Dear Carmen: He’s Having an Affair…

Dear Carmen,

I’m a single mom, getting back into the dating scene after my divorce finalized 1 year ago.

After a few horrible dates, I finally met a man I clicked with. He’s loving, attentive, funny, caring, and good to my kids. He’s wonderful! We’ve been dating for almost 2 months, when I discovered he’s married.

He told me he’s been very unhappy in his marriage for several years already, wants to pursue our relationship further, and promised to end his marriage. He and his wife has one child together and they still live together. They have not been intimate with each other for years.

I guess what frustrates me the most is not being able to spend time with him publicly. He’s an executive for a big company and going out on dates is a no-go because as far as everyone else knows, he is still happily married.

I think I’m falling for him and I see great things for us ahead.

My question is, how long should I stick around?

Suddenly The Other Woman

Dear Suddenly…

I get that you want to spend time with him in public as a couple… go on dinner and movie dates… dancing… picnics… all that. Who wouldn’t, right? After all, when you’re involved with someone special that you care about, you want to create and share memories with them – both in private and out in the world.

But that’s secondary stuff at this time.

What should frustrate you the most, my sweet friend, is the fact that HE IS MARRIED with a wife and child.

Let’s put things into perspective…

  • He is still committed to the woman he’s married to. It doesn’t matter whether they’re physically intimate or not… the commitment exists. And honestly, who does he think he’s fooling?
  • He has a child with the woman he’s married to and lives with.
  • He live with HIS FAMILY.
  • He is happily married – as far as everyone in his life is concerned… and he wants to keep it that way (doesn’t matter if this is only for show… he wants people to see a happy family which includes him, his wife, and his child… you are nowhere in that picture).
  • YOU are having an affair with a married man.

Without shaming or guilt-tripping, let me tell you…

I understand how difficult it is to find someone for whom you feel that special spark… an intimate connection. And when you think you have it,  you want so badly for it to be real that you begin cutting the person tons of slack when you notice their words and actions aren’t those of someone truly looking out for you. 

He may be unhappy with his marriage, but how does that make it OK for him to be unfaithful to his wife? All marriages have their ups and downs. Some are fixable… some are not. The fact that he’s still there with his wife and child… acting like all is just fantastic for everyone else to see… shows that he feels things aren’t “bad enough” to take any major actions to change his life.

Girl, you can’t allow yourself to be his part-time fix. He can feed you all the hopes and dreams about a future together, but the REALITY is, he lives a life with his wife and child. And the indecisive, selfish, douche-nugget thinks it’s OK to keep you as his dirty little secret that he can sweep under the rug while he’s off living his REAL LIFE.

And keep this in mind… if he’s capable of stringing you along on the side, he’s demonstrating to you that he is capable of repeating this unfaithful behavior with you or anyone else.

You deserve better. You deserve someone who can be ALL THERE for you… not only when he can find time to sneak away from his REAL LIFE for some quick, secret fun.

You deserve someone who is committed to you full-time… someone who is proud to be seen at your side! But in order to make room for Mr. Commitment at your side, you need to show the married dude to the door… and immediately lock it behind him.

And another thing… he’s juggling all this in good conscience while raising a child? Is that the kind of role model you want for YOUR children? YOUR babies don’t need to go through another emotionally and mentally unhealthy family experience, do they? And knowing he has a child… do YOU really want to be a part of this? Being that other lady daddy is secretly messing around with behind mommy’s back?

Speaking of kids… your children learn what they live. You are their most important role model! Would you want your daughter to feel it’s OK to be a mistress? Or want your son to be unfaithful to his family when he and his spouse are having a rough time? Is this “relationship” one that you would encourage your own kids to pursue?

I doubt it. You want only the best for them, don’t you? Well, YOU deserve the best just as much.

Please respect yourself and raise your standards. Life is short… and it should be filled with love and happiness. You deserve someone who can show up fully in your life and your kids deserve a loving and secure home environment. So please do all of you a favor and remove that unfaithful and disrespectful presence from your lives.  Honestly, you shouldn’t have to wait around to get his scraps and wonder when he’ll finally leave his family for you. 

Omg tell me… how horrible does THAT sound?

If he’s really going to proceed with a divorce, tell him to find you once his divorce is final. Cut him off and don’t keep in touch. And if the divorce really happens, don’t even consider “taking him back” until he’s fully recovered and ready for a healthy relationship (you don’t want to be a rebound… that’s even more heartache and trouble, and you don’t need that).

You deserve all the love and happiness you want… and your children deserve only the best too! Don’t settle for scraps and sneaking around. Let go of the bad and begin healing. When you’re ready, you’ll find yourself in a TRUE, HONEST, and LOVING relationship you can feel safe in!


For more of what I WOULD DO in less-than ideal situations, I invite you to browse through my “Dear Carmen:” section… or submit your question to be possibly featured in an upcoming post!


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