That’s how I felt when I found out my husband had an affair.
Sure, at first I wasn’t. The first feelings were rage, resentment, disgust, shock, confusion, numbness and helplessness.
But the bottom line is, when I looked deep down – I was terrified.
Terrified of losing my family, of facing the unknown, of my life falling apart. I felt completely out of control in my own life.
And since I “knew” that there was no way my husband loved me (husbands who love their wife don’t cheat, right?), I felt unloved and alone.
I didn’t understand what exactly I was up against and what I can do to deal with it and heal from it.
What is the Meaning of an Extra Marital Affair?
The Miriam-Webster dictionary defines an extramarital affair as “being sexual intercourse between a married person and someone other than his or her spouse (adulterous).
But I would extend this definition to include emotional affairs, which many times turn to a physically intimate relationship as well.
A broader definition would be a sexual relationship, romantic friendship, or passionate attachment between two people, when one or both of then are married, and without the betrayed partner knowledge.
Why Do Extramarital Affairs Happen?
How would you feel if you KNEW the real reason for your husband’s affair? If you knew what it MEANS about your husband’s character?
How would you feel if you KNEW what to expect to happen next? If you knew whether he will leave you for her? If you knew the odds of saving your marriage?
How would you feel if you knew specifically how to increase the odds of surviving the affair?
You will stop being a victim. You’ll have options to act, feel and think differently. You will regain a tremendous feeling of personal power.
You will truly realize his affair was not your fault. That you are not “defective”. You will have an educated guess as to the outcome of this crisis.
This is what you’ll gain from knowing the 7 types of marital infidelity.
I thought this could be really helpful for you, so here are the 7 affair types (and what to do about them):
The 7 Extramarital Affair Types
When your husband tries to explain his infidelity, which one of these “excuses” did he give you?
1. Our Marriage Made Me Do It
“Our marriage is dead”; “Our marriage is lousy”; this is what you’ll hear from a cheating spouse who believes his marriage “made him” have an affair.
He will claim no intimacy, no sex, and no excitement. He’ll say you’ve grown apart, that nothing is “happening” in your marriage” and thus the affair “just happened”.
2. I Can’t Say No
We all have the capacity to say no. But some of us haven’t developed that capacity or reached the ability to say no and mean it. They are “stuck” and seem unable to be consistent to act on the “no”.
His history, personal development and internal “blocks” play a role here.
3. I Don’t Want to Say No
Some people just don’t want to say no, whether they admit it or not. They believe they just don’t have to. Here the old term of “philanderer” applies.
These people’s relationships are marked by a serious of sexual conquests and they live for the thrill of the score.
Was your husband like this BEFORE you were married? Chances are he never really changed.
4. I Feel Out of Love (and I Love Being Loved)
According to Dr. Huizenga, this is more common for young couples, the mid or late 30s or younger.
Usually, the cheater reports “falling out of love” and is truly disturbed by this “shift”.
He wants to recapture feeling in love (a feeling which always fades) and has, by chance, found a significant other who has awakened these feelings again so he feels “in love” again.
These people will not settle for a less than ideal relationship, which means, of course, feeling the “love feelings”.
5. I Want to Get Back at Her
This is the revenge affair. It happens in a marriage in which the cheater feels slighted in some manner and looks for revenge by engaging in an affair.
This type of affair is less about moving towards the other woman and more about moving away from his spouse.
6. I Need to Prove My Desirability
Most of us are pretty shaky when it comes to our sexuality, let’s face it. How can we measure up to the models on TV and in magazines, ever?
This affair type has to do with the degree to which the cheater feels wanted. After “familiarity” sets into a marriage, self-doubts can be rekindled easily.
If your spouse doesn’t understand the stages of marital growth and lacks a core sense of self-esteem, he becomes easy prey to confusion and disenchantment.
7. I Want to Be Close To Someone
It seems that marriage is like an endless dance. We move close to try to be as one and after a while, we move apart to claim our own space and uniqueness.
Intimacy is the ability to move comfortably between joining together and individual expression. This affair type applies to those who want to get close to someone, other than or instead of, his spouse.
However, a relationship with a 3rd party is never intimate. And this is exactly what the cheater subconsciously wants. To NOT be intimate with anyone.
What Do the Affair Types Mean?
Each of these affair types has different motives, patterns, and characteristics.
For example, the “philanderer” affair type demands different actions than the “I want to Get Back at Her” affair type.
Once you’ve identified the affair type in your marriage, you will feel the first “wave” of relief.
The reason I recommend this to you is the bottom line. The bottom line is no more fear. No more helplessness and loss of control.
You are no more a victim. No more feeling like you’re frozen in time.
Knowledge is a relief, hope and power. And power means having options.
And you need it now. Before this crisis destroys you (and I’m sure it threatens to already).
Rooting for ya,