later and I said no more. My next partner I went into the relationship honest from the start about my being poly and it has been the best relationship I’ve ever had and the strongest. They are not poly but thy accept me as me and they know that I love them unconditionally and fully openly and honestly about everything. They also Return that love to me. We’ve been together now two years and it’s been perfect and like a dream. It’s nice to finally not have to be what I am not. I have even had another relationship that lasted 5 months during the second year of us being together which we all worked together well in as a “V”.
    Stop letting yourselves suffer and making others suffer if you are not monogamous. Yes, monogamy is real and exists and it is no better than poly type relationships… But if you are not practising what is true to you in your relationships then you will forever be miserable and cause these problems.

  25. Anonymous

    I am a young man who has strayed (yes I am at fault and I hate myself for it), but one thing here not really covered is a man’s pathological need for sex. I want it all the time and will experiment with different things.

    The sex with my girlfriend is amazing and so passionate. She truly wants me and I feel like such a man when I’m inside her.

    My wife is generally a bit unwell and therefore never wants sex and her drive is less than zero. Until she gets better, I can’t see her spreading her legs any time soon. Therefore I feel I have no way out. I need sex and to deny it will only make it worse.

    Prostitutes perhaps? No ties?

    My g/f is also pregnant with her ex’s baby AFTER CPS removed the other kids from her because he put her in intensive care. I am petrified she will go back to him if I don’t see her anymore. This could end up in her dead or never having custody of the kids again. And no, it’s not all jealousy, but I care for her so much that I don’t want anything bad to happen to her.

    Now I’ve developed feelings for her and I think I’m fucked. I have been thinking about suicide as I can’t bear to be without my g/f and I will break my wife’s heart and she has been also talking about taking sleeping/pain pills “to never wake up” as she is so sick of being unwell.


  26. Anonymous

    @ 57, I meant I don’t want a life where I am NOT being true to anyone or anything.
    and I was 20 and he was 21 – we dated for almost three years.
    (Sorry for the typos)

  27. Anonymous

    I am 40. I was deeply, madly in love with a boy when I was 20 and 21. My parents did not agree to the relationship. Since we were not ready to elope, we both moved to different towns, in the hope that our parents will come around. We had a long distance relationship. Those were the days of snail mail and expensive long distance phone calls. At an unfortunate point, he did not receive my letters and I did not receive his. We ‘thought’ it was over. Heartbroken, I got married to someone else when I was 27 and my BF got married a few months after that (both married complete strangers as part of an arranged marriage system). I never got over my BF. I was never in love with my husband. I had been pining for my lover all these 20 years. Yes, my husband and I have become great buddies, but I have never been able to see him as a lover. A few months back I bumped into my boyfriend. What a day it was! Right out of a movie scene. We exchanged numbers got texting. We spoke about everything that had happened when we were away from each other and realised that we lost out on each other only because of a communication gap. While my parents destroyed some of his cards/letters when I was away, I too gave gave away some of the stuff I had retained because it was hurting me too much. But my boyfriend has kept every scrap of paper I’d ever given him. That much is the love he has for me. I can’t even begin to explain the kind of love I have for him. I have a daughter and he has two. I have always been wanting to leave my husband (even before my BF came back) because I am not happy. I now want to leave him all the more. But I know my BF will never be able to leave his family. If I leave my family, my BF will be hurt.
    If I ever had one dream in my life it was to be with my BF. I know have him so close to me, yet so far.
    I don’t want anyone to judge me because only I know what I am going through. Sometimes, I just feel like leaving both of them and going away somewhere far away but I think of my daughter. I don’t want a life where I am being true to anyone or anything.

  28. Anonymous

    Does anyone give a shit about the kids involved?…you’re selfish and destructive….9 times out of 10 your behavior and the reasons why their world gets ripped apart cannot be hidden….people need to grow up, fix things if at all possible and honor their commitments in marriage and in other arenas…life can be hard, put your big boy/big girl boots on it handle it like an adult with some integrity…think about your children.

  29. Anonymous

    I don’t know what to think about all of this, I’m the OW, I’ve been married also for the past 8 years. I loved him in the beginning, but little by little, the love was decreasing, I know we both are guilty, I thanked him for helped me raise my two girls, 13 and 11. However the price I have been paying is way too high. We have a dysfunctional marriage; since the beginning he showed me he didn’t love me enough, but I did love him, showing every time I could, to the point that one day he said, “I KNOW YOU LOVE ME, BUT YOU DON’T HAVE TO TELL ME EVERY5 MINUTES,” 🙁 that was painful for a wife who was expecting love from her husband. There were also some issues with his temper, he is an alcoholic and diabetic, so his sex drives is low. I accepted all of this and don’t get me wrong, I’m not perfect at all. He loves my 11 but he can’t stand with my 13 year old girl, calling her names, insulting the both of us without remorse now. Before at least he apologized, now not even “I’m sorry.”
    I met my lover 10 months ago, he never promised anything, me neither, he has been married for 32 years and his wife is like my husband, weed abuser as well as on antidepressants. Her sex drive is also low as well. She found out about us 2 months ago. Even though his children are adults already he is scared of the divorce thing, his excuse is divorce would be painful, financially and emotionally.
    He said he loves me, yes of course, as I love pinot noir. I don’t see him taking the big step. I deserve to be insulted by his wife. But just to clarify something to everybody, having an affair is a human thing we are not the only ones, cheating is not just having another person. We cheated at work, if you are 100% honest, tell me then how perfect are you

  30. Anonymous

    This is me. I’m the other women, sadly. And sadly enough I can’t let go. 19 months. He got caught by a text message two weeks ago and has been living in a hotel for the past two weeks. Telling me what he thinks i need to hear. Telling her what she needs to hear. Yet living in a hotel and not telling either of us its over. She doesn’t know how the details, but she believes it was a one time thing. This is a daily relationship. I worked with him AND his wife. Until the text two weeks ago. I’m still in disbelief. He still goes to dinner with me and goes to work with her. I can only guess how hard it is to lead two lives ad yet run a business. I am still not sure if it is me he wants or her. Or if he is just waiting for one of us to say were done, so he will know which direction he is going. So in this and I know better.

  31. Anonymous

    The majority of these post blow me away! The main theme I see in most post is compromise and total narcissism. In between the lines is complete justification for what they need to do. It’s all about being “happy”and oh, those needs! Apparently most of you are not religious in anyway. If you knew from the foundation of the Bible that committing adultery is a sin, and the results of it are devastation beyond measure for the family that has been abandoned, you would not do it. Everyone of you who venture outside of your marriage to find another person are fooling yourselves if you think that it’s okay to have another lover while married. The consequences of infidelity for the family can sometimes result in ruining their lives forever. The scars that are left never leave and sometimes they remain open wounds and never even become a scar. The bottom line is this, if you want to venture off into an affair, then divorce your spouse! If you want to venture off into an affair because you have several reasons as to why your marriage isn’t working, divorce your spouse and then go have your affair. The last option is this, go to your spouse and be completely honest about everything that bothers you and man up and go to counseling and work at it with every fiber of your being. You see, the problem is this, people think that because they are not getting the right type of sex or their marriage has become lifeless, then they have to seek something outside the marriage. This is outer self gratification and by no means repairs anything!! Deceit, lies, self-serving, sex outside of marriage, destroying every hero of a child, causes horrific damage to other people. So, divorce! Don’t drag innocent people through your narcissistic life! Let’s face it, the most anyone is going to live to be is 100. I for one, don’t want egg on my face when either this world ends or I die. You are all fools to think that you can live like this and it’s culturally okay, because so many people do it. What happened back in the 1950s and before, when the divorce rate was 1%. People stuck it out and worked it out, they didn’t back out! You’re probably thinking, you’re the scorned spouse. Obviously! A seven year affair with a married woman and a small child, and a child myself. My biggest crime, I was sick for a period of time, and he went looking. She was looking for a big fish, and she found one! This is her third one and I doubt she will stay with him as time goes on as she’s 10 years younger. And let me give you a word of warning, those who are thinking of leaving their spouse and worried about their children, worry! My child tried to commit suicide the first day. Not only did I have to take in the fact that I was being left on the eve of my 25th anniversary, but I had to fight for my child’s life! We went through the process of of counseling and support, but the scar still remain! My daughter’s life is forever changed as how she will look at a man. Her comment to her father is, “you were my hero and I will never look at a man the same way again!” She has unsuccessful relationships with boyfriends even though she’s gorgeous. She has no way to measure men and no trust. Her self-esteem is at an all-time low. To add insult to injury, the older woman berated me throughout the process as she was going to have my husband no matter what, she had waited seven years! I equate her to a wolf whose teeth were in a pork chop and she was not going to let go. There was a time my husband came home and said he wanted me back and was willing to do anything, but she kept it up with the love letters, the calls, texts, and within four days he had to go back. It was just too hard for him to go through counseling and face the music. Yes, there is music. You can’t have an affair for any length of time and then just waltz back into the relationship and everything’s A-OK. But I must tell you, you’re probably wondering.. I thought we were in the best time of our lives even though I was sick before this leaving many years ago. We were dating, kissing, making love, going to the movies, etc. . But he was home a lot less over last few years as his business increased. He got up earlier in the morning. He had told me when he came home, how hard it was to live this life, it was a burden and he was finally unloading it and he was free. He failed to see he piled the entire load on myself and my daughter. He was still living at home, of course, but eventually had to leave as double wives and double lives won’t work. You see, even though I didn’t know about the affair, I knew something was wrong. My husband began to drink more, see less of me and say he was busy at work, I had every right to believe he was busy as I knew the business he was in. The little time we did spend with me, I said black and he said white and we bickered. Is a proven fact that the spouse will always get the leftovers and be treated unfairly at times, but I always did my best and looked my best. Many people think that I am 40 years old, I have a beautiful figure, and have been asked out 1000 times.. The other woman represents fun, affection, agreement with everything you want, gets all the nice cards, taking little trips, and of course, she’s usually younger and more vibrant and everything you can never measure up to. Typically , the man who cheats is looking at porn prior to the affair and is thinking of all the things he can do with this other woman, while his wife is busy mopping floors, taking care of children, and in my case I was ill, but at the same time looking like a million bucks, him telling me he couldn’t get enough of me! As my daughter said to my spouse when he revealed his affair, “why did you not leave mom seven years ago?” Still, her words ring true as seven years of my life were stolen and at that time I was a younger woman and could’ve started over. Not that I can’t now, but because of the stress of being left, the rejection, my own illness worsened. Him trying to take everything from me financially, because he needs it all for his girlfriend and his life. Even through prayer and support and counseling, I still feel like I have the life sucked out of me. Initially many people feel sorry for me, but over time he redeemed himself and the story became different; instead of a seven affair, it was a one night stand and then developed into something. The other equally painful blow was that his entire family cut me off. Not my nieces and nephews, but all the four siblings and spouses. They had been poisoned by what he told them about me to build a case and bring in another woman and just maybe felt he needed a soul mate. OMG! It was a combination of the shame of what he had done and wanting to keep that quiet, along with him being blood in the need to protect their dear brother. I had a big dear family, now I have no family as mine are long gone. In counseling, I read this can happen with prideful families, along with losing our mutual friends. Everybody loves my husband’s jokes, good looks, friendliness, status in the business world, and yet no one really knew him. As I said, if first many were shocked and friendly, but as time went on well, we just must except him for what he is and he still has all his relationships. Utter humiliation on my part and the part of my child.. Here I am in my mid-50s trying to start relationships all over again. Here I am in my mid-50s having an income that I had when I was in my 20s. And everyone thinks there are no consequences. The other woman started the affair when her son was six and although a teenager now, his father is still in a custody battle for his child. He does not want his child to live with two adulterers. My husband would never have cared for another man’s son and does not. The other woman, saw her son about four times a year in the two years prior to the affair being revealed. She was too busy. Now she is trying to rekindle the relationship and fighting for partial custody, which of course give her alimony! I could go on, but be certain of this, when you are the one that has been lied to, deceived, hurt, there are no excuses! Taking off your ring and entering the bed of another person while you’re married is not ok and shame on anyone who does it. Do your spouse a favor, divorce them or let the other person completely go, and first go out and work on the marriage yourself through counseling and then invite your spouse in. You may end up losing both people, yes! But that’s the measure of a man. Do the right thing because it’s the right thing to do. Stop convincing yourselves that this is all okay. In conclusion, let me add one morsel of what happened to me through all this. I became anorexic as they tooled around town as if nothing happened and my spouse continue to blame me for unzipping his pants and seeing another woman for seven years.. If you know anything about anorexia it is not a choice not to eat. My depression was so great, I didn’t eat. I looked like a holocaust victim. As I neared the end, about to die, my doctor turned my sickly body to the mirror and said to me you will be on a marble slab within four weeks, fight for your child! He gave me a plan and I started it right away and eventually I started to gain some weight back, although I still fight it. Pull up your zippers guys and drop down your dresses girls! Be sure, your sin will catch up with you and in the wake of your narcissism you will destroy lives, lives of people you want cared about, or your own flesh and blood.

  32. Anonymous

    To #51:
    Yeah, of course. We’ve entered a generation where people only think about themselves. As long as it’s in the pursuit of “happiness,” then the expense in which those around them will suffer is disregarded.
    Consequences are completely discarded, and love has been so twisted in the sense that it can be used as an excuse to justify breaking the hearts of those who loved you dearly – it’s not just a feeling, but also an action.
    There’s another organ that helps you process that more thoroughly, one that we fail to utilize nowadays. You all know, that organ in your head that helps you make rational decisions when your heart is unsure? Maybe try exhausting every option in rejuvenating your current relationship before using the last resort in starting a new one.
    As for the unmet needs theory, isn’t that a two-way street? For those of you who are a “cheating” partner, starved of affection and intimacy, have you thought that maybe your betrayed partner may want the same needs, may crave the same needs as you do? For all you know, they may want as much affection, love, and intimacy as you do.
    I commend those who recognize the hurt and damage that your outside relationships are causing you and those around you, and wish you the best of luck in deciding what you really want.
    As for those who are not remorseful or will call me out on my self-righteous, moral high horse – fine. I tower over you on a tall white stallion with a large flag in hand that lists the consequences and broken hearts that you fail to consider. I will be one of those who will hold that flag for you until you really look at it.

  33. Anonymous

    Read all the posts here all I can hear is…
    Me me me…very selfish

  34. Anonymous

    I am the OW, typical cliche, fell in love with my older boss that claimed to be in an unhappy relationship. This went on for 3 years until we were eventually caught by his wife. The guilt was awful and she contacted me numerous times asking for details of the affair, all of which I responded with lies as I felt it would be too painful for her to know the truth. Its been 6 months since they broke up and we have still been seeing each other daily, despite me leaving the company, and meeting up for sex. He tells me that his wife is still not over the break up and wants to get back with him as she doesn’t know that he is now with me. I don’t trust that its completely over as I know that he is too weak to tell her that he no longer wants her. I know that I need to step back now and let him go but i just can’t bare to be without him and watch him resume his happy family life. Its literally eating me up at the moment but I don’t know how to cope. Confirmation from anyone that I need to tell him to back off and move on with my life?

  35. Anonymous

    I’ve been married for 27 years but the last year’s sexless. I live my husband very much but living without sexless was hell. We fought over this a lot unail I found someone and started having an affair.
    The feeling of being wanted, desired, is amazing and after you have been rejected for years it feels better.
    I started going to therapy and my husband reasons for no have inet rest in se are physicals. I love my husband but I can’t let go the feeling good of having someone who want you and makes feel sexys and wanted.
    My affair is not going to end in us being together. We are both married and he is from a diferentes religion. This won’t have a happy ending.
    I love my husband, father of my two boys and partner of life but the sex is important and he can’t provide it.
    My lover is you younger than me.7 yeras. My husband is 9 years my senior.
    What should I do? I’m 50 year old and I know it won’t be easy to find someone, sex etc.,…
    Should I live my husband…I won’t be with my lover…I’m his only family. We have two wonderful boys. I want their kids to have grandparents, family etc.
    Totally confused and don’t know what to do.

  36. Anonymous

    In the United States, how much harder is it for a man, than a woman, to choose between a spouse and a lover?

    Society has taught that a man is responsible for providing for and protecting his family. When a man’s needs are not being met by his spouse, he naturally will get them provided for by another woman who is more than willing to meet them. This works as a drug bringing confusion and feelings of love. Now this man has to face a real dilemma, stay with this unsatisfying spouse, or move on with this amazing other woman.

    The man chooses to divorce his wife and two kids to be with this other married woman. This other married woman chooses to divorce her husband. She also has two kids.

    The man looses his house, pays child support, spousal support, and gets every other weekend to see his kids. Now due to the societal pressures that are upon men, he feels guilty and decides to give all assets to his wife. She gladly takes them all and promises to make his life a living hell for leaving her in the first place.

    The other woman that divorced her husband gets custody of the kids, the house, child support, and most of the assets. Now She can’t understand why her new lover is not happy. She got to keep her family and replace the one problem she was unhappy with; her husband. Why wouldn’t he be as happy as her in his new arrangement?

    Meanwhile, the Man is feeling like going back to his wife because he has nothing. He’s miserable and misses his kids. His kids hate him for leaving them, because they hardly get to see him. Of course they have every other weekend, but they have already been convinced by mom that they should never, ever accept the other woman and should never even want to meet her.

    Now the man feels he has no other choice but to break things off with his girlfriend and try to unite with his horrible ex. If he doesn’t, his kids lives might be ruined psychologically. His girlfriend cannot believe he would even consider going back to this abusive person that used to be his spouse! Of course the girlfriend is only concerned about her wants and what is best for her. Now the man is stuck between trying to do what is best for his kids and trying to please the girlfriend that meets all of his needs.

    Once again, the Man is the bad guy! Enough said.

  37. Anonymous

    I really do believe that love doesn’t have any boundaries , its just that we as humans has been programmed in such a way to think there is such thing as limits to love . Although I 100% feel and do believe deceit and cheating is very bad , esp if both are being misled thinking they’re the only ones in that persons life . But more and more I’ve come to learn that its the guilt that eats the person alive from within if he/she is purely saying I LOVE YOU , just to throw it out and keep the ball in the relationship rolling . The real question really comes down to ,what happens when you do truly love both ? Who says there is a limit that only one person can be loved ? loving your friend , does that mean you can only love one of your friends and not the other ? your parents does that mean you love one of your parents and not the other ? no we love them both and we love them all (UNCONDITIONAL LOVE) as stated , but where was the guidelines set or the rules made that unconditional love is gone when it comes to your partner ? I am not saying cheating is right , this is completely coming from a unbiased standpoint . To our society polygamy is shamed upon , but in the middle east its practiced like normal almost like its part of their culture . If there are both sides POLYGAMY & MONOGAMY , who is to say one is right and the other is wrong if both are standing from two different points of view ?



  38. Anonymous

    Well I am torn between 2 men!! I am a 50 year old woman who has been in a turbulent marriage for 32 years! 18 months ago I became friends with a gentleman
    , we slowly became close friends then lovers! My husband and I separated and the OM and I started to plan our life! The OM had applied for a job in a hospital in Australia which he got, so we planned to go to Aussie and rent until my house was sold!! Well now the OM has gone to Aussie and I got cold feet, I had a meeting with my husband and he said he still loves me and would like to us to hold on to any love we have for each other and give it a go!!! I still have feelings for my husband but I don’t think it’s enough…. I’m still in contact everyday with OM who I love dearly…he has been in his new job for 2 weeks now… He has found an appartment for us to move into and is looking forward to the day I join him….. I am feeling so torn it’s making me feel ill….. I’m getting chest pains from all the Anxiety from the situation .
    My husband and I seem to get on ok but I am constantly thinking about OM and the life we had planned… I keep changing my mind I can’t seem to make a decision and stick to it….. I admire #25 in coming to a decision and sticking with it!!!
    My affair with OM is out in the open and I have a lot of people who now think the worst of me!! I have even left my job ( which I was going to do anyway to go to Aussie!!! )
    I think I am just afraid of the unknown…… It’s awful as my husband thinks we are trying to rekindle things…but I am constantly in contact via text to OM……
    There’s some issues I have with OM like chronic snoring that totally keeps me awake!!! And he smokes quite heavy and I don’t !!
    I’m totally confused my mind swings like a pendulum from day to day!!!!!!

  39. Anonymous

    I have read all the posts. I have also been the betrayed wife and the OW. I am now single and have been involved with a married man for about one year. I have known him for many years and we went from friends to lovers. We have shared through the years our most private thoughts. I guess we were having an emotional affair for years until it became a full blown affair. I have experienced being “in love” again. This year has been full of intense moments of passion and happiness but on the other hand I have felt insecure and lonely and guilty. We have ended it a few times just to return again. But I’m tired of being the OW. I’m tired of spending holidays alone. I’m tired of hiding our relationship. So I’ve decided to stop all contact with me. I asked him not to come to see me. I have blocked his calls and texts. I need to let him go because he needs to decide. I feel that both his wife and I are victims. I hope this is the end of this dilemma.

  40. Anonymous

    I have my husband of 8 years and and my lover 7 months and he is also married but does not live with his wife I am still married to my husband which I love but I also love my lover. Which I’m 2 months along with my lovers baby .. Which my husband want me to give up and come back to him because he think that my lover is nothing but trouble I have 3 children with my husband .. I don’t know to do I love them both very much I don’t know if it hard for me to give up or what happen need advise …

  41. Anonymous

    I am in a similar situation, too. Mid -50s and I never “cheated” in my life. With my female partner of 15 years. Love her dearly – like family, but a new business , added financial strain and my working 60+ hours /week added so much more tension to the already daily grind of life. She became unhappy with me, critical, and I felt like she was about to jump ship. I understand why – she was not living the life she wanted. She was being deprived of our relationship. At work another woman and I became close – she too going through relationship problems – though it was a much shorter-term relationship, and as she has told me, she was never really in-love with this person, but after having been left after a 2 decade long relationship where she also raised her partner’s child, she thinks she became involved with her current (now ex-) because she needed stablity, companionship and was lonely. This person never felt like the love of her life. She just resigned herself to the fact that she was now middle aged and would just settle rather than be alone. We fell in love and had an affair which both of our partners discovered. I don;t know what I thought would happen. I wasn’t thinking of all of the ramifications. I thought we would get it out of our system and them go back to our respective partners.

    My partner moved out of our home. We still live nearby and work nearby. She cannot stand the OW and the OW is threatened by her. So I live a secret life. I mis my ex so terribly at times, yet the thought of ending my relationship with the OW is also painful. I feel guilty and depressed all the time. I don’t want to lose either of them in my life, and I don’t want to cause my ex any more pain . The deceit has become an unbearable weight because I know how much pain I will cause both of them So I try to bear it all on my own shoulders. This has been going on for 2 1/2 years now and I am feeling like I am at the breaking point. THe OW had become seriously ill for a year and could not work. I tried to take care of her. She is struggling financially and is afraid to lose me. I am not doing great financially either. My ex has been incredibly kind and supportive but if she know of the OW it would just be awful. She constantly tells me she cares and would like to spend time with me. I feel like I am in limbo and being in this state is making me severely depressed. I wish I could turn back the clock and have my old life back. I would rather bear all the pain than put it on either of them, but I am teetering on the edge of a breakdown. I have tried to make a decision but to no avail. I am stuck. I wish there were an easy answer. I agree I made my bed and now must lie in it. But I was never a disloyal person nor one to not be able to make decisions. I feel awful about myself.

    Can anyone please give some advice?

  42. Anonymous

    I am the wife of a man who cheated on me, we have 4 kids and another on the way. For me his affair has destroyed my self esteem. I fell in love with this man instantly when we met and I can’t imagine my life without him. We are trying to put this all behind us but in counseling he has revealed that he has true feelings for this OW. How does one move on from that. How can a man who took vows to you and tells you they love you all the time possibly love someone else. I am praying its an infatuation. Honestly they don’t have the every day struggles to deal with so their relationship is easy and fun ours is work but rewarding. I really want our marriage to work I want our kids to grow up with mommy and daddy in the same home and above it all I still love him I have tried to hate him and I just can’t do it. For any man or woman who thinks its ok to be the OW or OM think about what you are doing to the kids in the marriage to the persons spouse. The OW in this is telling my husband that my kids will be happier that is so far from the truth that I am selfish she is poisoning my husband against me and it breaks my heart before they met we really did have a great marriage filled with lots of love, and everything anyone could want. I am heartbroken. It has been since October 31st that he told her that it was over and I’m just praying that over time he realizes he didn’t love her that our love is true.

  43. Anonymous

    Well #25… My eyes are open… but i am weak! I try to make a choice… And to move forward…. I honestly believe I could be happy with either man…. But I love them each too much to end it with them… So my torture continues… It is so complexed… So many reasons why it began… Why It should end…. Why I should stay or why I should go…. This is my hell. I created it. My punishment for my sins.

  44. Anonymous

    To the above posts that think it is ok to cheat, lie , deceive, and embellish the most hurtful feelings onto their spouse or loved one in the name of the “junior high” love feelings are absolutely despicable human beings- the key word here being ” human”. Yes, we all make mistakes, however wisdom belongs to the person/ people that own their mistakes and truly learn from them and don’t make the same mistakes twice! Now back to those “junior high” in love feelings of an affair- that is exactly what they are- not mature

  45. Anonymous

    #25 – you opened my eyes. You are very mature for a 23 yrs old. I’d be curious to know how you solved your pb since I’m facing the same pr.

  46. Anonymous

    I have been with my wife for 23 years, since I was 16. We grew up together experienced life as young adults and were inseperable. We have moved through life as you are ‘supposed’ to. House, 2 kids etc.. and again suffered the ups and downs life throws at you. But we got through it. 3 years ago I met a girl in a bar although I had known for a long time. We got talking, kissed and due to the amount that was drunk, I took her back to my mates house and we had sex. I then continued this affair. Mainly by text, but did have sex a couple times more. This texting eventually got so frequent, inevitably I got caught. My wife was devestated. I couldn’t bring myself to tell her id had sex, as we had both only had sex with each other upto that point. So I cut this girl off and my wife took me back. Things were ok, but a year or so ago things started to go wrong. Arguing and fighting and general disrespect for each other started to happen. So a few months after the arguing started I met another girl in a bar. This girl was a stranger and I really tried to not be interested. My mates were more so. But drinking and dancing and sexual chemistry kinda took over and once again I kissed this girl. We exchanged numbers and I went home. No sex this time. We started a text relationship. She was telling me how amazing I was, she was exciting and dangerous. My wife was not interested in me, constantly in a bad mood and telling me how useless I was. So this went on for months, being honest this girl really did hurt me sometimes. Had a couple of other guys that she slept with but wasn’t bothered about hurting me because I was married and still sleeping with my wife. Why shouldn’t she sleep with other people. It still hurt me though and she knew it. So 4 months ago she went out one night and at midnight, while she was drunk she phoned me. My wife was sat next to me and that was it. I’d been caught out again. This time why wife was livid and threw me out. She made it clear that our marriage was over this time. I moved in with my Mum and carried on seeing the girl I had been texting. I had fallen in love with her and couldnt stop. We had been texting every day since we met. Although we had never had sex, we had strong feelings for each other and we couldn’t stop. I felt as my marriage was over it might be worth trying to be with this girl. It’s been a very fiery relationship. With us both finding it difficult to trust each other. So 2 months ago my wife told me she had forgiven me and she would have me back. I didn’t know what to do. I tried to give up this girl but couldn’t and in fact ended up having sex for the first time with her. So now I have my wife wanting me and this girl wanting me. I have fallen madly in love with her but I still love my wife. My problem is. If I tell my wife it’s properly over I will lose everything I have built up. My house, my car, my boat. I will have no money and this girl only has a part time job do her income will not help. I also dont know how I feel about my wife seeing other guys. She has never had sex with anyone else. I can’t even think about her sleeping with another guy. It makes me feel sick. But my new girlfriend can’t cope with the fact I haven’t finished it completely with my wife and is threatening to leave me. So I have to choose. The safety and security of my loving wife. Or the insecurity of a new girlfriend who I am madly in love with and excites me so much. I really am stuck for what to do.. I need to make a decision and I am finding it impossible to choose. Any help anyone?

  47. Anonymous

    To all: when you feel intensely drawn towards someone, go towards it. it may end in tragedy, or it may end in bliss, or you may have an interesting time and then part ways..but you are being pulled towards them for a reason. Stop feeling guilt about your feelings people. Trust them! Stop being brainwashed by outdated societal structures.

    Why people even believe in marriage is so beyond me. Marriage, historically, was never about love. It was about property and wealth exchange. Love was never an expected outcome of marriage, until very recently. People: you are deluding yourselves! Don’t let your life be dictated by outdated moral structures. Every persons experience with love and relationship is unique. Just follow your heart!

  48. Anonymous

    I was with my partner for 12 years. When we met there were no sparks, no love connection just companionship. In fact I didn’t chase her and wasn’t enamoured and she wasn’t either. It was like convenience. I went away for 6 months and when I came back she was there knocking on my door. She had a young boy William whom was 3 and I raised to now 17. We also had 2 girls. I love my girls from the bottom of my heart and miss them dearly. I feel like death. During my relationship it was so much hard work every year. I just loved my kids and had a family and it went do quick, but as time passed there were things I couldn’t stop. She spoke terribly to me in frOnt of our kids, she was lazy and didn’t care much about anything. As time went on I knew I wasn’t in love, despite our family being so beautiful I didn’t respect her, the way she spoke to me, as a mother and her ethics. I left her after much heartache and anguish. For 4 years we fought, every time I wasn’t coming back I couldn’t see my kids, I couldn’t talk to anyone, she stopped contributing altogether financially a few times and basically spoke horribly about me to my girls and son. After 4 years I now see none of my kids, they don’t speak to me at all. I met someone and couldn’t even let them know for fear of this happening. It happened anyway. My girls are 9 & 12. I know I won’t be in their lives anymore because they have been estranged by my x to me. It is heart breaking I am a good loving dad with a lot to offer them but my x is so mean and nasty. She always has been. I an going to marry for the first time in my life, I am going to have a child hopefully and I am never giving up on my girls. I am 40 now and ready trot the next chapter in my life. Help me heal so I survive

  49. Anonymous

    I have a bf ive been with.for 5 1/2 yrs. We were suppose to get married, have kids the whole enchilada. However 10 months ago my good friend of 15 yrs which of whom ive always liked in a romantic way due to our common interests and passions… We began a slow growing affair. It took months for him to actually tell me how he really felt for me and when he did my heart exploded with happiness. He views me as his bestfriend, lover, companion and one who.he would marry. I feel the same. My bf and I have been.through lots of stuff. I still love him deeply and thats no lie. However our relationship is full of heartships and saddnes at times. I know if I.concentrate on my bf we could be ok . But I love my bestfriend too. I almost feel him and I are made in a sense for eachother. My bf is broken from my two feet out the door and one arm in actions. I love him and the thought of life without him sickens me. I know my bestfriend would help get me through this no doubt, but is it worth the risk? My heart cant even answer this for me. I know me I know when I can make life changes but I cant here with either one 🙁

  50. Anonymous

    Wow – all these posts describe the feelings I have, being in love with my husband and my lover. The choice I am faced with is do I end the affair or not?
    I am so conflicted, I absolutely love my lover and can’t bear the thought of being without him although I fear I will ruin my marriage and his if I continue..
    I am so sad and so conflicted. It is at least a little comforting to know that many others are in the same situation….

  51. Anonymous

    Im married for 7 years now with my first boyfriend, I’m also his first gilfriend.
    About 3 years ago I started to feel something was missing. I feel I changed as person these years.
    I was a very timid and inexperient girl, now Im more true to myself and feel that need more of life.
    He is a good man, honest, hard working guy. But we don’t have much in common except our tender for each other and I always feel he is completly distant from our relashionship, he dont like to talk about emotions, he can’t stand to see me cry or if I try to talk our relashionship he always tells me Im crasy inventing problems were there are none. Even being really agressive by the fact Im sad and in need of something that aparently he dont know what is or how to give me.
    Well, from this time I started to think seriously about divorce but could never find courage to do it.
    I’m always affraid of hurting him, cause I know he want to continued married to me. And for everybody we are the perfect couple.
    I decided to try a time appart to know how I feel,to know if I could survive a divorce.
    In this time appart, I discovered yes I could live my life without him and I also got involved with another man. One that have a lot in common with me, I really feel happy around him and feel that I can talk and be trully myself, but he is not perfect as well and have his defects, one of these defects is not being very stable man in his emotions and life.
    He lives in another country and now I got back to my old life and partner.
    Now I feel like I dont belong to none of the places.. I love my husband but I know is the same person with the same problems that I was feeling tired of.. but he is safe and take cares of me even we are not really connected as couple should be.
    The other man lives far away and wants me to divorce and live with him. But he is the “unknow”, I would have to leave everything behind for him and I’m terrified!
    (Im not dating him now, he is far and he expect me to divorce to continue, Im also not interested in having 2 men at the same time, I want to resolve my life, or I stay married or I divorce)
    The point is:
    Do I love my previous partner? Do I love this another man? I’m having dificult to answer this.. Who I love? Because I’m petrified by guilt and fear.
    I don’t know what to do.. Who to choose.. And I feel really bad about this, cause my husband was the only man I had in my life, i didnt had a comparision.. Now I have and Im sure that many things are missing in our marriage.. So why Im so affraid to let go? And to be truth to myself and to both of men involved?
    So.. I dont judge anybody who have affairs, obviously there is something wrong in marriage, I know this because many times I keep my happy face for society and my husband while inside Im dying, just because I know there is nothing else to do.. i got tired of fighting, and trying to talk, in time I just decided to live and let things happen..
    One thing is for sure, feelings change, u can’t control love, who you love. So to the betrayed people that read me, forgive your spose, Im sure they love you still. But love as should exist btw men and women is gone.
    Getting out of a long marriage is like loosing a part of yourself, that’s why I can understant why people are cheating.. is not easy to loose a part of yourself, of your life, even is so clear to people outside to say: is over, divorce and find someone new.. people try to cling to what once existed.. but their hearts never betray them.. we can’t stop love from happening, and this includes lovers.

  52. Anonymous

    #22, well said. I fell in love with a woman at work. My wife had become “dull” to me. i tried to get her to do some things with me, but we vary on what we enjoy. When i ran out of house projects, i ran out of excuses to stay and pretend to be happy. i have a daughter, best ever. but thats not enough – not since i met this OW. shame on me for opening the door, but ive never ever felt love like this before. my dream woman, girl of my dreams. but im scared to choose. i feel i am walking a line and on either side of it is pain and suffering, because i am weak to choose. that line is now on a mountain. i tried to give my marriage another chance, a pitiful month when things were somewhat decent. and in that month, i got my wife pregnant. shes now 2 monhts pregnant. but i am still so torn when i know the right thing to do is to stay but then i lose this girl of my dreams. i’ve loved many. been with many. but not like this. she is so amazing. Its been a year working side by side with her, then in the car, in the hotel, wherever we can go, concerts events, everything we do we both love so much….so torn, waiting for the shoe to drop. do i give it all up. my child (and fetus), my house, my friends, my family to be with this girl i dont want to ever be apart from? so torn. i want to die. i want to bleed out and not exist, so i dont hurt my family or my new love. i just want to disappear. but i cannot, will not take that exit. i am so lost, i feel the weight of the world on my shoulders. a ticking time bomb in my pocket. tick tock.

  53. Anonymous

    I can also attest that loving two women is a blessing yet a curse (re #22). Being stuck in this ambivalence is a gut wrenching daily onus. I strongly recommend to anyone who is on the cusp of engaging in an affair or in the beginning stages of an affair, to please stop a moment and reflect upon the following sentences before you resume. If you have any love for your current spouse then you will also fall into this trap of agony that duplicity will inflict upon you as your new affair develops and as you become in love with this other woman. If you do not love your spouse enough to achieve/maintain emotional intimacy in your current relationship, then at least love her enough to let her go before you engage in your new relationship. Man up before it is too late, lest you imprison yourself as #22 and I have done. (if you are a female, then transpose the pronouns/nouns to reflect the respective gender – this advice applies to you as well)

    P.S. If you find this concept of loving two women compulsive and unnatural, you must have a reality check. Monogamy is NOT natural; yet I concede (and attest) that it is the most emotionally healthy approach.

  54. Anonymous

    I also love 2 men my husband of 22 years that I left to be with my married lover of 2 years .he left his wife for me. I have been back and forth of 7 months they both love me very much and I hate hurting them both and my self .I just don’t know what to do or who to be with .when iam with one I miss the other one so much I truly feels like my hart is crushed .I never thought you could love 2 men so deeply at the same time .I have no idea which wa to turn .

  55. Anonymous

    I have read all of the 28 prior posts and comments and am saddened at the harsh judgments of some. I do not think or believe that any of us has much if any control over who, how, or when we fall in love. The older I get the less I believe in “the one” and I have questioned if in fact there is just one person who is intended or even capable of fulfilling all of the needs we each have. My situation: my first marriage ended after 12 years with my husband having multiple affairs and indiscretions, sexual additions, and inappopriate relationships with teenage girls. I was devstated, betrayed and nearly destroyed. Several years post recovering from that trauma, I married a wonderful man. I never intended to marry again but eventually conceded to his wishes to marry (he had never been married and did not have or want children)but a life partnership for him meant marriage and nothing short would suffice. He even adopted my two daughters who are both now grown and on their own. Fast forward 11 years…intimacy (emotional and physical) and passion have been lacking in this marriage from the beginning although we love each other, have a great partnership (business-like relationship), and live and work well together in all ways short of true intimacy. Enter the other man (OM). He is 11 years older than me, married with 1 child in the last year of high school. By self-report his marriage is much like mine in that they have a great partnership and financial stability but lack passion and share no intimacy (emotional or physical). OM and I have been involved on boards and other business-related projects and got to know eachother well over the course of a year before becoming involved. We have now been involved for 6 months. Neither of us has plans to or has even entertained leaving our marraiges. Interestingly and perhaps bewildering to me is that I do not feel any guilt about this relationship. Don’t get me wrong – if my husband were to discover the affair – I would be sad at the prospect of his hurt, but even considering that I have not felt any guilt. My husband has been unwilling to address the lack of intimacy and passion or to address the health issues that he believes are part of the issue for him. This complacency has left areas of need in me that I can not bear to think of living without for the rest of my life. To my way of thinking and feeling – his refusal to address these issues within the marriage is no different than my choosing now to address them outside of the marriage. I do not want my marraige to end – there are many good things my relationship with my husband provides. But I also can not live without true intimacy and passion in my life. I am now in love with the OM…I am still in love with my husband. It will be interesting to see what the future holds.

  56. Anonymous

    I believe there is nothing wrong if for some reason a partner maintains relation with some one else too, provided he or she can keep his or her primary relation intact and allow no erosion . The side kick in most cases works like supplementary vitamins to strengthen oneself both physically and mentally. The person becomes more creative and his or her bodily abilities gets augmented. But please make sure that you do not get conceived by the other guy and do not import disease. Under no circumstances you should divulge your secret relationship to any other surely not to your primary partner. This should be treated as your bathroom fantasy which you never relate to your partner . Please do not make your relation too obvious . Make it very specific to your partner that you are deeply concerned with your primary relation only. The side kick is accepted with no string attached. It could be a deep love too, and in that case it is more better because the lover partner will understand it more passionately. A true lover knows that he or she should give and not take.

  57. Anonymous

    Wow wow wow #22… I know exactly how you feel. And to agree with the post above, it is almost a glorious dilemma. I wish you wouldn’t be so hard on yourself. You love two women. It happens and it is not strange. I am a middle-aged woman and in love with a man who loves me and his wife of 30 years. It seems we have all settled into this concept. I think especially at our age, life changes, spouse’s health impacts relationships, and in the end, people still have the need for love and intimacy yet feel obligated to care for their primary relationship. That is my situation. And i have a great deal of respect for his caregiving.

    I wish you love and peace. You seem like a wonderful man.

  58. Anonymous

    To #22…Beautifully spoken, truer than anything else on this page about being in love with two people at the same time. It’s terribly complex, heart-rending and completely possible. A friend called my situation (married 8 yrs to my 2nd husband; first marriage lasted 18 years, and have been with lover for the past 9 mos and in love w/ both men) a “glorious dilemma.” Bull…there is nothing glorious about it. It is the most wrenching experience I’ve ever had, worse than the hell of enduring a chronic illness for 10 years. I recovered from that; not sure how, when or if I will “recover” from this. I feel torn to make a choice but I can’t. I hate hurting anyone else, but I’m hurting all the time. To #25: Thanks so much for Dante’s quote. All of my life I’ve been decisive. I’ve never had trouble making decisions. I’m direct and know what I want — until now. But that quote rings so true: indecision is pure hell, and living in ambiguity, failing to and fearing to make a choice, is torture. You’ve given me food for thought. Thanks again.

  59. Anonymous

    22: Wow, if you write a book your children’s pockets will be thankful! Very dramatic, that’s life.

    I’m still very young (23) and I’m in a situation in which I have one girlfriend (2 years now) who really loves me, is very very loyal and caring, yet the relationship dissatisfies me for reasons that escape “reason” or “common sense”, let’s just say, the magic disappeared and I am not truly “in love”. Some people have an amazing way of going on even though, a form of “stability” and that can give comfort and security. But let’s face it – we are men, we are hunters and the hunt thrills us. We can’t be domesticated and somehow I think the feeling of being able to spark an animalistic and passionate relationship is one of the most satisfying sensations that we can go through in life.

    The truly hard part for me is, to break up with the first girlfriend. This is what you consider makes you a “coward”, not that my situation is nearly as complicated as yours is, but I feel somehow identified by your story in this situation.

    But if there is one thing I can learn from what you are saying, and from what Dante Alighieri wrote in his book: the last ring of hell is for the undecided. And I think this is very true. Living in ambiguity, not knowing what to do, fearing the “what if’s” is the main reason we live in hell, an internal hell, a deep hell, in our hearts and minds.

    So I am going to make a decision once and for all. I decide to be a man and stand up for my decisions no matter the circumstances that they take me toward, and to live by that principle with no regrets, only to learn from my mistakes and fine tune my decision making as I go on.

    Thank you all for sharing these experiences. Especially Mr. 22, you have opened my eyes.

  60. Anonymous

    Don’t Blame God….

  61. Anonymous

    Wow..very well said.

  62. Anonymous

    I am almost 67 years old and should be finished with all fo this by now. I have read all the preceding stories and still feel my story is different. I married young, but I loved my wife and we did everything together, and I was proud of her and our relationship. I never even considered going out for a drink after work or flirting at work because I was married and in love. I was a virgin when we got married, except for the normal pawing. We were great in the sack, loved to sleep late together, go out togather, take trips…you name it. However, in my 19th year of a near perfect marriage, I met a woman and felt the first real true love without even trying. I didn’t know what to do, I just knew I couldn’t do without her. It wasn’t her looks…but, the personality and relationship, and the bond we immediately formed. We both fought it. But, my wife and her boyfriend made it even easier because my wife fully trusted me and never had a reason not to before. I didn’t know what to do…yes…I knew right from wrong, but no matter how this lady and I tried, we could not break the bond and our relationship.
    I continued to treat my wife perfectly, But, I could no longer allow myself to have sex with her. It just seemed wrong. By the 19th year, we were not that involved in sex anyway. I didn’t miss it and I didn’t look for it.
    I admitted the affair soon after it started and agreed to break it off. The OW even got married and tried to forget me. My wife and I did all we could to improve our marriage…except for the intamacy, which was difficult under the circumstances. The OW couldn’t stand being without me and divorced her husband. I felt very guilty about that…and so did she. I really do care for my wife and I am a dumbass and coward for not being able to make a decision. I did attempt to leave once and my wife threatened suicide. Nothing worked and I resumed my relationship with the OW, ended up back together. I could have admitted in the beginning that the sex was fantastic with the OW. How could it not be with us being so in love with each other. I did my best to cope with a double relationship. I practically died throughout the week until I was able to see her on the weekends. We both knew it was wrong and I was always honest with her, and she knew that. We went through good times and bad times. I worked so hard at not hurting my wife that I don’t believe she suspected the relationship was still going on. My relationship (with the OW lasted 12 years). By that time I’ll admit the OW and myself were almost looking for excuses to break it off…it hurt so bad. She finally made the move and it nearly destroyed me. I will admit that I really care for my wife, but I was truly in love with the OW and considered all the wrong things. I lost track of the OW for 15 years. Earlier this week I asked to talk to my wife. I told her how much she meant to me and how lucky I was to have her and that I wished I was all the things that she deserved in a husband. I told her I would try to do better, even though our realationship was a good one, due to her love for me and my loving responsibility for her. Frankly, I don’t think I could do without her.
    All of a sudden, almost by accident I hit apon a facebook identity for the OW…after 15 years. I was shocked (I could have always done an investigation on her whereabout, etc., but never did.) I couldn’t resist asking her to be accepted as her friend and she accepted. That was a week ago, or one day after I professed my devotion to my marital relationship.
    The OW answered and within a day we had professed our love for one anther again. I realize there is a difference between loving someone and being in love with someone. As close as they may be…there is a difference. I can never leave my wife…I am a coward to face her and I care too much about her. Yet, after 26 years I find that I can’t even think of this OW without needing a psychiatrist. I am that in love and don’t know how to deal with it. Don’t tell me I must make a decision, or I am hurting both women, or I can never be happy…I have already been told that by professionals. The best answer is a bullet in my head, but the only problem that really solves is my own. I have an obligation, love and responsibility to both women. Don’t everyone try to make something silly out of that. That feeling is in my soul and mind and heart. A bullet would really only solve my problem…and they would just end up feeling guilty..and they have nothing to feel guilty about. My wife loves me and the OW loves me and cares very much about my wife’s feelings. It is not as simple as leave my wife or call it off with the OW. Tell me that and I’ll punch you right in your jaw. If you don’t realize the complexity of my situation, then go read someone else’s blog. I am in a place where there is no happiness for me…yes, me. I am a good and caring person, possibly too caring. And, there is no answer. God hasn’t helped. 15 years after a decision is made, he brings her back into my life. Please don’t think any thing less of this OW…because if she wasn’t as good a person as she is, I would probably be married to her right now. she has spent all these years looking out for both my interests and my wifes. I think God has already tested us once…why would he do it again? Anyone that thinks this is a simple matter is crazy…forget the comments. Anyone that thinks I am a coward…forget it…I already know that. I feel like I am screwing up two of the finest lady’s lives in the world. And, even with, and mostly because of two loves..my life is shit! And, so is theirs probably. I have already tried God…and the fact is…he put us back together for the second time. Nobody deserves this kind of test…and yet I know many people have lives so much worse than me…so, now i even feel more guilty…are you happy God

  63. Anonymous

    #13 Didn’t know anyone could be so smart! Doesn’t look as though your success rate is to great. You have a huge hole in your character. You want to talk statistics? Look at the percentage rate of success spouses have with their lovers when they leave their marriage partner for them. Look at the statistics of how this affects kids. It’s easier to fix a marriage than to start new with someone else. Did you know that? As far as guilt – You should be riddled with it! The other woman may fall short in many areas but believe me – SHE IS NOT THE WEAK ONE – YOU & AND HER HUSBAND ARE!

  64. Anonymous

    I’m the single 26 year old having an affair with a man who I adore. I know he’ll leave his wife (whether I will still be around is another matter) – but I desperately want to be happy and loved.

  65. Anonymous

    Normally nobody is totally innocent when it comes to affairs. I have been cheated on; I have cheated and I have been the other person. In all cases there was blame aplenty to go around. In my current situation my spouse has placed me at the bottom of her list of priorities. She has withdrawn both emotional and physical intimacy; often as ‘punishment’. When told her how I felt, and that things needed to change for the good of our marriage she told me that I would just have to get used to it. I guess I was just supposed to suffer silently.

  66. Anonymous

    I have been married for 7 and half yrs, and have been having an affair for 5 yrs with my husbands best mate, I have no guilt about our affair because i do believe if it makes us both happy what do we have to be guilty about, with my lover it is still as exciting as it was when we began, i love this guy and have never felt this way about anyone else, my husband and i have no intamicy whatsoever and to tell the truth i cant remember when we kissed each other last or had sex’s, where as my lover makes me feel alive, when im down he pick me up, its not just great sex’s it an conection we have with each other and i do believe we were ment for each other but under the circumstance that he and my husband are best mates their will never be anything more than an affair, if it had ended after a few months i would have said it was just a fling but considering it has lasted 5 yrs and still the butterflys are their everytime i belive its love and what does it matter my husband has no idea and never will so no harm done, im happy my lovers happy all is good

  67. Anonymous

    I am married and having an affair with a single man. At the begining it was amazing and emotional and felt like love but it has since become more chemistry and i find myself wanting so desperately for that “in love” like stage to return but don’t think it will. When we are together, spending time together, no intimacy involved or intimate it is wonderful but when I leave I feel needy and insecure about how he feels. I can’t stand that feeling….. My marriage ended for me emotionally when my husband had a year long affair with his college girlfriend while I was home with a new baby. I tried very hard after that to repair the relationship, took ownership and felt like I failed him someway but then he did it again. He also has a pornography issue. I checked out emotionally on him years ago…. He is very intimidating and frightning and a divorce will be the battle of a lifetime with him….. and he will use the kids…. I want to do what is best for them but am I doomed to never love or be loved again….

  68. Anonymous

    I have just broken up an affair, but not for long as it’s only for us to get some work done and to cool it down a bit. It has mostly been by text though whe we meet the sex, conversation and everything else is amazing. We both have been in long term relationships which have been a mess and very unfulfilling and fractious; I have broken with mine and am living happily alone and told my ex of the new person… though the man I am seeing has children and is in conflict about that, his partner is abusive and controlling. For him to stay in his relationship where there is arguments, sometimes alcohol fuelled and an atmosphere were he can do no right and she is bullying (this is not just coming from him)is something that is not healthy. I pray that he has the strength to pull out and keep a healthy contact with his kids. Meanwhile all I can say is there are no stereotypes for affairs… circumstances differ. Don’t judge.

  69. Anonymous

    Dang, super long responses written in small fonts makes for pretty difficult late-night reading on a heavy topic. I ask myself often why there isn’t some amazing blog devoted to this topic. Having an affair and breaking up with my partner was the worst time of my life. The guilt for feeling so happy with someone else and the shame for being so deceitful was unbearable at times. As someone who has had an affair, and still madly in love with that person after almost seven years, I was seeking some affirmation as to WHY our relationship is working so well. It seems like it should be doomed from the beginning. After all, it was founded on deceit and lies and intense attraction. To further burden this relationship, we both come from bicultural backgrounds and none of these four cultures share much in common. I have two children and he is down and out. From the outside, this relationship must seem destined for failure. We have had some really difficult, even dark times, but the last year has been the best ever. The only reasons I can come up with that we are still going strong and looking forward to a long life together is that we are so attracted to one another, and we are able to communicate very well. I can tell him anything, and he me. Good luck everyone.

  70. Anonymous

    I have a long distance lover,we love eachother so much but I’m afraid,I can’t explain it,I’m scared,I don’t know what my fear is! it’s stupid! is it stupid? just leave a reply and give me your comments

  71. Anonymous

    This is such an emotive subject.

    I have been an OW several times two affairs of several years with the same man. I have never gone out to get a married man, my self esteem isn’t low. My soul mate is the man I love and have had two affairs with, just because he has chosen to stay with his partner doesnt mean that he is not in love with me. He stays with her because he has a lot of finances tied up in their life and she is very insecure and would struggle to cope alone. She kept him after our affairs for the same reasons.
    I don’t want to hurt her, but she is not my concern. I totally agree with the original writing, he may not be living with me, but the way I see it he will never ever be able to look at her in the same light again. She is the weak one because she can’t let go, whereas he is the strong one as he has chosen to stay and look after her.
    Most betrayed women and men will never ever feel they have been at fault, and fair enough thats their choice. Some relationships just don’t last. Unfortunately the society we live in doesn’t always allow us just to pull the plug and move out as financial considerations can be massive.
    It’s not about begging your wife or husband for something extra, sometimes that person is just not able to give emotionally or physically in a way which fulfills their partner. If they can’t give their partner what he or she wants and they don’t want him or her to go elsewhere, then they should just walk away.
    Men who have affairs aren’t monsters and women who are the other women are not either. I think by the way that divorce for first time marriages is higher than 50% funnily enough subsequent marriages with ‘first loves’ have a very high chance of sucess!
    Hope you all find some happiness in your lives instead of trying to throw guilt around…

  72. Anonymous

    I am in a 7 year long relationship and also i have a long distance lover. I struggle to maintain these relationships. I have been with my distance lover and we are so well connected on so many levels. I am finding it hard to concentrate on my 7 year relationship i still love this man but i feel more of myself with the other man. He is married and neither of us were seeking a relationship. I now find myself having to choose between them. This is so hard i feel so many feelings for my current partner but as each day goes my l love for my lover grows deeper. It is possible to love two people with so much emotion at the same time.
    My past is filled with making everyone else happy but my ‘lover’ concentrates on me being happy and encourages me to think about me and to make myself happy to some this is easy for me its the hardest thing to accomplish. I hate the thought of hurting someone i want to protect them both.
    I agree with anon September 13th 2009

  73. Anonymous


  74. Anonymous


    This goes out to all you males or females that have a ‘cheating’ partner: This is real information here but YOU HAVE TO OPEN YOUR EARS and LISTEN, otherwise I might as well currently, right now, be talking to a tree or even the ground! So at least please be fair and rational as you read this, yes? My History: I am the married guy that found himself in an affair with a single woman, starting about three years ago. My wife and I have been married for over eight years and three years ago I found myself in the company of a pretty female that immediately felt like someone I’ve known for years. I am a very good looking guy and have always had girls and women flirt with me.. I’ve never had a problem with finding the right kind of charm that women seem to be attracted to. Sometimes its just too easy.. Well this pretty female (I’ll say “PF” for name’s sake) and I got along really well immediately after we met and from all the women I’ve met while being married, not one came close to comparing with PF.. not even close. Well believe it or not, I’m the type of guy that didn’t have sex until I met my life soul mate, my wife, and in our eight years of marriage, not one girl, not even one, was able to cause me to fall for her. My wife is THAT BEAUTIFUL.. The greatest girl on earth. Well in any case, after I met this other pretty and WONDERFUL female and, I got along with her so well that we immediately felt we had known each other very well before somewhere.. I would say we knew each other in a past life, but I really do not believe in past lives, sorry. At first my wife didn’t know anything about our affair and I treated PF like just a friend when the three of us were together. Eventually my wife became ‘aware’ and the cat was out of the bag not too soon after. At first she was devastated and we had some very hard and serious times. I was still very much in love with my wife but also felt such great love for PF that I JUST COULD NOT give either up. I TRIED REALLY HARD to stop seeing PF and then kept trying to stop seeing her so hard that I actually became sick and started losing weight because I was so heartbroken and sad. My heart ached with stinging pain for these two women and I would have these horrible nights finding any sleep or comfort.. My wife and PF are these creatures that came into my life and I felt DEAD inside without being able to have both. My wife at first didnt accept the new situation.. she was outraged and COMPLETELY hurt beyond anything.. I had put her through pure grief and there were many times when I almost lost her. I poured my heart out to her and told her EVERYTHING.. not just what happened but EVERY LITTLE feeling that I found inside me.. I put in all on the table for her to see. That didnt work.. she was even more outraged! My wife was hurt for months.. PF and I even stopped having sex and would just kiss and hug… And I told my wife that she has every right to divorce me and that I would give her the house and literally EVERYTHING.. and that I would never fight her in court. I also expressed deeply that I would never be the same without her, even if PF and I got married. I made it clear to my wife that I understand I will never be able to redeem myself in her eyes and told her that I will always know that I screwed up big time and that she was perfect.. that I’ve always felt such great love from her and that she has always been there for me and given me way more than I could ever come close to giving her. After many months more my wife came to me one day with tears in her eyes and started apologizing and sobbing, saying she was sorry over and over again. I was besides myself! She explained that she never realized how much I loved PF and how she finally understood that for me to give up PF would be like not having my her, my wife! She explained how she didnt see how the connection I had to PF was like the one I had with her, and for me to not have PF is like not having my wife anymore.. how her and PF are now one to me. We talked so much about everything.. sometimes just my wife and I, other times PF and me, and as well many more times the three of us sit out in the back yard and talk our heads off. With the three of us together we now have an advantage over many couples.. even though I would hold against freely recommending everyone try it: IT IS SO HARD AT FIRST, WITH MANY RISKS OF LOSING BOTH.. BUT SO WORTH IT IF THE THREE OF YOU SEE EACH OTHER AS ONE. We combine our income and are able to cover so much more ground in all general areas of life.. there is always someone there and we share our responsibilities in a way that gives us a lot more time and freedom to live life and have great happy moments loving each other. My wife and PF are straight and generally do not find pleasure in each other unless its for me. We usually make love in separate bedrooms and I always MAKE SURE to please both NO MATTER WHAT… this means a orgasm for both, not just quitting half way. Its extra work sometimes but just as well.. I’m speechless… ITS THE GREATEST THING IN THE WORLD!!!! I did make a mistake that day, three years ago.. I betrayed my wife and all her trust in me and put her through hell.. complete hell! But my wife is the greatest in girl in the world and even though I still don’t deserve her, I am fortunate enough to be able to say she REALLY REALLY LOVES ME… and not just loves me… loves me UNCONDITIONAL!! See? The love our society has is CONDITIONAL. Humans are not meant to have orgies and wild times sleeping around.. they should choose a partner for life (sex) and realize what the actual words “..FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE” mean. Today, for most, love is not unconditional and today’s love says: “I LOVE YOU.. But you BETTER only love me or else I wont love you anymore!” Yes, people should not break apart families.. people should have respect and utter love for their soul mate or partner! But if your soul mate or partner DOES MESS UP.. aren’t you already in the process of breaking up the family and in that fog of anger.. where’s the utter love.. the unconditional love? For most.. that love is long gone and not even a trace can sometimes be found! This is the true test of LOVE.. if YOU REALLY want to know if your guy or girl is really even yours in the first place.. in situations like that you have to set them free. If they return to you, they were always yours but if they don’t, they were never yours in the first place. Love is greater than anger or hate.. Unconditional love will heal even the devastated places and bring solidness to broken bridges that could have otherwise never been able to stand the weight of the hurt that anger and hate is going to pass through there. I don’t belong to ANY religion.. no offense meant but religion silly, but I do believe in a creator who takes care of the things we need.. a creator that gave us EVERYTHING we need, and even puts it in our hands! Not all things always work out.. just as some couples break up because they lose interest in each other BUT NEVER CHEAT, yet other will break up because one of them cheated and the other can’t get over it.. IT HAPPENS, we are HUMANS: People love people and sometimes even two! Who says that not right? WHO? You ancestors? Your momma and pappa? What is the norm? Why? Just because in THIS TIME, IN THIS DAY, we as a society MAKE IT THE NORM to say, “you must only be in love with one!”? Who made that rule? Not nature.. We have programmed ourselves with a system that is set for failure and is the REASON why 50% of marriages end in divorce and why MOST couples break up.. it’s that moment where one of them meets another person.. and they happen to ‘love’ that person simply because they find a deeper meaning.. it that moment where this ‘love’ system fails and why most couples are feeling misery. This is not a way to say its okay, go have all the sex you want with just anyone that tickles you.. everyone does that. This is about finding out that your lover has another lover.. and finding out that your lover is in love with someone else – either way, work on it or move on and cut your loss.. but anger and hate will never bring back what you had and neither will constant resentment. My wife tells me now that HER LOVE brought me back. I LOOOOOOVE MY WIFE SO MUCH…

  75. Anonymous

    I agree with Anonymous’s post on 9/13. I listened to everyone around me and lost my lover – the love of my life. I understand what you are feeling and you have to do what is right for you. Everyone likes to judge. Because of my affair, I basically lost my family, my lover, and my husband. I hope I can cope, but sometimes I don’t know. I don’t regret the affair, I only regret that I let my husband hold on to me for so long. You need to do what is right for you. I wish you luck.

  76. Anonymous

    I am married and I am the OW. I have been having an affair for 9 months now. I struggle with it everyday, my need for it and at the same time the pain it causes me. I love my husband and have been married for over 20 yrs, but I am in love with my lover… with him I feel that I can truly be myself. I feel that I am accepted for who I am and not who everyone else wants and expects me to be. As for those here who say that we do it because we lack self-esteem— I would have to disagree, nothing takes more courage than to seek and pursue something that you want, need and deserve. Why do we stay? For me three reasons, my children, the commitment I made and the dissapointment I know I would cause my family.

  77. Anonymous

    As the OW I was pursued by the married man. He professed over and over how unhappy he was…she was “just a Mom”. He was telling her he wanted to leave when she turned it on him as desertion. Called in the kids for an intervention and bullied him to return. She professes God will cure their marriage. In their 30 years he had multiple relationships outside of their “happy home”. Trust me wives you are often only there because of money and guilt. Once you say “I Love You” to someone else your marriage is over. What you live from that day forward is forever different and not better. Healing from an affair is a fallacy perpetrated by pycho babble. Your marriage is over. You become the keeper of the cage key and nothing more. I have been on both sides of this and I can truly speak to this issue. As painful as it is divorce and moving on is the truly honest thing to do. Staying with the marriage is merely a sign of weakness. One can make themselves believe anything but the truth is your marriage is gone. In it’s place is only what you wish it could be not what it is….grow up and face the fact….your home was not happy and most likely still is not. You just are being told what you shamed him into to saying. Like a POW who gives in to his captors so the beatings will stop. Staying in your marriages is only submission not love and healing.

  78. Anonymous

    I am the betrayed spouse who wrote about the sappy love notes. I have thought about exactly the point made by the person who criticized me for being critical of this behavior. This is something my husband and I have talked about as well, in recent weeks, and we’ve also been doing a lot of reading about relationships and the needs of husbands and wives. I’ve asked him if this is the kind of communication he wants to have with me, and his response was very clearly and decisively “no”. My husband doesn’t have a problem expressing love for me, and knowing someone for 28 years, you do get a good understanding of the type of communication that’s truly expressive of their personality. There’s the expression of romantic and/or mature love that reflects deep love, commitment, and mutual respect, and then there’s the expression of what comes off as immature, infatuated, and contrived. He has told me that it was fun and light-hearted at first, but became tiresome over time. That type of communication and the demands of the relationship itself became a stressful burden; nevertheless, it offered the reciprocation of admiration and attention that he craved, so he was in constant conflict about giving it up or continuing with the relationship.

    Also, I disagree about the man not having to “keep the other woman happy”. I think that when the husband starts to sense or be told by the other woman that she is expecting more, he does his best to play along and keep her feeling like he’s commited to the relationship without actually making a commitment to the relationship. If he doesn’t, he might fear that she could take drastic measures like blowing their cover and making sure his wife finds out or someone else who can put him in the situation of having to make a decision one way or the other.

  79. Anonymous

    To the post above…

    I am going to approach this as if you are the OW or OM. Now, to say that this betrayed spouse did not allow her husband to be sappy and write love letters to her is not fair. I am a betrayed spouse, and I supplied all of the necessary ingredients for a healthy love and sex life. The fault lies with my husband. He has self esteem issues as do many men in this situation. He was the one that decided to prescribe to another way of getting his kicks..if you will allow me to say that. My husband and I have shared nearly 22 years of good sex and sappy behavior. Then, when my husband decided to listen to this social predator, the OW in this case, he began to find fault with everything that I did. When you have a loving marriage for this many years, it tends to progress beyond the lovey dovey stage to a deeper level. You share things that no one else is privy to. The daily grind of life can be a damper on any relationship, but when that happens, it’s up to the parties involved to call a discussion to the table and express their grief. My husband didn’t do that…instead, he decided to step out of the marriage and buy the package that this woman, who was my dear friend, was selling. As the betrayed spouse above said, he started to act like a teenager in love. It is disgusting to see this kind of behavior in a mature adult. What she means to say is that it is hurtful that her husband can spend so much energy on a woman that means very little to him in the big scheme of things. Instead of turning to her, he turned to the OW. Now, if the husband turns to his wife and tells her what he needs, more than likely, the wife is more than willing to give her husband what he needs. To try to justify an affair by blaming the wife is shameful. The married affair partner and the OW/OM knows exactly what they are doing when they engage in an affair. It is, to say the least, irresponsible and immature. It is easy for you to judge the betrayed spouse. It’s easier to throw the blame at someone else. I don’t judge the OW, I judge the married affair partner and the OW/OM. Have the guts to own what you do.

  80. Anonymous

    “Some of the information I’ve learned about my husband’s affair was literally nauseating. It was peppered with childish, sickeningly sappy love notes, and things that I know he would never want to keep up in a long term relationship. He said he only did those things “to keep her happy”.

    Has it ever occurred to you that maybe he did those things because that is part of who he really is and he was never comfortable with sharing that side of himself with you? I say this because men in affairs are the ones who for the most part have all of the power so they don’t have to keep the other woman happy. She’s usually the one running around trying to keep HIM interested. So basically if he did do those “nauseating things” then most likely he did them because he wanted to because he DEFINITELY didn’t HAVE TO.

    I say this because it’s evident what you think about love letters (as it stands you called it “sappy”) so chances are that he knew that if he tried to do these things with you, your reaction would be exactly what it is in this comment section- minimizing and condescending. That’s why he did it with her. She allowed him to do something he wasn’t allowed to express with you. If he told you otherwise, he said it so that it didn’t make a bad situation between the two of you any worse.

    That’s just something to think about as you repair your relationship or if you ever get into a new one. No one deserves to be cheated on but if you’re willing to dole out advice to the “other women”, just remember that HEwent to her so you may need to get just as much advice in finding out what she was doing right as well.

  81. Anonymous

    I completely agree with this article. As someone who has been on both sides of this issue, the statement that the affair devalues your spouse is accurate. When you enter into a secret relationship, you are automatically relegating your spouse to a less worthy, less valuable role in your life. As the relationship continues over more and more time, the primary partner becomes less and less valuable in the mind of the person having the affair. You really do need to 1)give up the ridiculous fantasy world you’ve gotten yourself into, and 2) go back and address the issues that caused things to deteriorate from your original loving and respectful relationship with your spouse. Some of the information I’ve learned about my husband’s affair was literally nauseating. It was peppered with childish, sickeningly sappy love notes, and things that I know he would never want to keep up in a long term relationship. He said he only did those things “to keep her happy”. The entire time, he was stressed and thought many times of ending it with her, but by that time, was afraid of the reaction from the other woman (afraid of a scene). You are absolutely not living reality with this affair partner. If you have a stagnant marriage, what have you contributed to make it that way, and what’s going to prevent this new person from becoming less than satisfactory once she has to deal with the realities of life? You’re only seeing the ideal side of her now. She’s not letting you see any of her faults or flaws, and they’re easy to hide when you’re living in a fantasy world.

  82. Anonymous

    Read “Not Just Friends” by Shirley Glass Ph.D. You will see yourself mirrored in the pages. Your statement here is text book. Please get this book and try to fix your marriage or man-up and leave your wife before things get worse.

    I am a betrayed spouse that went through hell because my husband wouldn’t man-up. He abused me mentally, emotionally and finally physically because he could not continue to live a double life and I confronted him with proof. I understand now that this affair had everything to do with him and his lack of self esteem and very little to do with me. Please…get a copy of that book and read it cover to cover, then make a decision. It would be better for all parties involved.

  83. Anonymous

    What are the chances of this new partner actually being something better – it certainly feels like it after 5 months. I feel like I have a much stronger emotional connectin with her – easier to talk to and certainly more excitement.

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