What Does it Mean When Your Wife Emotionally Connects to Another Man?
Here’s a scenario that plays out for men all over the world on a daily basis. After many years of happy marriage, your wife starts to seem distracted, distant, like her mind is off somewhere else.
She spends much of her time on the internet, maybe in a chat room. Or she stays out a lot, often with a man you don’t know very well and she claims is just a friend.
Eventually, you confront her. She admits to having a more than friendly intimacy with him, a bond she once only had with you. She swears up and down that there’s no sex involved, but it still hurts just as much.
What you’re dealing with is an “emotional affair,” an act of infidelity that is just as painful as something sexual, perhaps even more so.
The Fallout From Your Wife’s Emotional Affair
If you’re coping with your wife’s emotional affair, you’re probably very distraught and confused right now. You’re likely feeling the same amount of despair, anger, and grief as you would with a sexual affair. And worst of all, you might not have the same faith in your marriage as you did before you found out the truth.
If so, you’re having a very normal reaction. An emotional affair may not involve sexual contact, but it’s still a very intimate betrayal, one that can be very difficult to recover from. But you’re not alone.
Many men have experienced the anguish of their wife’s emotional affair, with most of them feeling the same way as you do. Fortunately, after a difficult period, most of these men usually recover nicely. And so can you.
But what do you do? What does a man do to recover from the knowledge of his wife’s emotional affair? The answer depends on your situation, on how strong your marriage is and what type of personality you have for example. And many other factors as well, which will be revealed to you as the healing process continues.
But when it comes to coping with an emotional affair, some things you need to do are universal. The basic requirements are compassion, patience, and outside help. We’ll discuss these in the next two sections.
A Compassionate Approach Always Works Best
This might sound insane considering what your wife has put you through, but the best thing you can do right now is to be compassionate toward her. Put yourself in her position as best you can and realize that she’s probably acting out on a deep-seated sense of emptiness of dissatisfaction.
And although your wife is the one who betrayed you and not vice versa, it’s important to understand that she might be suffering just as much as you, albeit in a different way.
This is not to diminish what you’re experiencing as a betrayed spouse. It’s not a sneaky way to place the blame on your shoulders either. It’s just the reality of the situation; if she’s not going downhill already, your wife is very likely feeling enough guilt, remorse, and shame to send her into a tailspin of her own.
Being compassionate will help you get through this in better shape too. The last thing you want to do right now is to dwell on your anger and breed unnecessary bitterness. This will only prolong your misery and burden you with guilt, so remember that your wife is struggling too and act accordingly.
Is There Still Hope to Fill the Breach?
Whether or not you want to stay with her and work on your marriage is entirely up to you. But if you’ve decided that you still love your wife and want to work on your marriage, you might be asking yourself if reconciliation is still possible, if anything can be done to fill the breach that infidelity’s opened between the two of you.
The short answer is yes. In most cases, though not all, the damage of an emotional affair can be repaired and lead to a better marriage. It will take patience, hard work, and a lot of honesty to patch things up, but if both partners commit to the process, recovery is still possible.
These leads us to the last two things you must do after an emotional affair. Whether you decide to stay in the marriage or not, you’ll have to practice a lot of patience. Together or alone, you’ll both need time and deep reflection in order to heal.
Lastly, it’s best to seek outside help. This help can come from a variety of sources, but something that focuses on repairing the damage of infidelity will be the most effective. One great way to maximize your progress is through individual and couples counseling.
You can also locate online programs to guide you through whatever happens in the aftermath of her affair. There’s no reason to go through this alone, so get the help you need to start living again.