A friend, *Michael is having an affair with a married woman. On the outside looking in he has a promising career, and a beautiful home with a loving wife and children. He lives a facade of joy with a married woman who also has children of her own. His moments of happiness with the other woman are overshadowed by a realistic sense of disloyalty and disdain.
The following interview encompasses only one perspective of a man’s infidelity. I was with an unfaithful spouse in a previous relationship so I was unsure of how I would feel about what Michael had to share, but I still had to ask.
This interview is a curious glance into the life of a man having an affair.
*Names have been changed.
How did you meet the other woman?
*Lisa was my high school sweetheart. At one point we contemplated marriage however my parents didn’t approve of our relationship so we went our separate ways.
When did the affair begin?
Five years ago at a party, I saw Lisa out with our mutual friends. We partied all night together and I ended up in her bed while her husband was out of town. We’ve been seeing each other on and off again for the last five years. In the last two years we’ve seen each other once a month as she lives overseas.
Why are you having an affair?
The feeling of being with another woman gives me a sense of excitement and thrill. My wife and I, we’re complete strangers in our home and we haven’t even slept in the same bed for over a year. I’ve always fantasized about having sex with Lisa from when we were together in high school. It’s not always about sex though, we can talk for hours and we make each other laugh. We share moments like these that are lost with my wife.
Do you ever think about the consequences of the affair?
Yes, of course. I know that I could lose my family, my wife and everything that I own like my house, but I can’t stop. Lisa makes me feel so much of what I don’t ever feel with my wife and at the end of the day she goes back to her life and I go back to mine. It’s a convenient relationship. Lisa works a high profile role in government and if our affair ever became public the implications on her career and her personal life would be drastic.
How do you feel about your wife?
Of course, I would do anything for her and our children but in any relationship there are four important concepts of success: money, sex, compromise and communication. I know that I cheat on my wife because our marriage doesn’t have any of these four aspects, it never has.
What does the future entail for you and Lisa?
I dont’ see a future with Lisa as she has her own career, her husband and children. I could say even though it sounds blunt, that I’m only with her for the sex, the thrill and convenience of the relationship we have together.
Do you feel like you are living two separate lives?
Indeed. It does get tiresome and my stress levels have sky-rocketed as I’m constantly lying to my wife. I do feel a sense of guilt but obviously its not enough to make me stop. I just can’t stop.
Where does your family and her family come into all of this?
Nobody knows about our affair. Lisa and I have discussed ending our affair because we know it’s not right and we both have careers that we need to focus on.
Will you tell your wife about the affair?
Probably not. At times I wish she would just find out so we could get over the fake charade of a marriage that we display to our family and friends.
If you could go back ,would you do anything different?
The problem is, Lisa has always been on my mind since high school. She was the girl I wanted to marry. I look at my wife and I see a stranger and I wonder how long I’ve been living this lie. I know that this affair will cause a lot of damage, but I also know that my relationship with my wife needs to end regardless of this affair because our marriage is unhappy, and unhealthy. However, I know that this does not justify having an affair.
Why are you still with your wife if you are unhappy?
Our marriage is convenient. People look at us and think that we’re the perfect couple, living in a beautiful house with two children and two dogs. I only married my wife because she fell pregnant with our child at the age of eighteen and I felt obligated to be a man and step up to the role of fatherhood. I’ve had a successful career for the past six years and I’ve built a home for my family, and I don’t want divorce to take away all that I’ve worked hard for.
Where to from here, Michael?
I know that my relationship with Lisa has to end. I also know that I can’t keep lying to my wife or stay married to her. I’m meeting Lisa at the end of the month and although I’d like to say that I want to finish our affair, it’s difficult because every time I see Lisa I’m reminded of so many happy memories we’ve shared together. Lisa has asked me to leave my wife and has said that she’ll leave her husband but there is too much at stake. I can’t just throw away the five years we’ve had together. I just can’t let her go.
Love & laughter,