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Separated Wife Having An Emotional Affair


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Old 6th February 2008, 10:07 AM   #1
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Separated Wife Having An Emotional Affair

Well, here goes. My first post, but I'm trying to get as much advice and help on this as possible. My wife separated from me several months ago. At first, she explained that she simply needed some time apart, and that there was no one else. Soon thereafter, it came to my attention that there was indeed someone else - a younger man she works with (she's mid 40's, he's late 20's). She insists that their relationship has never been physical - that she's never even spoken her inner feelings to this guy, and he has not said anything to her. But there's no mistaking their interest in each other. Rumors at work, spending extra time with each other after work related parties, etc.

My wife has tried to be totally honest with me, telling me things that I'm sure very few wives would tell their husbands. How she feels about him, that she fantasizes about him, what she would like to do with him, etc. As hurtful as that sounds, I've asked her to be honest and she has, although I'm sure there are details she's leaving out to protect my feelings.

She is very stubborn and rebellious, and would not take an ultimatum well. So instead of insisting that she do or not do anything, I've told her how I would feel if certain things happened, i.e. any form of sex with him equals divorce for us. She says that she would never sleep with him, but wants to kiss him. I've replied that should that kiss ever take place, her reaction - slamming the brakes on the EA or not - will determine our future together.

Here's the hard part: I have no doubt that she loves me. She has insisted all along that she knows she wants to eventually come back to me. So why is she leading this other guy on? Mid life crisis, definitely. But the EA has been going on for a long time now, about 6 months. And she is a very successful and attractive woman, who could have almost any man she wanted. I've given her plenty of attention, sex between us is great, and she has no doubt about my love for her. So apparently there is something more profound going on here.

During Christmas, there was a dramatic episode between them (a late night road trip) that resulted in my wife fearing for her job, for losing me, and our kid's reaction. She insists that nothing happened, and naive as it sounds I believe her. She's a decent, loving person who would be too racked with guilt to not admit something like that. She got away with it, though. No trouble at work, I'm still here, and the kids still love her even though they now know about the OM. She was sure that this event made her 'hit the wall', but now things are actually progressing with them - they're spending more time together, and he's becoming a bit more forward in his feelings for her. She just can't bring herself to not be around him, or to talk to him either about her feelings for him or about breaking it off for the sake of her marriage. I recently caught her in a lie about their time together, and decided to stop dating her. Although we'd been dating every three weeks or so, I feel that she was having her cake and eating it too, so to speak. So far, she seems to be very affected by this new plan. We'll see how it goes.

So here I am, taking all the standard advice of trying to take care of myself, get on with my life, and wait to see what happens. Is there anything more I can do? I'm beginning to wonder if the damage has already been done, or if her stopping short of a PA will save our marriage. She's worried that if she comes back to me and we eventually go to a work related function, that I'd say or do something out of line with the OM. I've told her that if things ended just like they are now, that I would be fine because the OM has done nothing disrespectful to me. It's all about her - he's only taking advantage of the time that she's allowing him to have with her. According to her, he has been a perfect gentleman so far, so I can't blame him for anything. But that window of opportunity is wearing thin, and these are crucial times ahead for us. This will be a telling month, in that there are several events (Valentine's Day, her birthday, etc.) that I won't be there for. I have to stick to my guns on this total separation thing. I think it's the only chance of getting an honest conclusion from all of this.

Obviously, there is much more detail than I've stated here. If you have any questions, I'll fill you in. Otherwise, any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 6th February 2008, 10:53 AM   #2
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I went through something similar. Although, our ages were within 5 years of each other.

Never went to PA, but wow, what EA has on a person.

I have asked H for a divorce, separation, etc. and he thinks it can still work. I don't see how. The emotional neglect our marriage has withstand is too much for me to go on.

I want to experience happiness, intimacy and other men and to do so, I am willing to separate from my husband and not sneak around. It's not fair to anyone.

What have you done for your wife in the past 5 years? Are you nurturing? Kind, unselfish? Do you help with the house, kids and other stuff other than your job?

Something brought her to him. Usually out of neglect for affection/adoration/attention and appreciation. Figure out what she has not gotten in the past several years and this will help you to figure out how to proceed if you want her back.

I believe that if a woman is satisfied at home - she will not look or take advances from other men. Only the frustrated and neglected will respond to other men's advances.
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Old 6th February 2008, 11:08 AM   #3
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Why do you think she hasn't already have a PA with him?

Was her connection with this guy the cause of the separation? It sounds like that is why she wanted her space. I am in a similar situation although it would have been impossible for my STBXW to have had a PA - the guy was inside (I know, ridiculous!). I filed for divorce and put the house on the market. I don't regret doing it. If she is the type of person to have inappropriate relationships with other men whilst married to you, even when this guy is out of the picture, she is likely to do it again, with someone else. I don't think it is love when they do that. It is a mixture of lust and infatuation. It doesn't matter what a nice husband or how brilliant your sex life was with her, she wants more. They become insatiable and insane. I am talking from experience here. Even if you start the divorce, right now she won't be phased by it. She is still in the fog and probably can't think of anything beyond her overwhelming desire to be with this guy. You need to let her do her thing. She has gone for now. She will probably come back. I hope that you will tell her where to go.

Take care

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Old 6th February 2008, 11:16 AM   #4
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Thanks, Blue. The answer to your question is that I'm considered to be very nurturing, kind, and unselfish. By almost anyone's standards (including my wife's), I am regarded as a great husband and father. That's just it - there doesn't seem to be anything in particular that I'm doing or have done wrong. My wife has commented many times that she's very impressed with my handling of this current situation, and her respect for me has risen tenfold. She has let me off the guilt hook by telling me that if she can't be married to me, she can't be married to anyone.

And that's apparently what this is all about - whether or not she wants to be married at all. Opening up the possibility for another relationship is just part of not being married, right? It could be that she just needs her feeling validated by the OM. But as I said before, it seems like much more than that at this point. She's dying to know exactly how he feels about her. She doesn't know what she would do if he tried to kiss her or opened up emotionally to her. She says that she 'probably' would call things off at that point, but isn't positive.

The lines between the reasons why she left - seeing if she would rather be single and the EA - are getting fuzzy. I'm not so sure that the OM is simply a symptom. And that's why I have no choice but to give her a chance to figure it out on her own, without the pressure of having to report back to me. As the expression goes, "If you love someone, set them free..."
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Old 6th February 2008, 11:21 AM   #5
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Why are you putting up with this? She wants to eventually get physical with this guy and she might have already. Tell her to give it up or you will file for divorce. If she chooses to keep him be glad to get rid of her.
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Old 6th February 2008, 11:28 AM   #6
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Of course there's always a possibility that a PA could be happening, but I honestly don't think so. We've discussed that, and have agreed that should her EA ever become physical in any way she would tell me. She knows what that would involve, which is my filing for divorce. You're right - I could never forgive her for that, and would never trust her again. But this is a genuinely good person, one who does not intend to harm, but rather just can't seem to stop the EA in spite of knowing that it is very unlikely that they would have a long term relationship. She'd be throwing everything away with me on a fling, and knows she'd live to regret it.

She has told me that if I insisted she move back home that she would. She does not want to lose me. But obviously I can't insist that she return because it will not solve the problem. She has to get over this guy on her own, and/or decide which is more important to her.
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Old 6th February 2008, 11:32 AM   #7
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She can stop her affair. If she is incapable of controlling her actions then she needs professional help and maybe that is something she should look into but don't accept her tired excuses. If you put your foot down either she will respect you for it and come back or she will run off this man but either way you will have piece of mind. Right now you are letting her play you for a sucker.
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Old 6th February 2008, 11:35 AM   #8
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Zuzu - I had an EA and it never got physical. I wanted it to but never did anything about it. Wanting and doing, especially to a woman, are two different things. In some cases, an EA is more overpowering than a PA. Only she knows whats in her heart.

As for you, try as hard as you could. The worst that can happen is that you said you did everything in your power to make it work. Then you will have no regrets and be able to move on if divorce is in the cards.

As by your self description, if it does end in divorce, you will not be alone for too long. Many women would give up everything to find a good man. If you are what you say you are, you have no fears and should do everything you can to nurture yourself.
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Old 6th February 2008, 11:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Eyed Brain View Post
The worst that can happen is that you said you did everything in your power to make it work. Then you will have no regrets and be able to move on if divorce is in the cards.
Amen to that! That's exactly how I feel. And yes, an EA can much more devastating than a PA. At least with a PA it's a quick death if you want to move on. This is slower, but I'm not convinced that it's death yet.
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Old 6th February 2008, 11:48 AM   #10
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Zuzu - you are a kind man, but does she appreciate it

I know it must be hard for your wife, but in the grand scheme of things, she has a loving husband and a family. How would she have felt if the shoe were on the other foot? Would she have been as understanding as you have been? I think what you are doing is highly selfless and commendable. Isn't she selfish though? Do what works for you Zuzu. By the sound of it she will probably go back to you as she will probably never find anyone as loving and understanding as you are. You need to look after yourself though. I wish you happiness.

Take care man

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Old 6th February 2008, 11:49 AM   #11
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When is it to late..?

Blue eyed ..

Quote:
neglect for affection/adoration/attention and appreciation
Quote:
I believe that if a woman is satisfied at home - she will not look or take advances from other men. Only the frustrated and neglected will respond to other men's advances.
I have noticed around the forum your thoughts on nurturing etc

This is where we men fall down BIG time. I hold my hands up. We don't realize we are being unkind or selfish sometimes. YET my STBXW is not perfect. Physicially she is almost there Damn it is so hard to not want to hug and hold her and snog her face off. It has been sooooo long

But some of the things she did or say was not taking me into account. But it was the way(s) I dealt with certain events that caused me to get frustrated and therfore anger surfaced with not so nice words following.
There were times I walked away but she followed to get her point across rather than leaving it. It became tit for tat in the end.

If I could have lost my stubborness and pride I think we could have nipped this in the bud LONG ago. She gave me so many chances but then the "switch" went off. Emotionally detached from me. Whether that means the love she had for me is gone or is it buried deep?

My question is.. she was losing the love she had for me because I was chipping away at it. Not filling the love bank with kindness and devotion etc because I was wrapped in myself, self obsorbed, selfish etc and this was to do with HER and her words as well. Not the house, chores etc
I was perfect in that dept,
I withdrew, from sex to, she held it against me when she was pregnant. She thought I never found her sexy, which I did but it was just me and the the thought I would hurt the baby. Why couldn't she understand that.

Ok back to the question, if all these things as you say are missing at home they will take advances elsewhere which lets face it most of the time is from a work colleague because they know these people for years and spend sometimes more time with them than they do with there spouses.

In my case it happened (read my threads).
Advances were made by this toe rag () who coincidently is S himself but I am not sure if this was an excuse to get with my ex.
But I accept the fact that he made he feel desirable etc.

So how would you suggest I act when I speak/see my ex?

I am not this unkind, selfish man. We all have faults and I know what they are. I just got a little lost. Got carried away and should have slammed the brakes on. Now I have been told it is a little to late.

I know this OM she had attention from is nothing more than "support".

He was there at the right time. I am her H and I love her so much and we have a beautiful D who looks like both of us. It must scare her each morning when shes our D and sees a baby me

I would rather have her see this man than anybody else then it gives me more time to make some changes.
I know I can change. I just needed a slap!

What would you say as a lady of wisdom think I should do whilst I am S.
Is it a matter of just get on with my life and find somebody else?
Or when women say it is over..it is OVER no matter what you do?

That was the only real problem in our R. She just didn't think I could change. We were a great team and perfect otherwise.

I am seeing a counsellor. One txt message sent to me about a mth ago she said " you are full of it, you just don't see yourself, you will never change, the counselling didn't work, I knew it wouldn't thats why I would never have got back with you."

Quote:
You know ***** I have been thinking even more...

I still can't get my head around why if you love someone, you want to say such hurtful things all the time when angry, why would you want to hurt me the way you did?

In the end I know I began saying things too. It was never me to do that, even if I have shown I am capable since....anyone is more or less capable in the end when pushed enough!!!

These are things that will stay with me forever, and I will always wonder why the man that I hoped to spend my life with and grow with wanted to throw it all away with so many issues and things that he did to cause problems in the relationship. Or for that matter why he didnt want me enough to try and change some of the things that even he knew were a problem!

I know ***** that you will probably want to defend yourself, but there is no point as it is my feelings on the way this relationship broke down, and they won't change as you didn't try to change the things that were going wrong after all the times I asked/begged you too. So I cannot change my thoughts on it all.

Anyway, its all a big shame, but there is no point in stressing about it all now, there were enough chances to make this relationship a cracking one. But it never happened and i dont want to be in this kind of loveless marriage any longer. Nor do I want our daughter growing up in it as she would soon pick up on the problems.

Lets not discuss this any further. We couldnt make it work...end of......!

This is what she emailed me last year whilst we were in the process of selling up and separating. Some insight into why she left.

Not sure if you are clued up on my situation but you seem to be spreading some sense around the forum. I like to get lots of female points of view on how my ex would be feeling. I am not mad at my ex I am mad at myself.

Sorry to take up this thread with my cr*p.
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Last edited by smileysmile; 6th February 2008 at 11:57 AM..
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Old 6th February 2008, 12:08 PM   #12
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Nomad,

Thanks, brother. And for the record, she knows she could never go through what I'm doing for her. She'd be gone by now. And yes, she's being very selfish and she admits that. She also admits that she'll never find from another man what we have. I'm holding out hope that she eventually comes to her senses before she does anything unforgivable.
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Old 6th February 2008, 12:15 PM   #13
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I agree with this quote:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Woggle View Post
Why are you putting up with this? She wants to eventually get physical with this guy and she might have already. Tell her to give it up or you will file for divorce. If she chooses to keep him be glad to get rid of her.
I also think you've been placed squarely in friend camp by your wife. She wants to date younger men. She wants to have a her best friend--aka you--there to break her fall. She's getting the best of both worlds right now and being very careless about your feelings, your children's feelings, and the OM's feelings. I'd draw a line now. She is acting selfishly...period.
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Old 6th February 2008, 3:57 PM   #14
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Speaking from someone who has had an emotional and sexual affair with my best friend, the only way to save the marriage is to not have any contact with the other individual. Her business isn't done yet. Until it is done she will not return to the marriage. Take it from me, someone who has dealt with this for a few years now. Good luck.
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Old 6th February 2008, 4:08 PM   #15
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Zuzu

I'm a woman in my mid-40s. From that perspective I'll tell you some rough things. At that age I think we are all a little f.cked up, I see quite a few around me being like that me also in the sense that I have not had sex for many years and it makes me very frustrated, anxious, depressed, and I don't see a way to fix this unless I am unfaithful. I consider myself above average intellectually, physically and a good person.

Life is tough and your wife is having some mid-life crisis. I think she's being selfish but this is stronger than we are. She has spared details, she's not telling you everything, believe me.

Very rare that a younger man involves himself in a serious LTR with a woman in her mid-40s. UUUUEEEE! The surprise she's going to have! I calculate that in the mid-40s we start having some health issues, she will and this man being still young will leave her after a short while instead of being her nurse. She does not see this. The passion is directing her life. I think she wants to be with this guy, maybe until she gets tired, but she needs to taste him.

What is the reason for wanting to get separated if it is not that she wanted to be with this guy? She doesn't love you? I don't think so, lack of sex? No. From what you say it seems she had everything. What did she say it's the real reason for separation?

Make up your mind and tell her exactly what you can put up with. She told you she'll probably come back, sure... until she's done with the other one! She is selfish so don't let her step over you and be selfish too, think about yourself, how this makes you feel and see if you can still handle this situation or stop seeing her. She's probably used to get what she wants. She's risking it all. If she has it in her brain to have an PA with this guy not much will stop her.
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