VinWrite a message
- What is my age:
- My orientation:
- What is the color of my hair:
- What is my favourite music:
- Other hobbies:
- Learning foreign languages
We were planning a new life together. Now our only contact is a snatched phone call during his daily run.
This is the age-old story of a younger woman meeting an older, married man at work.
I was aware that he was married with. He was always very active on social media, and often I thought, What a cute family!
I never had any intention of getting involved with him, especially because I had been cheated on before. At the same time, I can remember the exact moment I met him, before anything had happened. One night, at a work event, he and I really connected. A few days and a few hundred text messages later, I was hooked.
He expressed to me his grievances about his wife. He praised her for being a good person and mother, but not a good partner. Should I confess?
This was texting all day and night. Phone calls on the way to and from work.
Reminder successfully set!
Seeing each other four or more times a week. Endless Snapchats, private messages, inside jokes, and so on.
He told me he loved me, and I loved him back. He looked at me in a way no one else ever had before.
There were serious talks of him wanting to leave but not being able to because of issues with his. Then his wife found out.
That weekend he expressed how much he loved me and said that although he was confused about what to do, he still wanted me. And that was that. I replay the things he said to me and the endless conversations we had, and think, How can he move on from me so easily?
Any advice? He was clear that he wanted to be with you—as long as he could also stay with his family. After all, he had you for sex and connection, and his wife for stability, security, the comfort of a shared history, and a mutual commitment to their children.
You seem to believe that if he loved you more, or if you were more X or Y, he would have chosen you after his wife found out. But commonly in affairs, no matter what the married person says about his marital dissatisfaction, he has many compelling reasons to stay.
Divorce is expensive, painful, and time-consuming—not just hiring lawyers and going through that difficult process, but coordinating two households financially and logistically for the long haul. The material quality for all members of his current household would decline.
Read: The divorce gap. Nor could he really know unless the two of you get deep in the trenches of children and bad moods and health issues and dirty dishes and shared money and annoying habits and existential loneliness and fear of aging and utter exhaustion and years of the same fundamental disagreements and recycled jokes—all of which are revealed only in the experience of a long-term relationship.
Given this degree of uncertainty, would he really blow up his life for you? He may have fantasized about it with you—which only added to the already-delicious fantasy of the affair. Without being aware of it, they have an uncanny attraction to people who share the characteristics of a person who hurt them growing up. In the beginning of a relationship, these characteristics will be barely perceptible, but the unconscious has a finely tuned radar system.
Maybe this time, the unconscious imagines, I can go back and heal that wound from long ago by engaging with somebody familiar—but new. The only problem is, by choosing familiar partners, people guarantee a familiar result: They reopen the wounds and feel even more inadequate and unlovable.
This might be what has happened for you. Think about it this way: Just as you were a projection of something he is trying to work out, he was a projection of something you are trying to work out.
But now the drug is gone and the feelings are front and center—leaving you in withdrawal, which is harrowing, but which also creates an opportunity to understand these feelings through the clarity of sobriety. So how do you pick yourself up again? You let yourself feel sad. You grieve the loss not so much of him but of the fantasy you co-created.
Thanks for rating
You ask yourself if the appeal of him was that you would never really feel safe with him. This might also apply to the person you dated who cheated on you. All of this work will help you figure out what you were avoiding by hiding away with a married man, and once you do, you will be so much closer to finding the love you deserve.
Dear Therapist is for informational purposes only, does not constitute medical advice, and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
Always seek the advice of your physician, mental-health professional, or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Popular Latest. The Atlantic Crossword. In Subscribe.