My marriage consisted of an abusive husband who lied and ultimately cheated. During our dating (and at the beginning of our marriage) we were both into the same wild lifestyle. Instead of acting like adults, we carried on like teenagers in a world of sex, drugs and rock and roll. Once my daughter was born I had enough of that life and wanted to settle in to being a family. My husband just couldn’t merge these two worlds and so it ended.

I was now newly divorced with a young daughter. Sad, alone and a very changed lifestyle, I wasn’t sure how to navigate this at first. I was trying to recreate myself as new independent women, a single mother and find a career. Truth be told, the juggle was extremely difficult and depressing at times. So much responsibility, all-resting on my shoulders! My ex was a deadbeat – took our daughter every other weekend, and barely paid his part.

I am not making excuses for myself, and I knew going into an affair with a married man was wrong, but somehow, probably subconsciously, I felt like this man was my ticket to a better life.

The affair started out innocently – flirting and texting. But as the weeks rolled into months, I found myself thinking of exciting opportunities to spend time with my new interest and keep him hooked on me.   Married men want to be heard, they want to be appreciated and they want to be desired.   So I gave him what he needed.

No I didn’t think about his wife or his family or what my selfish actions were creating. I listened and sympathized as he complained about his wife, full well knowing that all marriages go through bumps and that there are always 3 sides to a story.

When I look back, I was selfish and kept pursuing this relationship because it made me feel good. It gave me hope that this successful man would leave his wife and take me away from my new mundane existence.

Affairs are dangerous because they are unrealistic relationships and are protected from the stresses of everyday life..

Most affair “partners” develop unrealistic expectations about each other based on the ease of their affair. As soon as I started to have an expectation from my “man ” our chemistry quickly changed. Our fun and easy times together turned into arguments and fights.   I became an awful version of myself.   What I didn’t even think about while in the midst of this pursuit, is that an extremely small percent of married people leave their marriages to commit to their lovers.

That affair has long ended – I can see clearly now that I believed it to be more than it was.   In realty, his train fell off the track for a short period of time and I happened to be there when it crashed. I told him what he wanted to hear, and in reality hindered him from getting back on track sooner.

That experience left me feeling more alone than at the end of my marriage. I made some terrible decisions that I will live with for the rest of my life. I often think about how I felt when my husband cheated on me and can’t believe that I turned around and made another women feel that same pain. Sadness, depression and guilt are emotions that stayed with me for a long time. It’s about a sense of self worth – something I didn’t have at the end of my marriage – which allowed me to cross the line and behave so inappropriately.  Today, I am feeling much more self confident and self aware than ever before in my life.

My guilt of my actions still lives in my mind. There is no excuse for getting involved with someone that you know is married. People judge you, and in the end you judge yourself harder.   Trust me it’s just not worth it.

The pain, and the betrayal is too difficult in an Affair, even for the Mistress!

L.S. 41

 

 

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