Sunday, September 23, 2018
Parenting & Relationships

Tell Me About It: Wife clings to the intrigue of her past affair

Q: I cheated on my husband. I have no excuse. I confessed and cut contact with the other man, whom I had met a month earlier.

At least I tried to. He's managed to stay in my life through various social media accounts, which he often uses to speak to me indirectly. When I have asked him to delete these accounts, he does, but they inevitably pop up again.

The big problem is that I am flattered and intrigued by all of this. I developed strong feelings for him that have yet to wane. He thinks he loves me and wants to spend the rest of his life with me, but I think he's just unhappy and clinging to the otherness that I offer. Still, I wonder . . .

All of this has made it difficult to repair things with my husband, though I am trying. I don't think there's much I can do about the other guy, short of telling his wife, which wouldn't end well for anyone. So I need to find a way to put on blinders and begin the internal process of getting over this silly affair. Any advice on how to do this, when the other guy is still so there?

Ending Infidelity

A: Unless your livelihood depends on social media, you don't need to be on it. Therefore, you can delete your accounts.

Please also see that you're "flattered and intrigued" because you want to be flattered and intrigued. Take it from someone not blinded by him: His actions aren't just wrong, they're icky-wrong. He's being horrible to his wife and he's ignoring your requests that he leave you alone.

If he truly loved you, then he'd separate from his wife and stop contacting you, because that's the honest, selfless thing for each. He has done neither.

You're hampered, meanwhile, by your unhappiness, which left you vulnerable to flattery and "clinging to . . . otherness." So get offline and get into the office of a reputable therapist. Explore, responsibly, what's really going on.

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