Why People Have An Affair

SCENARIO

Many women either suspect or discover that their partner is having an affair. What a lot of women then ask themselves is “what am I doing wrong?”

Do people cheat because of their partners? Can what you say or do cause your partner to stray?

CONSIDER THIS

VICKI:
People have affairs because of their own thoughts and belief systems. While it’s easy to blame a partner it has nothing to do with them.

Sex means many things to many people. For some it’s a physical need and for others it can be about self-worth or manhood/womanhood, etc. There are so many reason why people cheat on their partners that they couldn’t all be covered here. What so many people don’t understand is that the reasons are generally mental and/or emotional needs that are not being met. Many of the unmet needs having nothing to do with sex at all.

If someone has unmet needs it’s their responsibility to discover what they do need, whether through counseling or inner reflection, and discuss it with their significant other. No adult is responsible for another adult’s emotional well-being.

With that being said I want to add in that anyone who has a partner who is withholding sex will most certainly stray. Especially men as their sperm can only build to such an amount then there is a physical need to expel it. We all need human touch and masturbation can only cut it for a certain amount of time.

JILL:
It should first be said that not all female partners do blame themselves. However, the ones that do may do so for two reasons.
Their self-blame may come from low self-esteem. We are inundated with all forms of media that tell us that to the thin and beautiful comes the perfect life complete with a perfect marriage. Reality shows feature men dropping to their knees to ask the newly transformed woman to marry him, the subtle message being that he would not have proposed to her as she looked before.

Secondly many women instantly want to fix a problem, to make it all better. They don’t take time to analyze what has transpired and more importantly to see where the other person is responsible for their actions. If that person was looking for a change in his life or if something triggered feelings of unhappiness he should have done the right thing and talk to his partner.

All this doesn’t mean that there should not be a time of quiet reflection for the woman. An honest evaluation of what has transpired will bring with it positive self-growth and recharged self-esteem.

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Husband Of 27 Years Is Gay

QUESTION

My husband and I have been married for 27 years and have two grown children. He recently told me he wants a divorce; he also revealed that he has been having an affair with another man! I feel angry and betrayed as though our life together was a lie. What should I do?

ANSWER

JILL:

1. Take a deep breath and accept that you have a right to feel those emotions and more. You are dealing with a number of difficult issues here. Not the least of which is that the end of the day you and your husband of 27 years are getting a divorce.

2. Don’t assume that he didn’t or doesn’t still love you. Being gay doesn’t preclude his ability to having feelings of love for you.

3. The foundation of the marriage itself I cannot speculate on. One day I hope that you will let him tell you why he got married and what the union meant to him. That conversation may bring you some peace and lessen the feelings of betrayal.

4. Remember that what your husband is doing isn’t about you. Don’t question your desirability, femininity or the type of a wife that your were.

5. When I work with a client who is undergoing a major life transition they tend to feel empty and off-balance so I recommend that they take a lot of quiet time for themselves. It gives you an opportunity to assess who you are, loving mother, good friend, supportive daughter, strong and vibrant woman, successful entrepreneur or career woman.

6. Don’t hesitate to turn to spiritual or professional guidance during this time.

Finally, self-care helps with the healing process. Practice the things that are important for your mental and physical well being. Avoid friends or relatives who may judge or discuss the issues continually. Seek the company of those who strengthen and respect you. In other words take care of you!

VICKI:
Jill is absolutely correct when she told you that your husband’s actions are not about you and not to speculate about his love for you. Know that when your husband chose to marry you it was not with the intention to cause you pain.

There is no doubt that you are filled with questions at the moment and some extremely intense emotions. Where I believe that it is very important that you ask your husband for the answers you need it should not be done until you are in a calm and collected state of mind.

Firstly it’s impossible to be in emotional turmoil and have clarity at the same time. You need to be clear headed in order to decide what the really relevant questions for you are and in order to be able to listen to your husband’s answers with an open mind, which you will need. Take all the alone or quiet time you need in order to get to that frame of mind; it may be weeks or it may be months and you may need help getting there.

Secondly when you and your husband do talk, especially about his motivations, you need to recognize that this isn’t a black and white area. It is not a matter of right or wrong. This is the gray area where he has made past decisions based on his fears and insecurities; something that every single one of us has done at one time or another.

I hope the two of you will sit down and talk with compassion and good will for each other in both your hearts and truly listen to each other.