Married, Having An Affair!

I've been married for many years to a good man. however, I'm also having an affair with a married man. He's older than me and has been married longer, and we both love our spouses and families, and have no plans or desire to end our respective marriages. Yet we can't stay away from each other.  The sex is incredible, but we also love just spending time together doing just about anything.  We both have guilt pangs about it every now and then, but not enough to keep us apart.

Believe me, we both entered the relationship with our eyes wide open, with full knowledge of the potential consequences.  We are NOT naive about it. The joy I feel is incredible, and I feel more alive now than I have in years.  It's an exhilerating ride.

muddywaters muddywaters
46-50, F
34 Responses Mar 31, 2009

I am also married having an affair with a married man, I love my husband but we barely have sex and I tried hard and long to fix this problem and its not possible. Although We haven't had sex yet he was afraid at first but changed his mind however right when he did something happened and he cant have sex right now. It has been a few months and this is temporary, I don't mind waiting but I think he is changing his mind back saying this happened because he's not doing the right thing etc. I don't want him to think this way how can I get him to want me again and realize this is just conscience. its really hard for me to feel comfortable and I do with him and I made the decision I am going to do this I don't want to start over again!

I had no idea there are people who are going through what I have been going through. I thought I needed professional help, perhaps I do. But, here I am, married for nine months, but we had broken up before the wedding and I started a relationship with someone else, only to feel guilty and went ahead and married my ex. The man I was with was going through his annulment so I chose the safer route. Nine months later, stuck in a sexless marriage, nothing in common and I'm still speaking to the other man. I miss him like crazy and wish I was with him. My guilt is holding me hostage. How do I get out?

What can I say?? "a happy wife, a happy life".
I'm married and have been with my lover for just over 4 you, it's amazing!!
We have a great understanding and don't take risks to compramise our families.
All the best to you!

I see how you've gotten in to the mind set of this being okay.. You're having fun, and you love your husband, and it's a harmless affair, right?
The thing about marriage is it isn't all about you. This post is all me me me. Maybe your husband would also like to have a date on the side. How do you feel about that?
The secrets aren't fair. You're having a great time and love being married while living the single life, and your husband gets to deal with the stresses of being married, with no other release. Why shouldn't he get to have the same fun you're having?
If you honestly love your husband you should be real with him. If you think you'll lose him over this then maybe you should think about whether or not that's worth it. If it is, as you're saying you're well aware of the consequences, then be the woman I know you are, and tell him what's going on.
Obviously, I can't decide that for you. Whether you do or not won't affect my life in any way. But it saddens me to see how many people refuse to live with integrity.

mdoutdoors, Your letter sounds just like me exactly. the relationship that I had was the best. Our communication, interests and sex was what we envisioned life should be. Unfortunately I was unable to make the break because of the hurt I would cause my family. She was hurt because I would not leave my wife.
We stopped seeing each other, but four years later I still think of her, and I probably always will. The only advice that I can give would be that if you do ever meet someone who does make a difference, take the plunge. Life is too short to spent it remembering what once was.

I can relate to your story. I had much the same experience. Today, nearly 30 yrs later I still regret not having taken the plunge. i see her on occasion and her look and her smile still has the power to make me weak in the knees. I will always have a place in my heart for her.

I've read this thinking I was the one writing this----how uncanny.I to love my wife but there is no sex in our marriage. I resently confided to a lady friend that I knew for roughly 35 years and told her that there was nothing phsical for years in my marriage and confess I had thoughts about her but never said nothing that would jepordize our friendship---well we met and now when we are apart it really hurts to be seperated. She never had any children of her own because of her husband infertility but I told her of how I felt about her yearsback and if I would have aproach her than, we might of had children together. she said back than was Ni'eve back than and It would have been disastorist. I have feelings that I've never had with my wife. We to don't want to end of our marriages(Financal reasons) but I feel we love each other with a passion. I don't her that I want to be with her to the end---That maybe God brought us together. I love her

Hi Muddy, Just came across your story.. <br />
I was down in the dumps for not having seen my lover for 4 weeks, and went looking for other woe stories!! LOL you changed my day! I will have to ponder this direction and write again. <br />
I love this site... just when I became so desperate cause my lover has been busy with his family and our schedules haven't been working... there you are, with your harmonious story... I've been in a relationship with him for over 5 years, and we too love each other and can't be without ea/o. But his wife DID find out and it has been very difficult ever since to see each other over the last 2 years, so Im considering breaking it up as it is not balanced anymore, and someone IS getting hurt and IS controlling our time together... so I DO despair sometimes... and my mind goes to a dark and sad place, and so does he, we start talking about solutions and they are all too drastic, I suppose it hurts if your lover chooses his wife over you, even though my husband loves me and showers me with attention.. <br />
So thank you for this story. Tell me what you think, you lucky thing!! BTW how long have you two been together? Love Marmelade

wow. that's really nice! Unfortunately I doubt my husband would have the same attitude, but I do understand what you are saying here. My relationship has definitely affected me in positive ways, which I do bring home. The guilt still shows up from time to time, as it does with my bf. But we've learned to cope with it and know it doesn't last for long.<br />
<br />
Thanks again for sharing the poem.

Muddywaters, <br />
If your affair is still ongoing, I hope that it is both loving and rewarding. Guilt doesn't share the same space with love very graciously, and if you rid yourself of the guilt, eventually you may find that your'e bringing your joy home with you. Please forgive my indulgence in sharing with you a poem I wrote for my wife:<br />
<br />
My True Love<br />
<br />
You smiled at him at last week’s soccer game<br />
And I loved when you came home<br />
You met him for a drink and laughed<br />
And I loved when you came home<br />
<br />
You thwarted his advances, his longing<br />
And I loved when you came home<br />
You relented and kissed him<br />
You cried, and you left him<br />
You needed him and reconsidered<br />
And made love<br />
You called me –sobbing- with your head on his chest<br />
And his hand on your belly<br />
You continued loving him<br />
And you didn’t come home.<br />
<br />
He commands your attention, your conversation, your love<br />
For a night or a weekend, and you laugh with him<br />
He possesses your body and your mind <br />
For a night or a weekend, and you love him<br />
<br />
You thwarted my urging, my encouragement, my pleasure<br />
Until you met him<br />
Now I am warmed by the light of the love he leaves in you<br />
I am lifted by your laugh and electrified by your passion<br />
The taste of your love is my nourishment<br />
A long life of love in the years that remain<br />
Will still prove too short.<br />
I am forever in love when you smile, and in love when you love<br />
And I love when you come home.

It's amazing to me (though I don't know why it should be) how many people are in this situation. Really makes me question whether human beings were even meant to be monogamous their entire lives. I know exactly how you feel, though. My guy actually brought out a part of me I didn't even know I had!

Dorobo,<br />
<br />
That's too funny! You never know, one of us could be your next door neighbor! (just kidding)

Hi Muddy, it's me again. I have been with my love now for four years. He is 64 I am 54. Still we enjoy each other whenever we can get together. I am Catholic so my guilt is horrible. I did speak to my priest about my wanting to have an affair but he told me that my sexless marriage was a "cross" in my life. I'm sorry, but I am a very loving woman and I am sick of my husband giving me excuses for not wanting to even kiss me. I have held this in for too long. I am so much in love with my other man but I wish we could see each other more often. How do you cope?

Hi Joni! Isn't this forum wonderful? It's great to have people in the same situation to talk to and learn from. One of the biggest benefits to me was to find out I wasn't alone, that other good people are involved in relationships like mine as well. I'm not in a sexless marriage, but for me it had become passionless. I wasn't looking for anything, it all sort of just happened, and know I can't imagine being without him. Welcome to the group! <br />
<br />
Anytime you want to talk about anything, we're here for you, and each other.

HI Muddy, I am somewhat in the same boat. I am married 34 years, and living in a completely sexless marriage. In fact, my husband sleeps in another bedroom. I have become very depressed to think that I have absolutely no intimacy in my life, especially since I enjoy being kissed and hugged. I have been with another married man for the past four years. We go away together overnight (I tell my husband I am going away with some friends). These "overnighters" are wonderful! He is 10 years older than I am, and still, he is unable to have an erection. But I really am not concerned about the sex. He gives me all the affection and intimacy that I look for in life. We are so much in love with each other, that he calls my constantly during the day to make sure I am still in love with him! I think it's kind of cute, you know. The guilt? it's there. But what's worse is that there is nobody out there to talk about my affair. I want to shout it out to the world! I will stay with my boyfriend simply because I love him.

couldn't agree with you more, Curiosity! That's exactly how I feel too. Except this is my first time, so I feel especially fortunate to have found something so good right now.

Curiosity - we do sound a like. My boyfriend and I comment on that quite often, how lucky we are, how many people will never experience the joy that we have; men and women both being envious of what we have found in each other. We, too, have so much fun together. In fact, the sexual side of our relationship (which is the best I've ever had) is just a small part of it. We actually spend most of our time doing other things, just being together. I could use the same words you did to describe him. He challenges me to be more, to expand my world from what it was. also like you we exercise meticulous caution and planning as we want this continue for a long time. Some may ask - then why not leave our spouses and be together? I'm sure you also understand it's not as easy as that. We both still love our spouses and our families and aren't willing to break that up. As long as we are on the same page about this, there isn't a conflict. In the meantime, life is grand!

Muddy you do what you feel is right...

Muddy,<br />
<br />
I've read your story, and your posts...<br />
<br />
I haven't told anyone of my affair. Although I'm dying to tell someone of the good times, the doubts, the insecurities with being in a relationship, there just isn't anyone ... I could trust. <br />
<br />
If you have a moment, please read my story, and tell me ... am I just being naive? Just because my lover is loving, it doesn't mean he's in love, right?<br />
<br />
Doubting Gemini...

Your story is similar to mine in some ways. She is also 18 years my younger. We are not as free to meet and it's hard not being able to be with each other as much as we'd like. I'm glad I can communicate with someone and not get the "You should stop immediately" speech.

good call! I didn't even notice that. I'm over 40 as well and I'm definitely not old!! In fact, I feel about 20!

Wolfeyes - "old age tends to make people more content" - Why would you keep thinking that it should be happening to you ALREADY? You are YOUNG!!! I don't think Plato was talking about someone under the age of 40!! I am over 40 and I KNOW I am not OLD!!<br />
<br />
Just had to remark about the Old Thing! : )

I have had my picadillos in the past. Of all of them, only once did I fall in love. While, Muddy, I don't believe you claimed to be falling in love, beware of that aspect.<br />
<br />
I have tried to come to terms with my own behavior- first justifying it by my wife's, then by justifying it by how 'good' I am in all other aspects of my husband/father relationship in my family. I can no longer justify my actions vs. my wife's (we mutually agreed to forgive and forget) so I must only deduce that I am, currently, too weak to resist the temptation of a woman I am attracted to.<br />
<br />
As Plato pointed out, old age tends to make people more content, for they can work/think without the distraction of sex. I keep thinking it'll happen to me, but it hasn't. I do not know if I look forward to such a day, or cringe from it.<br />
<br />
In any event, stay cautious and do as you will.

You bring a good point Dawnraiser and I agree with the sentiments expressed in ee cummings other poem.<br />
You obviously feel these sentiments and I have too, what happens for those who don't? I see many people in relationships where they seemed to have done a "deal" they live together ( often "for the sake of the children") but they don't love together. <br />
The message out there for these situations is "leave and find your true love" and I think this is perhaps right especially if the relationship is destructive to both, but what of those relationships that are not exactly destructive but neither are they creative? <br />
I am just exploring the possibility in these cases that the people in those relationships may need more than one person to spread the load as it were.

Hi, Richard, I don't think we've met before ;-) <br />
I have used rhetoric such as that of the ee cummings poem when discussing schools. I don't think even he meant it to apply to love and partnership. Witness:<br />
<br />
i carry your heart with me(i carry it in<br />
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere<br />
i go you go,my dear; and whatever is done<br />
by only me is your doing,my darling)<br />
i fear<br />
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want<br />
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)<br />
and it's you are whatever a moon has always meant<br />
and whatever a sun will always sing is you<br />
<br />
here is the deepest secret nobody knows<br />
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud<br />
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows<br />
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)<br />
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart<br />
<br />
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart) <br />
<br />
ee cummings <br />
<br />
Also I don't believe it is at all difficult to manipulate our own consciences to allow for what what we want to do at the time. Immediate satisfaction is so often found empty in the longer run. <br />
I also feel responsible for the feelings for others than myself. I am not unusual in this.

Thanks Dawnraiser for bringing in the practical aspects of what happens when we go against as Muddywaters said the "collective thought of a majority " . You are right - when you push against the river some may get hurt . Perhaps the big act of love for your partner would be to know you are capable of intimately loving more than one person but for their sake not to choose that path. For me I would need to be fully aware I was doing it for that reason alone, for love , rather than for "keeping the peace" or not pushing the boundaries.<br />
You are right there are practical reasons to reflect apon but we also have to answer ultimately to our own conscience . They is a great poem by ee cummings that goes <br />
" to be nobody but yourself in a world <br />
which is doing its best night and day<br />
to make you like everybody else<br />
means to fight the hardest battle<br />
any human being can fight<br />
and never stop fighting" <br />
<br />
With love Richard

OK, so I am 66 and this is going to sound like moral advice from an old lady! <br />
It is not. All morality aside, (and I really do mean this)you are risking everything and for what? Have you added up the number of people you will hurt? Your kids stand to be horribly disillusioned about their mom. Then there is your husband who you say you love. His wife? What ill do you wish on her. Do you know what her life is like what it would do to her for the rest of her life when she finds out? Other family members? <br />
Twenty five years with a "Good man" (one who washed the dishes ) with whom you share kids and continuity -- A shared past -- Picture in a few years not being with the one you have the shared memories of raising your children. <br />
Do you realize you could lose your kids over this if (when) it comes out? I do not mean custody, I mean really lose them. <br />
And I ask you again, for what? For a man who wants something extra on the side? <br />
I am sure it is exciting and fun, now. But worth it? You, I am afraid, will find out it was not. If you are not unhappy enough with your husband to divorce him, then I suggest that you work to improve what you have. And sometimes there are times in a marriage when fidelity is what will keep you going. Infidelity is destructive within and with out. Infidelity is poisin. I hope you don't find this out. I did. (probably not how you are thinking) Please be careful and think what you are doing for strictly practical reasons, not moral ones.

another interesting perspective, thank you! I think in this case it's society and the way in which we each were raised that shapes these conceptions. Think about it - thousands of years ago, and even today in some parts of the world - it's normal for a man to have more than one wife. No one thinks it's bad or odd or immoral. For a very long time slavery was a fact of life as well. You lost the war, you became the slaves of the victor. Our society, the collective thought of a majority (or perhaps just the loudest or most insistent) determine what is "normal" and "accepted" and "moral". We buy into it because it's how we were raised and it's extremely difficult to go against something so ingrained in your head. Sex is one of the biggest taboos of all - how many of us were raised to think it's something almost shameful, to be kept secret, shared with only one person ever - your spouse. Centuries ago views of sex were different, that it was a natural ex<x>pression of love and joy, not to be hidden and talked about only in hushed tones. Now, I'm not using any of this to justify my actions or decisions, I made those freely and clearly, knowing what I was doing. But it does bear thinking about, in my opinion.

And the alternative possibility is perhaps one person can never be all we need them to be, that one person can never give us all of what we need. Aside from affairs most of us have a range of relationships that feed us in different ways - why is it that when one of those relationships moves into a sexual relationship it brings up so much - yes the secret nature of an affair is a biggie - but I was thinking about this and noticed most people I know have a secret world inside them, a part of themselves they do not share with their friends or partner - Leonard Cohen wrote a great song about this " In my secret world" . So given most of us have some kind of secret world inside - something we are not judged for , it seems to be accepted - why is it different when we share a part of that secret world with another person ?

Thanks puwalee for your insight and comments. It's good to have a different perspective on things, and you have definitely given me things to think about!

muddywaters<br />
looks like we are friends-- thanks<br />
I can see that you are struggling with your husband's behaviour. You said in your original post that you love him but perhaps you are not so sure? I suspect this uncertainty is adding a lot of the mud in the water. So if I may concentrate on your husband...<br />
First possibility: your husband is already seeing someone else and is giving you a long leash so that he gets one in return.<br />
Second possibility: He is angry with you because he feels that you are not satisfying his needs in some way, but he cannot verbalize it and so expresses it as indifference.<br />
Third possibility: he is giving you a long leash on which to hang yourself. To illustrate this, In my own situation, if I suspected that my wife was seeing someone--which is altogether possible given her behaviour as previously described--I would feel let down, but at the same time I would feel relieved, like a burden had been lifted. In that context, I would encourage her mysterious absences, with the hope that if something was developing, it will take root. I would know that sooner or later she will announce her intention to leave. When she did I would be in a position of moral superiority: "YOU are the one who is walking out..." There may also be financial and custody implications in my favour.<br />
Fourth possibility: he has a hormone imbalance, although this is unlikely because you said somehere that the two of you have a satisfactory if routine sex life together.<br />
Anyway, those are a few thoughts to mull over.

Thanks Puwalee; I appreciate your concern. It's things I have thought of before, as has my lover. However, while I am still very careful and cautious, I see no indication that my husband has any suspicions at all. He questions nothing that I do, when I go out with friends, etc. A few weekends I ago I went out of town with girlfriends to run a half marathon, he didn't even come to the door to say goodbye when my ride arrived. I don't know what to make of it. If the unthinkable were to happen, I know beyond a doubt that my lover would not leave his wife, nor would I ask or expect him to do that. I would have to move on at that point.<br />
<br />
We love each other, but it seems that our love can only exist in this special niche we have carved out for it, and I accept that. Yeah, there are issues and emotions I still have to deal with but it's okay, I'm becoming a stronger person because of it. His age could have a factor in it, he's retired, his wife is nearly retired, they have a very comfortable income. It's a lot to consider.

Muddywaters--<br />
You were my first commenter since I joined EP (Thank you!) so I thought I would return the favour. I am not presently in an extra-marital love affair, but as a dispirited husband of a 30-year marriage I would very much like to be! (See my other story in the Loveless Marriage Group.) In fact I was once in love with a married woman who was 22 years younger than me, but alas she was committed to her marriage and I did not get to first base. But I know how it feels. <br />
I think that by seeking real love you are doing the right thing, but I would be surprised if your husband doesn't already know that something is going on. Sooner or later you will have to deal with him. When he confronts you with it, and if your lover still does not want to leave his wife, what are you going to do? I don't think it will be a very satisfying life for you to move into an apartment in your lover's town and wait for him to come around...although he may not see what the problem is because he would have the best of both worlds. <br />
Dishonesty sucks. I think that the two of you need to bite the bullet and shout out your love to the world asap.<br />
Your lover must be getting on in age...perhaps this is a factor?<br />
Good luck.

I had an affair with an older gentleman before the one I am with now. He taught me everything I know about the being discreet. He was 20 years older so I do understand. He was in a town a few hours away and getting together with both our hectic jobs seemed impossible. He actually found me after his 16 year affair ended and then ditched me for an older woman. LOL Honestly the sex was just ok, I tended to be a bit more daring than he was. However, he still emails every once in awhile to make sure i am doing ok. I never regretted the relationship for a second nor do I feel an ounce of guilt over the passionate one I am in now. I just want to meet more. But that is risky... so I just enjoy the moments we have together now.

I empathize with your situation, although you have come to terms with the reality of your marriage. I am in the sexless marriage forum and don't know your marriage situation. <br />
I was married 3 years when I had an affair with an older man ... by 16 years, went back to my marriage and have been married 40 years. Just reconnected with my past lover, but we talk on the phone only, no sex and I've only seen him twice since November .. this is how he wants it. I would love to be with him all the time and whether that is something that will ever materialize, I don't know. Now I am bound to my marriage and don't have the freedom. I am contemplating divorce because I want to feel alive before I die . even at my age, I am full of desire and longing that my husband doesn't fulfill. We have other communication problems also. I feel that I can relate to your story since I have loved two men at once. I realize that there is no greater joy than to want to be with someone you care about, as opposed as having to be with someone you care about, but not in a sensual way.<br />
<br />
Blessings for continued joy,