In love with married man

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    Life seems to be so unpredictable. As it happened  to me, I fell for someone who was already married. I was going through very bad phase of a long term relationship and as I met him it was kind of a trigger that I finally broke up with my ex.

    I never realized what I was getting into. He never lied to me nor he made any false promises. He reciprocated my feelings for him. He too admits that he has fallen in love with me but at the same time he keeps on  telling me to focus on my career and find a decent guy to date and marry. Sometimes I feel I pursued it so hard that things got so complicated.  I never realized  that things can become so complex. I never intended nor do I intend now to break a happy family. Initially  I felt good just by hearing his voice but as relationship matured I started expecting  more. I know its immoral but can’t stop thinking about him or even imagining that in some parallel world we can be together.

    I don’t know how to get out of this situation! Please advice.


    Dear Shelly:

    As I understand it, you were in an unsatisfying long-term relationship, the last part of it was “a very bad phase”. During that very bad phase, you met a man. At first, his voice was all it took to make you feel good. That good feeling was like a breath of fresh air which energized you to end that bad, long-term relationship.

    And then, over time, feeling more and more attached to the new man who returned your feelings for him, his voice is no longer enough to produce that same very good feeling. You need more, you expect more, and you don’t want to break his family, feeling that it is indeed morally wrong to have a relationship with a married man. You want “out of this situation!”, but you don’t want him out of your life. Did I understand correctly?

    Before I can advise you, I need to know a bit more about what you mean by “things got so complicated”, and “things can become so complex” (?)




    Thanks Anita for replying

    Yes you understood  it correctly.  He is a nice man so I don’t want him out of my life. Sometimes I think is it anyhow possible to just be friend with him without any romantic feelings for him or even any expectation . He never said anything wrong about his wife or family. Since day 1 He told that he love his wife and his whole life revolves around their child. Probably his commitment to his family attracted me towards him.

    He is so patient, calm and wise. He listened to all my problems and was present as a support when I needed in taking decisions.

    But it became complicated  because he too fell for me…gradually I guess… he says he love me so much but he cannot offer a committed relationship. We both agree that there is no future (probably i don’t agree as options are available but I know that those options will never be exercised). Despite this we both are maintaining a secret relationship, which is very frustrating  and tiresome.  I tried so many times to cut all contacts from him but maximum I can do was 5 days. It is complex because I don’t know what to do. He is not a cheater to me but yes he is cheating his wife to which I am also an accomplice.

    I feel why I knowingly pursued this relationship. I feel  shame, anger, loneliness  sadness, jealousy, thrill of affair and love & care for him and his family all at same time

    I had no idea that it would be so difficult  to end. My self respect is at all time zero level. I cannot concentrate  on my career. i feel stuck.


    sometimes I feel am i being used here?  Do he really mean what he say? As of now whatever he said to do he has done.  But still  I don’t know whether he is equally emotionally invested in this relationship as I am. Am I being fooled here?  Because  if he really  loved me then why he is with his wife?  Or is it just a phase he is enjoying conveniently! Why take the trouble.? Sometimes  I feel why not open up this secret affair  in front of his wife and let her take decision.  I don’t know what to do..please help


    I want to add, I am 11 years younger  to him.


    Dear Shelly:

    You are welcome. Here are my comments and attempted answers to your questions:

    1. You wrote that he is a nice, patient, calm, wise and supportive man, and a good listener (“He is a nice man… He is so patient, calm and wise. He listened to all my problems and was present as support when I needed in taking decisions”), all which means he should have a calming, positive affect on your life, mind and heart.

    But his affect on your life, mind and heart is mostly distressing and negative: “I feel shame, anger, loneliness, sadness, jealousy… My self respect is at all time zero level. I cannot concentrate on my career. I feel stuck”.

    His affect on your life, mind and heart is lots of shame, anger, suspicion, doubt, jealousy, sadness and  decreased concentration, bad for your personal life and your professional life.

    When a man loves a woman in a mindful way, listening, paying attention, caring- he wants to have a positive affect on her, not a negative affect. If he sees the woman that he loves distressed and troubled because of him, then he will want to correct all about him that troubles her and which is indeed troubling.

    If he is indeed wise, if he listens to you well, and he loves you (“he says he loves me so much”), then he must know that his affect on your life is mostly negative, that he is harming you. What does he do with this information about the woman he supposedly loves (?)

    2. There is a difference between Reality and Appearances. He appears like “a nice man… he loves his wife and his whole life revolves around their child… commitment to his family.. patient, calm and wise”, but is he really all these things?

    Let’s say that he appears patient and wise etc. to his wife as well, and to his child, and let’s say he invests a lot of time, effort and money on his child, truly a good husband and father in many ways, but you cannot  deny the fact that he is risking his wife finding out about his affair, and he is therefore risking his wife and his child’s mental health (if the mother is suffers=> her child suffers).

    Is a man so committed to his family be willing to risk the mental health of his wife and child again and again, as in an ongoing affair (?)

    3. You wrote: “it became complicated because he too fell for me.. gradually”- this means that he started a sexual/ friendly affair with you before he fell for you. It was not a falling in-love feeling that motivated him to start a sexual relationship with you.

    If it was not an in-love feeling that motivated him, then what was it… if not sexual. And if it was sex that motivated him to have an affair with you, and he has been a sexual man all along, I am not assuming that you are his first affair, or his last, or currently, his only affair.

    4. “why not open up this secret affair in front of his wife and let her take decision”?-

    – she may already know about his affair with you, and/ or his previous affairs, and she endures it because he is her financial support and the father to her child.

    – I don’t think he wants her to make a decision that will inconvenience him. Likely, for him, it is about what he wants to do, not about what she wants to do.

    5. “is it just a phase he is enjoying conveniently!.. am I being used here?”- because he first had sex with you repeatedly before falling in love with you, then likely, he started the affair with you so to satisfy his sexual desires, and therefore, he used you that way.

    6. “Why take the trouble?”- if you mean, why did/ does he take the trouble of listening to you, of being emotionally supportive regarding your struggles (on matters not related to him) instead of have a strictly sexual affair with a woman, such as an exchange with a prostitute, or otherwise, with a woman with multiple partners-

    – then my answer is that there is way more of a chance of him getting sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) with prostitutes, or with women who have multiple sexual partners. A man concerned with STDs feels safer with a woman who has only him as a sexual partner. To keep that kind of a woman motivated to remain in the affair, he has to invest his time and effort, in such ways as listening to her, being particularly friendly and helpful.

    7. “Does he really mean what he says?”- Sometimes. No one lies all the time. Some of the things he says he means at the moment he says them. Sometimes he says X, which implies Y, but he doesn’t actually say Y, and he doesn’t mean Y.

    He told you that he loves you, which may imply to most women, and therefore implies to you,  that he currently loves you more than he loves any other woman, that he is not pursuing any other woman, that he wants you in his life forevermore, that (you fill in), but none of these things may be true.

    8. “I don’t  know whether he is equally emotionally invested in this relationship as I am”- that’s an easy one. Clearly you are more invested emotionally, to the point of you continuing the relationship even though it affects you so negatively.

    9. “Am I being fooled here? Because if he really loved me then why he is with his wife?”- notice, I wrote above about him saying X which implies Y? He told you that he loves you so much (X), so you assume that he loves you more than he loves his wife, or that he does not love his wife (Y).

    -a man has to invest something if he wants a woman to have sex with him, particularly a married man. With a prostitute, it is a certain amount of money paid to her. With long-term sexual partners, it means paying her rent, ands/ buying her gifts, taking her to restaurants, etc. But it often takes more than material gifts: it takes making the woman feel special, by listening to her, making her feel that the man’s interest in her is beyond sexual, showing her that he is interested in her thoughts, in her feelings, not just in her body.

    10. “I want to add, I am 11 years younger to him”- it is possible that his wife is his age, about a decade older than you (I don’t have that information, of course). It is possible that she doesn’t look as young and as fit as you. Lots of men, if not all, are attracted to youth, to younger women.




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    Thanks Anita

    I read your reply throughly. But I disagree to few parts of your reply because

    1. Our affair is not sexual …

    2. His wife is financially independent



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    Dear Shelly:

    I assumed your affair with this married man was sexual because you wrote earlier that “he is cheating his wife”, that you feel the “thrill of affair”, and you asked: “am I being used here?.. Am I being fooled here?.. is it just a phase he is enjoying conveniently!.. why not open up this secret affair in front of his wife..”.

    In your recent post, you wrote that the affair “is not sexual”. So, what you meant earlier by him cheating his wife, was that he was cheating on her emotionally, not sexually. I wonder what kind of thrill you experience at times, with him (“thrill of affair”), and in what ways you think that he is using you (?)

    I wonder in what ways you think that he “is enjoying” himself, if the affair is not sexual…(?)

    I also wonder about the nature of the secrecy (“this secret affair”)- do you meet in secret to talk, to just talk, maybe hold hands.. (?)

    * Some people do not refer to sexual activities that are not sexual intercourse,  as having sex, so I am thinking that the two of you may be engaged in sexual activities, just not intercourse. I don’t know.

    As you noticed I placed my question marks in parentheses, which means that I don’t expect you to answer my questions, knowing you may feel uncomfortable to do so. You are welcome to answer them, or not. I ask questions only for the purpose of understanding the situation.


    Chatty Lady

    Hi Shelly,

    Things are getting more complicated for you. He has told you he wont leave his wife but yes, he is fond of you. He wont easily leave his wife and child. Married men are usually afraid of being the one at fault when a relationship involves a child. I have been in your shoes three times before and l knew it wasnt going anywhere. I am in that situation but l am yet to ask him if he will leave as we are both attached with familes. With the married guys it was just sex and thats it. Just walk away my dear,

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