Just Finished An Emotional Affair...part One

My story began a long time ago.  In 1973 in fact when I first met the girlfriend of my best friend.  I had always felt awkward and shy around girls before but not with *****.  I felt so comfortable just being around her, she felt the same, and we connected easily.  At parties, I'd sit with her the whole time while her boyfriend "worked the room", which she hated.

A few times, we had the opportunity to be alone, all we did was sit next to each other and talk, sometimes till dawn.  Never kissed, never held hands, all I ever did was stroke her gorgeous red hair.  She was my best friend's girlfriend, and we both knew that.

She'd been with him for 4 years, though we were both 19, and within a few months, she broke up with him.  It was important to her that he wouldn't think it was because of me, and she wanted to meet some new friends, not hang around with the same old crowd.  Coincidentally, she began a new job within a few blocks of where I worked at the time, and one lunch hour, we bumped into each other.  I then "arranged" to bump into her again, and we began spending our lunch hours together on a regular basis, until again she wanted to meet others.

Well, within a few weeks, I was no longer "bumping" into her, and I later met her new boyfriend whom she married within a year.  That was the end back in 1974.

I married someone else in 1978 and we've been together ever since, moving across the continent to the West Coast in the mid-80s - 3000 miles away from *****. 

Then 10 years ago, on a business trip back east, I called ***** up, and stopped by her home.  She opened the door and greeted me with a HUGE hug, arms around me neck.  Needless to say, 25 years after last seeing her, I was caught off guard.  She was still married, so was I, we talked for about an hour, and I left.  I remember crying on the plane as I left for home the next day.

Forward to October 2008....35 years after I first met *****.  I spot a woman, that from behind, is exactly how I remember *****.  So I get out of my car and start walking towards her, realizing that my heart is beating wildly.  What if it is *****?

It wasn't, I remember relief and disappointment all at the same time.  But the thought of my beating heart stayed with me and within a couple of days, I called ***** (she works as a school secretary and googling her name brought up her work phone number).  She was obviously very happy to hear from me and within a few minutes, I learned she was divorced, and seeing another guy.  We agreed to exchange emails, and so began our emotional affair.

Part Two later today...

 

Part Two

S o we began emailing and I quickly realized that one of the reasons I contacted her again was to fix an old wrong.  Back in 1973, I never told her how I felt about her.  Never told her that I loved her.  I let her go too easily and I wanted to correct that.  I wanted her to know, 35 years later, that I loved her then and I still loved her now.

 

So that came out quite quickly in our emails.  She had been with a guy for about a year but was having doubts about the relationship.  I'd been faithfully married for over 30 years.  We didn't talk too much about my marriage , but she and I talked a lot about her relationship with her boyfriend.

We soon began exchanging many emails every day - with a 3 hour time difference between us - I'd email late at night, she'd respond early morning, and I'd have her response when I woke up.  I began awakening early, anticipating a new email.  It didn't take long for me to be thinking about her constantly.  What I would write to her next, what she might say about my last email.  I thought of her all day long, fell asleep thinking about her, woke up during the night thinking about her.

I had seen her once, for one hour, in 35 years and I found myself deeply in love with her.  She was more cautious in telling me how she felt, she worried about "leading me on" when we both knew, from the start, that there was no future for us.  I wasn't prepared to leave my family and she didn't want me to.  But as we did in 1973, we enjoyed each other's company so much that we kept up the emailing.

We made each other laugh and feel good.  But by January, I began to realize how difficult this was on me.  I was not eating, losing weight, not sleeping, not concentrating on my job as I should.  All I wanted was to be in touch with her.  We even began emailing each other at work and setting up times when we could be online at the same time and chat via email.

It occurred to me one morning that I had to end this.  Then a couple of days later, she sent me an email with a subject line that read "I need you".  She had just discovered that her boyfriend was seeing another woman and she was devastated.  For the next several weeks, I supported her and helped get through the pain. 

Our relationship deepened and I was so grateful that I could be there to help her.  We even spoke on the phone a few times and I was delighted to hear her voice and sometimes make her laugh.  We started asking each other what it might be like if we met, perhaps just for a cup of coffee .

So I hatched a plan, I was able to convince my wife that I should return to my hometown (where ***** lived) on my own to visit my family.  And somehow, I ended up picking a week when ***** was not working.  We could have 4 days together!

***** agreed to meet me and I booked my flights.  But I was never sure she would actually go through with it.  Every day I expected an email from her that would say she wouldn't be there.  There were several times when she expressed doubts and those days were very difficult for me.  All I wanted was to see her and that's all I could think about for days and days.

By now she had started seeing someone else and she had real concerns about seeing me, stilling thinking about the ex who cheated on her, and trying to make a new relationship work.  But a week or two before I my trip, she emailed me "run away with me".  She had realized that "I was the one" and she thought about running away with me.  Not entirely seriously, because she really didn't want me to leave my family, but she told me what I had wanted to hear.  "I was the one".

Even up to the day of my flight, I wasn't sure she'd be there to see me.  But she was, and we spent 2 amazing days together.  No sex, just talking, hugging, holding hands .  In the car, on the couch at her house, and an amazing dinner out together where we both dressed up and she looked absolutely sensational - better than I even remembered her 35 years ago.

Two people, old friends, now very much in love.  But we knew these two days would be our last. We agreed this couldn't go on.  There was no future for us together, and staying in touch made it too difficult on our relationships with our partners.

I didn't spend the night at her house - we had agreed that I would stay in a hotel.  The next morning I woke her and she greeted me in PJs and a robe and I loved it.  She was comfortable enough with me to do that.  We went out for a late breakfast and knowing it was our last few hours together, we spent the entire day on the couch at her house.  Sitting next to each other and as the day progressed, closer and closer.  At one point, she stretched out her legs and put them over mine.  I'll never forget that she was trusting enough, affectionate enough, and loving enough to do that.  As I did in 1973, I stroked her hair, a lot.  I touched her cheek, held her hands, and cried a few times.  She stroked my hair, and she cried too.

We agreed that I would leave at 10pm.  We both knew we'd likely never see each other again.  I had thought that I would be more emotional than she would be, but actually, she cried more than I did, more than I thought she would at the end.  I told her as I left that maybe this ending was really the beginning of the best relationship yet, the one she had just started.  And as difficult as that is for me to think about, I really hope that is true.  That this new guy in her life, makes her happy.  I had told her that if he can make her half as happy as I know she could be with me, she'll be very happy indeed.

The next day, alone in my hotel room, I was a mess.  Deep sobbing, looking at her pictures on my laptop, listening to Frank Sinatra sing Just the Way you Look Tonight.  I left the hotel and walked down a busy downtown street, tears in my eyes, crying.  I stopped at a Starbucks, barely able to order my drink, then spent 45 mins crying quietly with my coffee.

35 years of waiting to see her again, and I had, but it sure hurt like hell knowing I'll likely never ever see her again.

Yet those two days with her I think were the best two days of my life.  I had thought about those two days for a couple of months, building them up to likely unrealistic expectations.  But she was amazing.  We connected so easily, so deeply, so quickly.  Those two days were way beyond what I had dreamt they would be.

She had asked me to email when I got back to let her know I got home safely.  But in my email to her, I told her I just couldn't say I'm OK and leave it at that.  We had agreed to end it, but I needed one more email.  She was OK with that and suggested that maybe we didn't have to end it after all.  So my next email recounted my joy at the 2 days together and thanked her for letting me see her, touch her, hug her, and asked her how she felt.  But in her next email, she told me that the new guy in her life had just told her he loved her, and she couldn't respond.  She felt terrible about that and she said we had to find a way "to put this behind us".

I knew now it was over.  It had to be.  So I emailed her .... "Go to ***.  Give him all you've got.  Let him make you happy.  If you ever need me again, for anything, I'll be here.  But unless you really want to, don't email me back.  I'll understand completely.  I'll always have so much love for you".

That was 4 days ago.  I haven't heard from her since.  I've cried a lot since then, but I know it's best for her and for me this way.

I met her 35 years ago.  I kept her in my heart all that time.  Now I know that she feels the same way about me.  And though I'll likely never see her again, never hear her delightful voice again, never see her beautiful face again, never touch her softness again, never ever play with her fabulous hair again, I did get to be with her for 2 glorious days.  2 whole days of joy, happiness, and an unbelievable connection that will last for the rest of my life.

Worth all the tears in the world.  Goodbye *****.  You'll always be with me.

 

 

3deweys 3deweys
51-55
5 Responses Mar 12, 2009

It appears I am about to enter into an emotional affair myself. <br />
<br />
Considering it to be precise. We grew up in the same town and he was 13 and I was 14. He never told me how he felt then but I knew he felt something. Now, 24 years later, we are friends on facebook and chatting everyday. He has told me he wants to have a relationship with me. I asked what kind of a relationship and he said he wants to be a vey close friend, no physical contact. He is married, no kids and he lives in another state, different town zones etc. I am divorced and he knows I have no one at the moment. I asked how he would feel should I meet someone and he said he can't guarantee he wouldn't get jealous because he still loves me although he just wants us to be friends. He is coming on a business trip in my state and I fear what may happen. I have strong feelings for him but I know I can't do it. I want him in my life in some way but at the same time I don't want to be THAT WOMAN, is this possible. Should we just agree to let go. He is everything I want in a man and we click in everyway. I tell him things that I could never tell anyone and he does tell me his fears and ambitions in life. Deep stuff. Do you think I should just pull the plug now. I have these deep feelings for him.

I really know exactly how you feel. My first love called me this past summer after 36 years. We reconnected and was talking daily for about 8 months. At last I knew that he had thought about me, and loved me like I had loved him. At the time he was living away from wife and family, but I was living with my husband of 36 years. All communication was kept secret from our spouses and we had planned on meeting. Then his wife found I think some phone records and that preety much was the end of everything. We had never planned on leaving mates, but I had really wanted to see him. I still think of him often and I question if my life will ever be the same again. I think he will always be the love of my life, but we neither want to hurt others. Just wish he had given me a last good by. Maybe there was just too much to lose. I guess I'm still not sorry we reconnected. Our reconnection was one of the most exciting times of my life, regardless of the outcome.

Thank you so much for sharing this, I am in an emotional affair now and I'm am struggling with what I should do. I want so desperately to remain friends but that is proving to be extremely difficult to do. I never knew I could feel like this and at the same time be in so much pain.<br />
I'm curious if you have been in contact with each other since this post.

how do you feel all those years later?

you just left me in absolute tears - i know how you feel. happy and painful. just hard wondering what's the point of it all your heart gets is two days of joy. i wish i had the 2 days...but i would always want more.