DEAR DEIDRE: My wife has just caught me having sex with my long-term lover and is now threatening to throw me out of the house.
I am 42, my wife of 20 years is 40 and our sons are 20 and 18. We were young and in love when we got married and I thought we would stay that way forever. My wife was and still is, stunningly beautiful.
I lost my dad suddenly four years ago and that turned my world upside-down. He had been our family’s rock. My wife has a high-powered job and was working away a lot so I was lonely.
A single mum who lived on our estate often had problems with her car. She’s 29. I had helped her out several times then one day she invited me for a coffee. Somehow we ended up kissing. She poured out her troubles to me, about her violent ex, and her various boyfriends.
She kept finding excuses to call round when my wife was out. One day when she came around and my wife was away, we ended up having sex. It was really something else. She is overweight and not attractive but is still very sexy. I was hooked and it started our four-year affair.
My friends envy me my stylish wife but I am still seeing this other woman. It has reached a point over the past couple of years where I do not want sex with my wife though she still desperately wants sex with me. I can’t look at her without feeling guilty.
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She accused me of having an affair many times and of course I denied it. Then she came home early from work a few days ago – she didn’t feel well so of course she was sent home – and I was in bed with this woman. My wife went absolutely crazy but no wonder.
I have racked my brains to understand why I have carried on this affair for so long but I just don’t get it.
DEIDRE SAYS: It is no excuse but you were devastated by your father’s death.
Maybe you felt you should keep a stiff upper lip but it’s a shame you did not share how you felt with your wife or get help from Cruse bereavement care (www.cruse.org.uk, 0808 808 1677). It’s not too late to do that now.
Sex with your lover gave you thrills without emotional entanglement and, as you got hooked on that buzz, that has increasingly damaged your marriage.
Your wife clearly still loves you and there’s a good chance she will agree to try again if you show real remorse and commitment.
Tell your lover the affair is over and tell your wife how sorry you are – without making any excuses.
Plan together how you can strengthen your relationship and rediscover one another as lovers. My e-leaflet Cheating – Can You Get Over It? explains in more detail.
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