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envidula61's avatar

Most incredible person you ever met vs your husband?

Asked by envidula61 (1011points) June 14th, 2011

It’s midlife. Your kids are 15 and 10. You own your house and car. You have substantial amounts saved for retirement.

You meet someone and, not expecting it to happen, fall in love. In every way, you are matched well and when you are together, he makes everything seem perfect.

You can see each other but rarely. You aren’t satisfied with that. He, it becomes clear after a while, is making every effort to patch up his marriage. His wife caught him and they’ve been in counseling. But he doesn’t want to give up you. So he’s still sneaking around trying to contact you without being caught by his wife who is watching his every move.

You see that your lover probably won’t ever give up his marriage and won’t give you enough of his time. Much as you love him, you decide to try to cut it off. You ask for a two-week separation, which is granted, although he is protesting he will miss you every second of every day. He gave in very easily.

You want to be able to cut it off completely after the two weeks, although you know that will hurt you greatly. You, too, have a marriage that is not that great. You would rather not end the marriage, but you are also desperately unhappy, and your lover was perfect for you.

Should you cut off the lover and stay in the unhappy marriage and hold on to all that you have accumulated and be able to bring your kids up?

Should you wait for your lover to maybe get sick of his wife and come to you?

Should you kill herself for being such an awful person? Or if not kill, punish yourself by cutting yourself off from everyone you love?

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34 Answers

Aethelwine's avatar

Cut off the lover and either try to repair your marriage or get out of it. Then you can move on to someone else.

Messing with another married person is just wrong.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

First and foremost, I’d leave my marriage. If someone out there gives you a glimpse of a life that is better than what you’ve been dealing with, it’s time to go. Secondly, if your lover really wants to work it out with him wife, I’d leave him too. It might be a scary time for a bit, but life is short.

creative1's avatar

When your in a marriage you work through your issues as best you possibly can. I wouldn’t throw away a marriage for what seems to be what looks like the grass is greener on the other side. I would personally never have persued anything with anyone unless my marriage was over and I was divorced. But this is me, I believe it trying to work through issues rather than thinking what the other person has next door is better because that isn’t the truth.

missingbite's avatar

Is this the same person you are stripping for online?

Hibernate's avatar

You either start fighting for you relation with your husband or you tell your kids that you are tired of their father and want something fresh.

Pandora's avatar

Heres the funny thing. I bet in the beginning you thought your husband and you were a perfect match in everyway. You are simply romanticizing your relationship with him. It has that whole Romeo and Juliet thing. Star crossed lovers who’s love is forbidden. I bet in the beginning of his marriage everything seemed perfect as well. You want what you can’t have and so does he. If both of you hooked up, I bet after 10 to 15 years of raising kids and paying bills and aging, he won’t seem like Romeo any more or you like Juliet.
I hate to sound harsh but its time you work on the real problem instead of running away from it.
Work on your marriage. Or did you not mean what you said in your vows. For better or for worse? Your husband cannot give you what you need if you don’t tell him. Now provided he isn’t some asshole or abuser of you and the kids verbally or physically or an alcoholic or have some mental problems that make it extremely difficult to live with him, than you should do all you can to save your family.
We tend to make our own miseries in life. Right now you are tormenting yourself by trying to live in this fantasy world. You and he will get together and all will be right with the world. That is not how it works. Both of you are people who take the shortcut to happiness and damn the other person. The moment one of you would become unhappy, you will move on to the next person who makes you feel special.
Remember its easy to make someone feel special for a few hours each week simply by smiling and also because is only a few hours. However eventually real life will get in the way and suddenly its not so easy to make a person feel special ALL the time because your together more than you are apart.
I always find it funny when spouses say my spouse doesn’t make me feel special any more. I always wonder when was the last time they made and effort to make their spouse feel special.

derekfnord's avatar

I recently went through a situation similar to this, and here is my best advice:

1. Concentrate on you and your marriage first. Settle that before pursuing anything further with someone else.

2. Ask yourself whether you would want your marriage to continue if it does improve. If you would, then ask yourself whether you think it can improve, and be honest with yourself. If you do, then work on that until it either improves as needed, or you decide it can’t improve.

3. If you get to the point that you don’t think your marriage can improve to where you need it to be, then ask yourself, “Would I be happier in my marriage or alone?” Try really hard not to think, “Would I be happier in my marriage or with this other person?”

Because it’s not fair to anyone—not your husband, not your kids, not your lover, and not you—to look at it as trading a real-world situation, where the challenges and struggles are known, for a largely unknown potential other relationship, where you can imagine it will be anything you want to imagine. Realities will always lose comparisons to fantasies, so it’s not fair to make them.

Don’t look at the best case scenario (“I could be so happy with him!”); look at the worst case scenario (“I could end up alone.”) Then, if you still want to go, then you know you’re being honest about it.

janbb's avatar

What do you think? Read what you wrote; the answer is clear.

JLeslie's avatar

Drop the lover and work on your marriage. When you focus on it, and decide in your mind you want your marriage to be better and more fufilling it might just happen. If the marriage is not going to work, then deal with getting out of it. It will be hard at first, because it seems you will go through a grieving process when you leave your lover, so putting your best effort forward with your husband might take a little time.

I wanted to add, if your husband is a bad person, then just forget the marriage, but if he has integrity, wants to be married to you, and is willing to listen to your needs and do better, and you were at least at one time sexually attracted to him, don’t give that up too fast, give it a chance. My advice would be different if you wanted to be single, a big life change of some sort that conventional marriage might be incompatable, but you are going to go from one marriage basically to another, just changing the partner.

Plus, you really have no choice, he is not leaving his wife. You are just a side thing. He is not perfect for you.

marinelife's avatar

You have no right to have a lover. You are breaking your vows.

You need to work on the marriage and give it a fair shot or break it off. Then you are free to engage in other relationships.

_zen_'s avatar

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: adultery is wrong – everyone loses.

dannyc's avatar

Love and logic never seem to go together. I really think it is your life, but I would recommend to be thoughtful as to minimize the bad part of any decision. Since this happens so frequently today, some new arrangements are probably going to occur in future generations to account for this. I would imagine most today if asked will doubt this, but it is happening before our eyes. Lifelong marriage with one partner will soon become the minority. It is a simple fact.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

“Most incredible person you have ever met” rarely is. Just seems that way. New and exciting vs a marriage in a rut is always going to appear incredible, perfect, otherworldly. That’s how infatuation works.
Having said that – don’t stay in a marriage out of convenience or habit. Do it because you believe it can work, otherwise, get out.

BarnacleBill's avatar

The problem is you. Other people will not make you happy; you are responsible for yourself. People who pass the responsibility for their happiness to others will never be happy.

Haleth's avatar

Have you tried looking at the lover in a more objective light? The only thing you tell us here is that he’s perfect for you, that he wants to repair his marriage, and that you don’t get to spend enough time together. If he was really perfect for you, then the feeling would be mutual. Someone who is unavailable or only semi-available can’t be perfect for you.

I know what it’s like to feel head-over-heels for someone. It’s a heady and potent feeling, and being around that person can start to feel like an addiction. That’s because, in a way, it actually is an addiction. Falling in love causes all these chemical changes in your system; it floods your brain with chemicals like dopamine, adrenaline, and oxytocin, which can give you feelings like elation, comfort, and excitement. One side effect is that you tend to idealize the person. Of course there’s a lot more to it than that, but if you’re getting all these feelings from a lover and not from your spouse, the spouse can seem to pale in comparison.

Another thing to think about is that people always want something more when it is scarce. If you get an emotional rush from being with a lover, and rarely get to see him, being with him starts to take on an increased urgency and importance. If you could see him whenever you wanted, you might not feel the same way toward him.

Going from your text alone, I agree with people above who say that you should leave both the lover and your husband.

You see that your lover probably won’t ever give up his marriage and won’t give you enough of his time. Much as you love him, you decide to try to cut it off. You ask for a two-week separation, which is granted, although he is protesting he will miss you every second of every day. He gave in very easily.

He sounds false. If he is really going to “miss you every second of every day,” then he should be taking steps to leave his wife, or at the very least he shouldn’t give into a trial separation so easily. Is he prone to saying things like this often?

”...desperately unhappy…”

That’s your answer to the question of the marriage. Ending your relationship with both of these men will be very hard in the short term, but it won’t punish you. It will free you.

desiree333's avatar

I think you genuinely need to try and repair your marriage before pursuing this affair to the point where there is no turning back. My parents separated when I was young because my mother was “in love” with a man. They end up getting married and having a child, my sister. The relationship becomes abusive, she divorces him, and is now a single parent. Ever since, she has consistently been with other men, one after the other. Each time he seems to be all she focuses on and is “in love.”

I really hope this man is worth the pain your family will endure if you end the marriage. Do what makes you happy, but please consider all others who will be affected, to say the least.

Please don’t punish yourself, just reflect a lot on your decision and don’t be rash. (it doesn’t sound like you are being impulsive anyways). Good luck.

desiree333's avatar

@Haleth I completely agree, she should probably leave both men.

Haleth's avatar

@desiree333 I’m sorry you had to go through that. My mother dated after her divorce, but my sister and I only met two of the men over the course of about 10 years. She waited until she was serious and certain before introducing them to us, and I’m very grateful for that. It must have been tough dealing with all that instability.

desiree333's avatar

@Haleth Thank you, it was tough and I’m sad to say my mother hasn’t changed even though she has been in a solid relationship for almost a year now.

I am just concerned the love @envidula61 feels for this man is just infatuation because it is new and exciting compared to her boring marriage. I’m sure she felt the same thing when she first dated her now husband. I think she needs to re-discover that love and try to work things out. A rut (which is what it sounds like) should not be mistaken for a dead-end relationship.

seekingwolf's avatar

You’re emotionally cheating with another man. Sorry to hear that your marriage sucks but it’s wrong and unfair to both your hubby and yourself to be involved with this man in any intimate way, emotional (beyond friendship) or physical.

Cut off the lover and work on your marriage or leave it to find someone else. I can promise you, the only reason why you’re falling for this guy is because your marriage sucks. You aren’t getting what you need and instead of working things out, your eyes are wandering. It’s wrong and while I’m not excusing it, I’m offering an explanation.

If you just cut off the lover and NOT work on your marriage, then I can promise it’s gonna happen all over again, with someone else. There’s nothing special about this guy…he’s no prize. He’s emotionally cheating with his wife. You’re only fawning over him because you’re not getitng what you need from your current partner.

Haleth's avatar


I am just concerned the love @envidula61 feels for this man is just infatuation because it is new and exciting compared to her boring marriage. I’m sure she felt the same thing when she first dated her now husband.

I agree with you there. It sounds like the exciting, honeymoon phase of a new relationship.

I think she needs to re-discover that love and try to work things out. A rut (which is what it sounds like) should not be mistaken for a dead-end relationship.

Could be true. I think “desperately unhappy” is a pretty strong choice of words, and there’s definitely a long road to recovery, if recovery is possible. But personally, I wouldn’t want to stay in a relationship where I felt that way and I wouldn’t wish that on another person.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Let the lover go because he’s going to stay with his wife.

Let your husband go because you’re unhappy enough to cheat on him and chance losing everything you think is important. You went this far, you’ll do again and maybe things will blow up badly. Best to part now as kindly as possible. .

Cruiser's avatar

Honey is that you?? XD If every effort is and has been made to discover what you want out of life and you know this then just do it, but stringing along spouses and lover or allowing yourself to be led along is not doing you or anyone else in this mish mash any favors.

mrrich724's avatar

End both relationships. In fact, they should all be ended, on both sides.

Kardamom's avatar

Ok, ok, I’m guilty of having not read some of your other questions ahead of time. I should have done that. You’ve been involved in some seriously crappy sh*t and you don’t seem to “get it.”

Married people should never get involved with other people until their marriages are dissolved legally!. Ever. I don’t give a crap how much you say you love this other man or how much he loves you, you are just acting like horny, desperate teenagers without thinking about any of the consquences or how it truly effects other people. You reek of desperation and immaturity.

Break it off with the other man. Have a frank talk with you husband and get into couples counseling immediately! Get a regular therapist for yourself and figure out how come you are so insecure and so immature, and learn to grow up and act like an adult.

envidula61's avatar

Once again, this is not about me, @Kardamom, so I would appreciate it if you address your answers to the question, not me.

Second, what’s wrong with acting like horny desperate teenagers? Does it make a difference if this couple is in their 20s or 40s or 50s or 60s?

Third, why do you make the blanket judgement that married people should get involved with others until they dissolve their marriages legally? Is that useful advice given the real world behavior of human beings?

Well, you say you don’t give a crap about the feelings of the characters in this question. Why, might I ask, are you bothering to answer it? You sound frustrated. Judging by the vehemence of your response, I’d have to say you were lying and you give far more than a crap about these people. Have you been on the receiving end of this kind of situation? If so, would you please talk about your experience instead of making unhelpful judgmental comments about other people.

seekingwolf's avatar


As soon as you agree to enter into a monogamous, exclusive relationship with someone, you need to stop acting like a “horny desperate teenager”. What do horny desperate teenagers do? They cheat. You can’t do that in a monogamous relationship because it is harmful to your partner in so many ways. Age doesn’t matter. I’m 21 and my boyfriend is 20 but it’s just as wrong for me or my boyfriend to cheat compared to an “older” couple in their 40s or so. This is because both couples are in a monogamous relationship and that agreement should be respected. You can’t just give people a free pass because of their age.

If you want to act that way, you need to find someone who would be willing to have an open relationship with you and thus would be fine with it. Or stay single and swing. But don’t get into a monogamous relationship and then cheat just because it’s “natural”. That’s total BS.

And yeah, married people should not get involved with others until they are either divorced or separated (read: living in separate houses, NOT involved, and doing the paperwork) and they should be open with their new partners about the status of their divorce, if pending. It’s really not that hard. People need to keep it in their pants. With my last ex, I was very unhappy for months before I split from him and in a few days, I decided to date my current boyfriend. There was no “overlap” of contact or emotional “cheating” and I was open with him about everything. If you just can’t keep it in your pants and you simply MUST have another partner before you end the first relationship, then you should at least do your soon-to-be ex the favour of telling them so.

Kardamom's avatar

@envidula61 Re-read my statement: I don’t give a crap how much you say you love this other man or how much he loves you

I never said that I didn’t care about the people in this situation at all. I answered your question because I do care about all kinds of people. I’ve seen plenty of people get themselves into all sorts of ugly trouble and hurt many other people (spouses, children, friends) by doing this kind of sh*t. So yes, I do think that people need to end one relationship before they get into another one. Our society wouldn’t have all of the ugly social problems it does, if they followed that rule. It’s not that difficult to be considerate of one’s current partner by ending that relationship before taking up with someone else. Yes, I do realize that plenty of people don’t employ that kind of consideration, but that is why our society has so many problems. Selfishness mixed with horniness and lack of maturity cause all sorts of problems in our society.

And yes, I do think there is a problem if adults act like horny, desperate teenagers, because that kind of behavior leads to all of the ugly problems that young people sometimes find themselves in, due to their lack of maturity. When people grow up and gain knowledge, information, maturity and wisdom, they have the “choice” to act responsibly, whereas young teenagers often don’t, simply because they don’t know any better and can’t visualize or imagine the potential consquences.

No one is saying that adults cannot have lustful, passionate relationships, but along with adulthood also comes responsibility (to themselves, their children, their families, their friends and society).

Plus what’s the deal with all of your questions being hypothetical? Are you conducting some type of research experiment? And why not state clearly in your questions that they are hypothetical? Most people reading your questions are going to think that the questions are about you, unless you state otherwise.

envidula61's avatar

@Kardamom Let’s say that both parties had spent a good deal of time in therapy. At least one of their therapists never took the position that the behavior was wrong or should be stopped. The therapist’s main concern was for the person’s children. I.e., she tried to be helpful by helping the person to not get caught. In other words, she didn’t judge the client’s behavior.

The person loves their spouse and children. But there are problems in the relationship. The person also loves their lover. They want to do right by their family and of course most people would tell the person to give up the lover, and they’ll do it in a very judgmental way.

The person also have never been happier than when they are with the lover. Who knows? Maybe it’s just an infatuation. Maybe it could last. Who has the power to know if something is “real” or not?

The person have discussed having an open relationship with their spouse, but that’s a non-starter. The person will be low level miserable for life if they give up the lover. They will be probably more miserable—maybe even dangerously miserable—if they get a divorce. Therapy does not have answers for these issues. People do, but the kind of answers most people give are not helpful because they only makes the person feel even more trapped.

The person is convinced that they needs both SOs and sees that as the ideal solution, except of course, it’s not a very possible solution. The person is not Mormon nor Muslim. Does anyone believe the person’s assessment that they need both? Or do people believe that the person is fooling themselves, or immature, or sick? Is it possible for answerers to think outside the box in being helpful to the questioner?

janbb's avatar

If these questions are all hypothetical. why are you so invested in them?

envidula61's avatar

@janbb Personal reasons.

Kardamom's avatar

@envidula61 It is you that needs to see outside the box of this sick little reality you call home. You (I’m sorry, the fake you) are married and your husband (or your fake husband) has already stated that he believes/wants to be in a monogamous relationship. You have two choices, you can continue to lie to your husband (fake husband) and cheat on him with your lover (fake lover) or you can get a divorce.

You (or the fake you) seems to be under the impression that a therapist can’t help you. If you go into therapy with that attitude, then you (or the fake you) is absolutely correct. I think it was very unethical of the therapist to attempt to get you (or the fake you) to hide/continue the affair. That therapist was a willing party to helping you commit adultery. So part of the problem is that you (or the fake you) needs to find a different (competent) therapist. Sometimes you have to try out more than one that is not only helpful, but reputable.

You (or the fake you) do not want to solve this problem in a manner that is reponsible or ethical. You (or the fake you) just want to have fun, and be passionate and lustful without taking responsibility for the consequences of how this creepy, desperate situation is effecting your children and your husband. By continuing to lie to your husband and sneak around with your lover, you are not allowing your husband the choice to divorce you which is exactly what he (or the fake he) would most likely do, if he knew that you like to have multiple male partners. Nobody’s stopping you (or the fake you) from having multiple partners. Unmarried people do that all the time. But your husband (God bless him) thinks he is in a monogamous union with you and has stated that he does not want an open marriage. I think that is pretty clear. But he is getting scr*wed over by you (or the fake you).

People want all sorts of things in life that they cannot have, so don’t say to us that you can’t live with out having both of these men in your life, that’s greedy thinking. Eventually this whole mess is going to blow up in your face, but the damage has already been done.

Your best bet is to find a new therapist, or ask your parents or your doctor or a clergy person or a non-crazy friend for some help, because you (or the fake you) desperately need help. There is no magical solution for this problem, you just have to do the right thing. Unfortunately, because you are living in this dream world (a box of your own making), you are not likely to recognize what the right thing is.

And it would probably be helpful if you took some of the good and sensible advice that all of the Flutherers are giving you rather than trying to squeeze blood from a turnip.

Aethelwine's avatar

The person will be low level miserable for life if they give up the lover. They will be probably more miserable—maybe even dangerously miserable—if they get a divorce.

This is a sign of a very unhealthy relationship. Only you can make yourself happy. Hoping someone will come along to provide you happiness will only make you, and everyone around you, miserable.

This person in your hypothetical situation is not being fair to the husband. Let the poor man go so he can finally be happy, and then this woman can go screw all the men she thinks will make her happy, just advise her to not marry again, please.

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