4 Reasons Why You Can’t Get Over The Man You're Having An Affair With

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4 Reasons Why You Can’t Get Over "The Other Man"

When the lines between fantasy and reality are blurred.

When it comes to women who have affairs, there is typically a strong emotional component to the relationship. Even if she wants to reconcile her marriage, women often have a very difficult time breaking off the relationship with the affair partner.  

What you believed to be lacking in your marriage, you found elsewhere. There is a grieving process surrounding losing the relationship with your affair partner that not many people are comfortable admitting to or talking about. You don't know why you can't stop thinking about another man.

I feel so much compassion for where you are right now because it seems like there is no right answer. Here are 4 reasons why you can't get over the man you're having an affair with:

1. Your head and your heart are at odds. 

Your head is telling you that logically, you should act, feel, and be in love with your husband. That is where your loyalty should lie. It’s telling you that your feelings towards your affair partner are wrong and selfish. This is not news to you.

Your heart, though, wants to throw caution to the wind. What really feels wrong is being apart from your affair partner. Your heart is entrenched in the fantasy and desperately searching for its next fix and it can feel like you are climbing the walls until you can see each other again.  

This is the part that makes you question everything you know. It makes you wonder if you married the wrong person and if you could ever really go back to your marriage.

How could something that feels so good be so bad? How do you move forward? Who do you choose?

2. The other man is still an option for you. 

When you feel like you can’t get over the other man, the actual struggle is trying to break free from the hope of what could be. You can drive yourself insane over a potential future with someone.

At some level, there is a part of you that believes a life with your affair partner is still possible. Maybe you want to keep him as a Plan B if reconciling with your husband does not work out.   

You could also secretly (or not-so-secretly) wish that things were different in your life so that the two of you could be together. If it weren’t for certain obstacles or logistics such as finances, your kids, or a nasty divorce, you would jump into his arms without a second thought.

You constantly compare the relationship with your affair partner with the relationship with your husband. You can’t imagine your husband ever making you feel the way the other man did. The thought of living without that kind of passion feels unbearable.

3. You put the other man on the highest pedestal you could find. 

In your eyes, your affair partner is a character out of a Nicholas Sparks novel. He can do no wrong. He says and does all the right things. He speaks your love language so you constantly feel loved and cared for. You feel valued, admired, and he attends to your every need. You are his priority.

If he does not encompass all of these things, you truly believe that if you were able to just have a real relationship with him that was official and out in the open, then that is exactly how your life with him would be.   

What happens when life gets in the way? What would happen if you had to share a household with your affair partner? Would there still be just as much passion if you both had to schedule carpool and football practice? Would the other man still be so perfect when he left his dirty underwear on the floor and forgot to unload the dishwasher?

I, wholeheartedly, believe that secrecy is the crux of an affair. Once the relationship is official and out in the open, the passion will dwindle. That’s just the nature of the beast.  

4. You and your husband are at each other's throats. 

It’s quite possible that your marriage has been less than satisfying for a while now. While people in happy marriages can and do have affairs, the majority of women who have extramarital affairs report dissatisfaction in their marriage.

Assuming your husband knows about your affair and the disclosure occurred recently, it probably looks like a war zone in your house.

How are you supposed to get over the other man when you still feel like you are in love with him and reconcile with a husband who is not exactly your biggest fan at the moment?

As I noted in this blog post, the first 3 months of the affair recovery process are the hardest. If you've taken the correct steps and cut off contact with your affair partner, then you are in no man’s land. You no longer have the intoxicating passion you had with the other man and you have a husband who is furious with you.  

The two of you are always fighting and you feel so alone and confused.

When the rubber meets the road, you will realize that you are holding on to an illusion. The actuality of the situation is that this type of relationship is not sustainable. Romantic love and true, lasting love are not cut from the same cloth.  

Romantic love is quick, intense, and has an expiration date. True love is steady and dependable. There were probably red flags that went ignored because you were getting all of your needs and desires met.  

If you stay in this course and give yourself some time, you will come to the realization that sustainable love is what you truly desire. Take this opportunity to create that type of relationship with your husband. It will not look the same as it did with your affair partner and that is okay. You don’t want that. That type of love is unhealthy.

Use this experience to learn more about yourself and what you have been missing in your marriage. What is it that you really want from your husband? What kind of work do you both need to put into your relationship to get there?

Virginia E. Abell is a Relationship and Affair Recovery Specialist. If you can’t get over the other man and you would like to receive some additional support, sign-up for her newsletter and you will receive her Free Guide for Affair Recovery and other helpful tips. Stay tuned for a webinar coming up about "4 Ways To Win Back Your Husband’s Trust."

This article was originally published at Virginia E. Abell, Affair Recovery Specialist. Reprinted with permission from the author.