I fell in love with a married man
I’m not sure why I’m writing this. I don’t really have a question to ask. I think I just needed to tell this story truthfully and completely, and I have no one to tell it to.
To start off with, I get hit on by married guys all the time. It usually starts out with “I’m married but we have a lot of problems”, or “I’m married but we didn’t marry for love”, or “I’m married but my wife and I fell out of love a long time ago” – and I’m not stupid. I know that is a way to let me know he is emotionally available. It has never worked.
That is NOT how it started with my boyfriend. When we first met, he would gush about his wife. He would tell me about how wonderful she was and about all the wonderful heroic things she did and all the times she stood by him throughout his difficulties. I thought it was awfully sweet. When I first met him, he had just moved to town to look for work after he had gone through a considerably traumatic experience back home. He was so traumatized that when he first moved, he could barely keep track of the days of the week or stop his arm from shaking chronically. That was what brought us together. I had my own share of trauma as well and we were able to relate to each other.
We became good friends with much in common. We fell in love very quickly –a kind of love that I have never experienced before - a kind of love that is just so whole and fulfilling and complete. As we got closer, he would begin to tell me about his problems with his wife. His complaints became more and more frequent, and at one point he burst into tears telling me that the only reason he couldn’t leave her is not because he loves her, but because he feels like he owes her for standing by him throughout his difficult times.
I never wanted him to get divorced - because I love him, I didn’t want him to be alone, knowing our families would never let us get married and we’re from a part of the world where they sort of have to approve. I was quite happy to be the other woman for a while – I was just so happy to be so well-treated after all the abuse I had been through and all the things I felt I had missed out on. I wanted that happiness even if it would not last forever.
And when he started to talk about divorce. I asked him not to do it, or at least to wait. I wanted him to wait until he was in a more stable place emotionally before making a decision like that. I also wanted him to wait until he saw her so that he would be sure of his feelings (you see, he had moved to town without her - they had planned she would move later).
But then his wife managed to get into his account and download our conversations from his cloud backup. She then proceeded to distribute that document to his friends and family. As you can imagine, it all sort of escalated from there. In addition to the truth, a bunch of horrid rumors were also invented about me. He is now in the process of divorce. Everyone from his hometown hates him, and of course me as well. To them, he’s a cheater and I’m a whore. And maybe I am a whore. But he’s a good guy.
Sometimes I feel guilty. Sometimes I’m just too happy and in love to feel guilty. I don’t think he ever feels guilty. I think he has just harbored too much resentment towards her over the years to feel guilty. And I think she reminded him so often of all the things she did for him that it ended up turning his gratitude to resentment.
Again, I don’t have a question to ask really or a point to make. I just needed to tell this story to people who wouldn’t know my name when they pass their judgment on me.
Maybe the only thing I struggle with in my relationship with him is that there are so many things that I was so excited to do for the first time, and I struggle with the fact that he has done it all and lived a whole life with someone else. Like..I was a virgin, never lived with a man before, never so much as gone out past midnight or played board games on the rooftop with a man before..and sometimes I struggle with the fact that he has had a whole life with someone else. I don’t think it makes me jealous really. It just makes me feel old. How different it is from your first love….loving someone when you both have a past.
Your post really resonates with me, and understand, it's completely normal to feel the way you do about things. We want to be with someone who is "on our level". There are some things we are willing to accept, some differences we can put behind ourselves to love someone else for who they are despite not being exactly who we had in mind for ourselves. And some things we cannot. It sounds like so far you really haven't done anything wrong with this man, you haven't crossed that line, but have just been there for him as a close friend and confidant. But I guess you have to decide whether or not you want to try to cross that line.
Not quite a decade ago, I was still a virgin. I wanted to meet someone who was the same, but at the time I guess I really didn't know how to go about doing it. I was never very sociable, and could never make lasting friendships. And I guess I felt like I had screwed my life up enough already at that point that I just wanted to find a way to change my environment, and see if I could succeed elsewhere. I had began talking to a woman who was in an unhappy relationship at the time, and over the course of a few weeks we started talking and got to know one another, and shared laughs and secrets with one another. Eventually she broke up with her boyfriend, and we began dating. And after a few months, we started visiting one another.
And maybe I should have held out and waited for a better person for me to come along. But understand, when you invest your feelings and energy into someone, it becomes kind of hard to throw it all away. Imagine you and this guy go your separate ways, and you try to date someone else. Things you've talked about with him, conversations you've had - sometimes it can be awkward trying to do it all over again, and exhausting to try to explain all of your thoughts to a new person close to you. I guess there comes a point where you have to decide whether to erase the chalk board and start all over again, or keep going and see where it leads, and let love envelop you.
My first relationship didn't work out. But it taught me a lot about what I want and need in a relationship. I regret a lot of things, but I know now that it was wrong to let it escalate to that. I think I did some things for the wrong reason. Maybe I still do, out of loneliness and longing. Just understand, it's okay to make some mistakes, and we do not live in a perfect existence. Do the best you can, but don't push every man away from you and don't let every man take advantage of you. Dating and love are hard, and I've learned since my divorce just how difficult it can be. If there's someone in your life who you feel is special enough to take a chance on, then do it! And go at your own pace, if you need to.
Something I struggle with is that, I don't think I could be with someone who has kids. I haven't had any children of my own, so this seems like a fair and reasonable thing to me. I understand that might seem strange to many women who have kids. But then I'm sure quite a few women couldn't be with me since I've married and divorced, and they would have wanted to experience that with someone else who's never been married before. But I never got to be with a virginal woman, and I realize I probably never will be now at this point in my life. A friend of mine supposedly got to sleep with at least two, among his many romances. At least he has redeeming qualities -
there are plenty of rotten guys that get the girls. This world is not fair and is not perfect. But you do the best you can with what you've got.
Just know that people can love again, and I don't think there is such a thing as just one true love for each person. You work to build that relationship with someone and invite them into your life. And if one day you realize it isn't working out, know that it's okay to move on and try again with a person better-suited to you.
Good luck out there! (A)
Hello there THUNDERBOLT1,
Things happen for a reason.
You two met because you were meant to meet.
Love happens. Just like that. You can see yourself as an accelerant, but not as the reason for the breaking of that marriage. I'm convinced that there is no such thing as a "home-breaker". If your family is in good stand, if you love each other and are in love with each other, there's no possible affair in the middle.
Of course, things could have been different. For me, is better to be brutally honest and call things by their names. In his position, I would have talked with my partner and ask tell her that I wanted to divorce, way before it came as a consequence of "the affair", which it's obviously a symptom and not a cause.
But there's no sense in crying over spilled milk. Just live your lives the best way you can, try to support each other and be happy.
If you acted and said things out of love, then you have nothing to fear. People will understand when time passes by.
I am the other woman and I have been struggling a lot. I have used the chat to try and talk but people are very judgmental about the cheating woman (as maybe they should be).
Daily I have internal battles with myself about our relationship. We have been seeing each other for over a year. We have tried to end it a few times but keep making our way back together. We love each other a lot. We talk everyday text all day long. We see each other as much as we can sometimes even if it's only for ten minutes.
He says that he wants a life with me and wants to marry me. He has kids and that makes leaving his wife more complicated. Our relationship is about to become long distance. He is still planning on seeing me even with the distance and hoping that when he gets his children settled and this transition done he will get divorced. When I say it out loud I realize how naïve and cliche that it sounds. As much that I hate that this will be long distance I think that it is good that it is happening. It will either make or break this which needs to happen.
The worst part about being in a relationship like this (besides the obvious) is how isolating it is. How much is given up for a maybe and a someday. That is the part that I am trying to work on. I don't want to let him go yet but I also have to stop letting myself go. It feels like sometimes that I have put my life on pause. I have become more negative and less social.
No reason for judgement here.
I'm sorry to hear about your struggle. Facts are that most married men won't divorce because somebody else appeared in the picture.
You're an escape. A temporary relief for his life, but becoming a long distance relationship while being "the other woman" is frankly a waste of time.
You said it clearly. You're isolating yourself in favor of someone that will never have you as a first priority. That's a fact. I'm a father too and the kids come first. Even before my own wife.
You deserve something better.
Kiss him good bye and let him go. Recover your life and get something real. For you!