In today's society of "ME" it's far to easy for couples to LOSE sight of what it takes to make a marriage work. We as people don't want to see how our actions effect others. Especially those who we are supposed to love the most. However time and life does funny things to your memory. Those butterflies you once felt suddenly start fluttering less and less until eventually all you become is a role. You eventually start looking at the other person with spite. You start questioning yourself. Do you really love this person? Do they really love you? Why have they stopped doing all those fun wonderful things they used to do? Why did I marry this person? What do we have in common? Maybe they have stopped loving you.
But have they really? Maybe in your own haste to seek self gratification you missed the "I love you" before work or you walked in and saw the house was a wreck and failed to notice that the kids have done their homework and are in bed on time for once. Yes your spouse forgot to mow the yard but he did that load of laundry you had been dreading all day. Did you say thank you or did you say "About time ,I've been doing laundry for years now"? The reality is that you have to keep working on your relationship long after those old feeling have begun to fade otherwise you will find yourself becoming what I call the:
Somewhere along the line you have had a person of the opposite sex comment on your clothes, perfume, hairstyle, or physical appearance. And, lo and behold, those once dormant butterflies start acting up again. So the next time someone says something to you to pique your interest, you start an innocent conversation- usually started with a compliment given back to that person. You are offered lunch, or something as innocent as coffee and conversation. And you go. After all, you aren't jumping into bed with this person, just having coffee. Eventually, those coffees turn into lunches or dinner, and you find yourself wanting to be in this person’s company more and more. You can talk so easily to them. They say all the right things. They listen to you. They have similar interests. And before you know it, you are talking on the phone or emailing this person. All of this being done in secret because in our "society" you can't really be friends with the opposite sex without someone commenting about an affair. But in reality what you are doing is rationalizing the start of your Emotional Affair. Yes, I said Affair.
Contrary to what some people believe, it IS possible to have an affair without being physical. Although the physical part usually isn't far behind. You find yourself wanting to see this person and be with them, do things with them, and you start making excuses for getting out of the house just to see them. You use your friends, i.e. shopping, girl's night out, your friend is having problems you are going to console her. You use work, business trips, working later, going to work early, calling the other person from the office or using the office computer to send email or instant messaging. You get a new cell phone if you've never had one or you get a "secret" phone just so you can keep in contact with the other person. You password your voicemail and you keep your phone locked so no one can access your call log. You have your bill sent via email to a private email address; you text message then delete all messages. You are constantly Plotting ways of being with this person. If you have to lie, so be it. Nothing or no one will stand in your way of being with this person. You use those friends who will to help you get out of the house. You have them call and ask to meet you somewhere or to come to their house, then they don't answer the phone or you let your kids have a play date while you go and have your own play date. You don't hang out with people whom you know would disapprove of your actions or would possibly tell your spouse about your ventures. This can go on a few weeks, months and even years.
By now you've probably raised your spouse’s suspicions and they are starting to question your every move. They call you at work just to make sure you are there. As soon as you come home they bombard you with questions. When you are on the computer at home they walk by to look over your shoulder. They are starting to cling to you like glue, always asking “what is wrong?” or What have I done?” and you get upset and you can't have this. They will interfere with your "other" plans. SO you do one of two things:
- You cool things with the other person until you feel it's safe again to continue where you left off. The other person will understand; after all, by now you've made your spouse out to be this awful controlling, uncaring person who you just cohabitate with. And chances are, they too are a spouse and are getting the same kind of pressures at their house.
- You start rationalizing that you are "just friends" to your spouse, if they've found out about the other person and they are questioning you. “How did you meet?” “Why is this person calling you all the time?” “Why don't you want to stay at home or do things with me?”. This may buy you some time because you also throw out: "Why can't a man and a woman just be friends without the whole affair card being played?" The spouses, feeling like the whole world is dropping out from under them, try to see it your way and hopefully make things better in your marriage. So they drop the subject like a hot iron. Only to have that gut wrenching feeling that "something" just isn't quite right with you. But to keep the peace, they don't want to aggravate the issue But, You are fighting more and more, which just makes the other person look that more angelic and the perfect companion in your eyes. You storm off in rages. You can't understand why this person who was acting like they didn’t know you even existed is now trying to become attached to you at the hip. You keep pushing and pushing your spouse away. Hoping eventually they will get tired and give up. And in some cases they do. For them it is easier to just roll over than to go through another argument. On the other hand you may have a spouse that wants to get a death grip around you and never let go. This leads us to the next installment of an affair.
Right now you feel as if you can't even go to bathroom with out your spouse on your tail. Even when you have a legitimate reason for going to the grocery store, they want to come with you. When you tell them you are going to work, they question you about the times you get there, leave etc. They want to know who you see and talk to. They want explicit details of your time gone. They want to know where all your money went; if you bought lunch, they need to know how much you spent. You find yourself coveting the time you spend with your "friend." You see them as your salvation from this beast that used to be your spouse. You feel carefree when you are with them. It doesn't matter that the yard isn't mowed or that the dishes haven't been done, this person could care less whether or not you paid your mortgage on time or if your car insurance has been paid.
You see your spouse as the heavy. Always bringing you down with talk of bills and other mundane things. But in retrospect, The Other Person could care less whether or not your child has the chickenpox or your mom has been in the hospital for whatever reason. They listen to you, sure, and give you a shoulder to cry on but, it's your spouse who has been there to take your child to soccer practice and help you with deciding whether or not to put your mother in a nursing home. Being in the "fog" of an affair tends to put blinders on people and they can't see the forest for the trees.
Back to being smothered. You feel as if every freedom you have ever had has been taken away by your spouse. You hate the fact that you "have" to tell them your itinerary and that they may want to join you on outings to the grocery store , pick up the kids from ball practice; or, if you are going to a bar with "friends", they may want to come to. You find yourself only telling them your plans as you are walking out the door with little or no opportunity to question you or join you. You feel as if you have the world on your shoulders and you can't quite remember life being this way. But magically, those feelings seem to fade away once you see the Other Person.
What do you do if/when your spouse finds out? And they will find out. Most betrayed spouses develop this sixth sense. They know when things aren't quite right with your alibi. They also start noticing that you are dressing a certain way just to go to work or to the grocery store. They notice that maybe you've bought a new cologne or new underwear. They start asking questions. They ask your friends, family, co-workers, anyone they think may have a clue as to who you were with and where you've been.
They start checking your cell phone. They may even go so far as to check your underwear for mysterious "stains" and hair. They check your car, clothes, briefcase, computer, anything you could use to hide evidence of an affair. Their need for information is so strong that they will even hire a private investigator if they feel the need. You now become panicked. You start to realize that maybe your spouse is on to you. You become paranoid. You start getting flustered when they question you or look at you a certain way. You start checking and double checking your alibis. You make sure your phone, computer, and briefcase are locked. You even start carrying clean underwear in your car hidden under the seat to change into before you get home. You monitor the phone constantly. You turn your cell phone off when you get home or you put it in your pocket on vibrate and if it goes off you suddenly have to go to the bathroom. You start seeing your spouse as a warden, not a spouse. You suddenly feel like you did when you were sixteen and sneaking out of the house to see your boy/girlfriend that your parents didn't like or know about. You look for ways to get your spouse out of the house so that you are free to chat on the internet, or make a phone call.
"Type of Adulterers"
There are so many types of affairs and Adulterers that it would fill a whole newspaper with their info. So I'm going to try to give you the 3 general types.
ONS - One Night Standers - These are the ones who don't want the "emotional" attachment or liability of keeping a steady “other”. They usually pick up hookers, go to massage parlors or sometimes they hook up at business conventions. Massage Parlors usually take major credit cards so they may charge it to their account but the betrayed spouse rarely notices the charge due to the fact that it's under another account name..
Work Flings - These are most common due to the fact that they can interact with each other and not raise suspicions. If a co-worker calls the house, the spouse just brushes it off as a work-related issue. Same with emails. These are usually affairs of convenience. They require little work because the stage to see one another is already set all; they have to do is add the excuses.
Then you have your "cake eaters". These types always want their cake and eat it too. They want the butterflies and the excitement of an affair, yet they want the security that they will have a devoted spouse to come home to as well. They tend to use the affair to justify staying in their marriage. It's the spice they've been looking for.
One day you will wake up and the fog that you are in lifts and you will find that you have gotten yourself into a major situation. A situation that could/should have been avoided at all costs. You will have taken the innocent trust of you spouse and demolished it along with their spirit, ego, and self esteem. You will have taken the flower you once married and poured gasoline on it and struck a match. That soul will NEVER be the same, whether you decide to work on your marriage or end it. You have literally taken a human being and completely altered their inner structure. Not to mention the toll this places on your children whether they are adults or just babies. You will see the people that you were supposed to love the most, forsaken all others for, go through the most agonizing pain that a human soul can possibly go through. They will be Devastated, angry, remorseful for things they blame on themselves. They will dissect their entire marriage to find out just what went wrong. They will then turn that blame inward. They will start justifying your affair for you. If they were skinnier, smarter, into your hobbies more, maybe they should have cooked more so you wouldn't have to go out. You will watch this butterfly become entangled in the web of your affair and watch as the spider of the affair slowly encases them in a cocoon; then you get to watch it as it literally eats your spouse alive. Every detail of the affair slowly turns their insides to liquid and the affair will then suck the life right out of them. But what can you do to HELP?
"Food For Thought"
If you take the time, you may recall that before this affair started, you never had anyone telling you that you were unhappy with your current situation. Everyone makes mistakes. The best advice I can give is: if you want to save your marriage or if you aren't quite sure what you want to do, just confess. Tell your spouse everything. When they ask questions, give answers. For some spouses that I have encountered, the betrayed spouse writes his/her questions out and gives them to their wayward spouse with a time limit of one week or less, depending on the individual. The wayward spouse has this time to contemplate their answers and no one feels like they are put "on the spot". From what I have gathered from other wayward spouses, the "getting it off my chest" was the best thing they could have done, whether or not It put the cards out on the table, and they HAD to make a decision about their marriage