Why Doesn't the Unfaithful See What They Are in Danger of Losing?

Samuel answers viewers comments on why the unfaithful isn't aware of the consequence of their choices.

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No thinking

You say that in the midst of your affair you never think of the consequences. Can that go on for over 7 years? Coming home everyday, being with your family and not “thinking” of what you are doing? You are right, that is hard to believe....

thank you for the comment...

i think at some level, you think about them, but you don't entertain them on a daily basis.  7 years is a long time and more than enough time for your conscience to become seared and for you to continue to lie to yourself.  it's sad theyhave done that to you.  i'm very sorry.  but there are some deep issues you both are facing, and they are in over his head.  your spouse will need expert care if they are going to heal and find breakthrough.  i'm sorry for the pain you're in.   


When you say deep issues- can you give an example of what you feel is going on?

Unfaithful spouse "Not thinking"

Your blog has been so helpful in my despair in trying to unwrap and understand what and why my husband's affair happened. Because of you explanations in your blogs we enrolled on EMSO, and my husband is showing full commitment to the lessons and committing to the truth. Thank you.

The actions of the unfaithful are so impulsive, that it is so hard to rationalize them. My husband says he wasn't thinking, but I guess for the betrayed spouses it is hard to believe that there is no thinking involved. Unfaithful spouses think about ways to hide the affair, compartmentalize, they think about the AP when they are not with them, they think about how they will lie and deceive their spouses, they think about and plan escapades with their AP's. So to me there is a lot thinking and planning involved. So the "no thinking" rational is the best way I can understand it. because if they had (been thinking rational) they probably wouldn't have had the affair in the first place.

One thing I can't get my head around and having difficulties understanding with the "not thinking" part is how the unfaithful spouse can bring over the AP to the home and marital bed...clearly my husband was not thinking of how this action would devastate me. But how did he give himself permission to do this? how do you share something that is so personal (to me, to us) and sacred to the marriage without thinking about the spouse?. Is there anything I can watch that will make me understand this? I am 14 months from 1st Dday and 1 year from 2nd DDay. When it comes to this subject I just can't understand it or get my head around it, I get stuck. Please help.

tough one...

hi venus, it's a good question.  unfortunately, i don't know that you've ever quite fully grasp the mindset, as you've not been unfaithful (thank God) so there's always going to be a bit of small unavoidable disconnect there.  the fact is, you're (the unf) infatuated.  you're in limerance, which is explained here:  https://www.affairrecovery.com/radio/limerance  we're blinded by passion and by lust.  it's not an excuse, but information about where we are.  it's very drug like in many ways too.  these articles will help in terms of explaining the drug like euphoria we feel in these moments:  https://www.affairrecovery.com/newsletter/founder/infidelity-unfaithful-why-did-they-cheat-part-one-the-role-of-oxytocin  we're not using our reasoning faculties as we're dealing with some strong chemicals in our brain.  now, having said that, it hurts like hell for you and i'm sorry.  he's never going to be able to full explain this to you in a way that makes perfect sense, but with the articles and information you can gain understanding to the point of it being enough and then surrender the need to know it perfectly, in order to then move towards grieving and forgiving.  i know it's overwhelming, but the fact that you're here, on this site and blog shows you're really working towards your own healing and i'm so proud of you for that.  it's not easy and not everyone does that. hope this helps you.  sorry for the delay.


Feeling stuck in affair

Can unfaithful spouses feel a sense of being stuck in their affairs? My husband tells me that the reason his affair lasted so long was that he didn’t know how to get out of it--that he knew I'd divorce him if I found out. (My first marriage ended in divorce because of an exit affair.) He says he worked hard at just trying to “manage it” because he DID recognize what he had to lose. That if he just kept his affair partner--who happened to be my friend--happy then he knew she wouldn’t expose the affair and cause me pain. He says during the "no contact" times throughout their affair, he had a sense of relief when she’d reach out because then he didn’t have the constant worry of the secret being exposed. When he finally told me about the affair, he said it was because he could no longer live the life he was living, even though he knew how much the affair would hurt me. Sometimes that explanation makes sense, but other times it feel like a line of bull. Have other unfaithful spouses felt stuck in their affairs?

it is very normal......

hi maurice, while it may seem like an excuse, I would say there is great truth to the fact that it's a normal struggle when you're in the middle of an affair and you want to break free but you're afraid of the repercussions.  i know it can seem like just an excuse to stay in an affair, or an excuse to justify not taking any action, but most times this is not the case and they (we) are terrified of letting the truth come out for fear of losing you, the damage this will create and what we believe to be hopelessness of ever salvaging the marriage.  

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