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Getting back the passion after an affair...

(106 Posts)
jenny99 Sun 03-Feb-13 11:59:31

Last night my husband and I kissed for the first time since May. I have had (and admitted to) having an affair and we are both working on rebuilding our marriage.

He feels that sex is an important part of it yet I feel not ready for that yet and feel as tho that will be 'the icing on the cake' when I know things will work out. I'm not trying to withhold it etc I just don't feel the urge or want to do it for the sake of it. We have discussed this and he also says he only wants me to do it if I am ready and want to do it.

We want to work things out yet just don't know yet whether it will be ok or not. things have been rocky for 1-2 yrs.

So it started out quite nice and tender and I was waiting to feel some passion. I didn't sad

I just wanted to feel his passion for me, his wanting me as he keeps saying how much he loves me and wants me. I know an affair is all about the thrill and excitement but I hoped that after abstinence with OH for so long there may have been a bit?!

Is this an indication it will never be ok again or will it grow as our relationship betters?

The sex was a bit boring for a long long time and will need to be addressed if we stay together but I don't think now is the right time. I tried many times to spice things up a bit over the last few years and he was happy how it was....

I can't tell him yet that it wasn't great. But I want to feel a bit of passion! Aargh. Not sure what I want to hear from anyone but maybe just want to get it off my chest.

Thank you for reading x

badinage Sun 03-Feb-13 13:02:58

Does your husband know that the OM finished your relationship after you met him?

Have you had a STI check?

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 13:05:54

Your poor DH, he must be a very loving and caring man having you back after you fucked him over. I'll tell you when you will feel the passion for him, when he sees the light and leaves, then you will want him because you want what you can't have don't you?

Passion? FFS how old are you? I hope there are not children involved, at least

Bobbybird40 Sun 03-Feb-13 13:07:23

I other OM did finish it that would surely be absolute deal breaker for husband if he has any pride.

meditrina Sun 03-Feb-13 13:16:00

Both of them were responsible for the state of the marriage before the affair.

But only one of them decided to bale out and have an affair; a long running one from the sound of it - no kissing since May (so start sometime before that?) trip away not until November.

DH has only known for sure about this for less than two months. He may still be in shock. OP needs to decide if she wants to mend the marriage, in which case she will need to accept role of healer until the damage of the affair subsides enough for DH to have the strength, sense of security and equilibrium to look at the overall relationship.

Or consider ending it decently, before much more time passes.

Numberlock Sun 03-Feb-13 13:18:20

badinage I think I missed the part where the OM ended it? I was wondering who ended it and why, especially so soon after meeting

BagCat Sun 03-Feb-13 13:20:32

Leave this poor man and give him the chance to get over you, and to find and be with someone who loves him and feels excited about him. Poor guy. It's as if he has something to make up for - he doesn't - you cheated on him, not the other way around. If I read your posts as if you are the man and you had the affair, I find it hard to find any sympathy for you. Sorry.

Perhaps instead of having the affair, the big red warning light should have pointed to you leaving the marriage instead, cutting out the middle man.

likeatonneofbricks Sun 03-Feb-13 13:21:44

Op, if you only slept with OM in November, how on earth do you expect to feel passion for your H, it's only been TWO months! especially as marriage was rocky even before affair, so it wasn't passionate for a while.

It's even less likely to be passionate straight after the affair, you need months of doing things together and connecting again on emotional level, then passion may come back. I think it's a miracle he already feels aroused at least, he may have lost any desire for you so that's good start surely?

likeatonneofbricks Sun 03-Feb-13 13:24:20

he could have lost desire, I meant

jenny99 Sun 03-Feb-13 13:38:14

Thank you for your comments so far...some of them have been very helpful.

theOriginalLadyFT Thank you. We are trying. Support is greatly appreciated.

Personally, I would have thought that after a long marriage it is surely better to try and fix things, whatever it takes, rather than to walk away.

I realise I have been wrong. Disgusting and despicable even, but I am trying to make things work and to now do the right thing. And if by being honest and talking about how I really feel then that makes me selfish then I am sorry some of you feel that way. Surely it would be more selfish to tell my husband that I love him and everything is great, and to just resume sex.

Seriously, without wanting to lay myself out for more 'bashing', I don't feel I am being selfish by talking honestly. Yes, I know the marriage needs to work for him too, but here on MN I am talking about MY feelings because I want to reconcile them and I want to get to the bottom of all of this and to fix things for the better and for the long term from the very root of things, not superficially.

It is sad that for so many people on so many threads here the answer is 'move out' or 'end the marriage'. My parents and my in laws are all still in their first marriage. I have only 3 friends who have (in the last year) separated. To me, marriage is a thing I always held dear and valued. I know I screwed up and there are obviously deep seated reasons relating to that, but I don't want to just throw it away and move on until I know without a shadow of a doubt that that is the best thing for us both.

cogito Part of the reason I told him was because he just couldn't understand why I was distant and why he was trying his damnedest and it wasn't helping. I told him not to relieve any of my guilt, I know I could have borne it for the rest of my life, but I truly believe he should know. Somebody pointed out to me that him and me are both making choices about our marriage, and didn't he deserve to know the truth about where I am coming from.

melbie thank you for your comments. Yes, I still feel very emotionally attached to the OM, but am trying to get him out of my head now. I have to be honest (for which I am usually slated) but it is hard, and I still have feelings. I completely agree with you that I need to get to the root cause of this before I can work things out. I know that OM represented all the usual...fun, passion, excitement, etc and am working on what (if) is missing from my life...

I am always honest with what I say and what I write. If I don't write the truth what's the point? Sorry if that makes me selfish. I am writing the truth because I am hoping for help to get me to what I know would be the best outcome.

I am trying. I am trying to do the right thing and I am trying to make things work out. Is that a bad thing?

bobbybird40 interesting, thank you. It is an ongoing conversation with my RL BF whether he is being incredibly strong and fighting for what we had and working through this, or whether he is being walked over and weak and just scared to lose everything. It is interesting that you relate that to passion too...I hadn't thought of it that way.

minnie thank you. Yes, there are many issues. That is why it isn't as easy as me just saying sorry and let's shut that door.

Mike interesting name ;) thanks for your comments too. We have decided that we shouldn't (yet) live separately as we are trying to stay reasonably 'together' for the children. Altho I am sure they are picking up on something. We are also aware that statistically a couple who is living apart is less likely to stay together. Yes, I need to put his feelings first, so does that mean if he wants to stay together I just do it? Surely he deserves me to feel real love for him and to be certain we can make it, rather than just go with it? I have discussed with him that he too has choices and if he decides to not wait for me or support me in any way through this, then I will accept that too.

In answer to others;

yes, OM finished it.

OH knows no details about that or anything else. He doesn't want to.

I am early 40s

yes I have been to the sti clinic

We have 2 children.

If he leaves and then I want him, then I fully accept I made my bed and will lie in it.

jenny99 Sun 03-Feb-13 13:43:58

oh...more comments while I wrote that essay....

The affair was an EA first, (he lives 5,000 miles away). That was the main reason for it finishing.

Sex life with OH was almost non existent from October '11 until May '12 which was the actual 'last time'.

I told my OH how unhappy I was in May '11, and in October when I still felt he did nothing about it I asked if we could have counselling. He refused, and was in denial of the problems. Or perhaps I didn't make it clear how bad I was feeling. Who knows. We can't go back now. I started the EA in December '11.

likeatonneofbricks yes, I feel that way, that it will be a huge thing, and we need to get back the emotional connection first. He feels the sex is an important thing now...

I think you should move out. You might make it more like 'dating' that way and perhaps build something back up and perhaps if you start looking forward to seeing him next weekend (as you might have done at the beginning) you might be able to rekindle some passion.

Or your DH may realise that he's better off without you. Either way, things move on, rather than stay in this unfair stalemate.

jenny99 Sun 03-Feb-13 13:46:47

bagcat I'm not looking for sympathy and forgive me if I gave that impression. I'm looking for understanding and helping for me to understand how I am feeling and get to the root of things here so we can work on the long journey back up.

This post was as I am wondering whether the passion comes back just like that, or whether it will be related to the emotional connection we have, or have not, right now.

I had been hoping to feel more when we kissed and I didn't. I wish I had. I'm wondering whether I will feel more as things improve. They are improving. Or whether if I didn't feel it now in his kiss, I won't.

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 13:47:26

Are you staying with him because you think that you should?

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 13:49:24

How long have you been married, i am not sure i feel "passion" when my DP kisses me, its been too long if tht makes sense. But i love him deeply and that goes further. Our sex life is, well, its ok. No where near as passionate as it was, but more passionate than many, if that makes sense. I don't think you are going to get passion back into a kiss - you need to take it further.

jenny99 Sun 03-Feb-13 13:53:35

frustratedworkingmum Thank you. We've been together 20 years. I'm not staying because I think I should. I want it to work because I think it should, but I will only stay if it is going to. (does that make sense?!). Thanks for sharing re your sex life....I know it will be different after 20 yrs together than a passion filled weekend, but I was hoping to feel more when we kissed than just 'is this it?' 'why aren't I feeling turned on at all'. I know it will be more 'love' based than passion fuelled, but how important is the sex in the overall package of a marriage?! I just want it to be enjoyable tbh, but didn't even thing that sad

Dahlen Sun 03-Feb-13 13:59:30

I think Voice's suggestion is a good one. If it's not financially/practically possible, try living as housemates rather than partners for a while - don't do household chores for each other, carry out personal habits in front of each other, etc. You need to aim for respectful distance, like you would when houseshare or first move in with each other. And keep sex off the agenda by sleeping separately.

I think you need to look back on the days when you did have passion and identify what it was about the relationship back then that made you feel that way. Was it simply because it was new? What made it exciting? Was there something he used to do or a way he used to be that turned you on? Once you've identified those things it becomes much easier to look at what you can do to rekindle that kind of behaviour in your DH.

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 14:01:49

20 years here too - i think you are expecting too much. Not that wanting passion is asking too much, we all want that, i get it, 1/10 times, the rest is just nice (nice!! confused) but you know what i mean. I think you are putting yourself and consequently your DH under pressure, it wont be brilliant, it will be awkward and you'll have to put up with that until brilliant comes back. Look, he forgave you, that tells me he bloody loves you. You must love him (surely?) else you would have left already?

badinage Sun 03-Feb-13 14:06:28

Your husband might not want to know the gory details, but what a load of bollocks that you've failed to tell him the OM dumped you, because he said he didn't want to know that very salient detail....angry

I'll tell you why you've got no passion for your husband. You've told him only the partial truth, are only with him because the OM dumped you and most importantly, you've got zero respect for him.

I remember your other thread. You'd have been off like a shot if the OM would have had you. He didn't, so because you've never been independent and worked you've decided to stay with your husband.

It's hard to feel passion for someone you see as second best and a mug to boot.

jenny99 Sun 03-Feb-13 14:13:31

badinage yes I would have been off with the OM but that didn't happen. It isn't as simple as therefore staying because I've never been on my own. To me it is as simple as staying because it is worth at least trying? I loved him very much once. Even tho I always had feelings for OM I chose to marry my husband and have been very happy with no thoughts of straying for most of that time. He didnt ask what happened with OM he just asked if we are still in contact.
I really do truly want to get back the feelings I had for him and am doing a lot of soul searching to try and do that.

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 14:16:50

So, if the OM hadn't have dumped you, you wouldn't be with your DH?

I'm out!

TheOriginalLadyFT Sun 03-Feb-13 14:17:29

I think sometimes that the lack of passion (or at least being concerned about it, in a "is this it?" way) is a sort of metaphor for a more general fear that life is just slipping past, that we skim along the surface and feel nothing. The years tick past and we get up, go to work, raise children, go to sleep and repeat and repeat, and somewhere we forget who we are and what we dreamed for ourselves.

An affair in that situation is perhaps a symptom of a need to feel a connection - with deeper feelings or emotions. When the OP's husband ignored her appeal to him to listen to her fears (and perhaps address them with counselling), that need for comfort or support maybe got diverted elsewhere.

It's easy to to judge, or project your own feelings onto a situation, but people do make mistakes and sitting in judgment is pretty harsh. The OP is trying to be honest, and find a way to hold her marriage together - but it is unreasonable to expect her to ignore her feelings and needs while doing that

badinage Sun 03-Feb-13 14:17:41

You're reconciling under false pretences then. Stop kidding yourself that you're with-holding the important facst that you were dumped and would have left, simply because your husband hasn't asked. Sheesh....of course you don't feel passion. You're a liar by omission and lying to yourself that your husband doesn't want to know the truth. Stop soul-searching and be honest FFS, including with yourself.

Bobbybird40 Sun 03-Feb-13 14:19:58

I couldn't stay with the missis if I knew I was second choice - not in a million years. You are being grossly unfair OP - you surely can see that?
How big a factor is finance in all of this? Can you afford to split up?

VanderElsken Sun 03-Feb-13 14:33:05

Are you in any way still in contact with the OM, ever?

jenny99 Sun 03-Feb-13 14:38:00

frustratedworkingmum I know, it is awful, but I was swept up with my emotions. But I am still here, and this is a choice. I am not scared of being alone. I have chosen to stay and to try and get my marriage back to where it once was. Sorry.

TheOriginalLadyFT thank you for your advice and words. I think you have hit the nail on the head. I know that what I have done is wrong. Thank you for not appearing to judge me. Yes, I am trying to get a grip on my feelings because unless I do that I won't move forward surely? I feel very much like I need a connection on a deeper level now with my husband, and that over the years, the kids, etc, that gets swept away and now that the kids going to uni is looming in the next 5 yrs...it will just be me and him...I 'need' more from him. I don't want us to just be 'mum' and 'dad'. I need us to be together, emotionally, and fulfilling the needs we both have at this stage in our lives...the next stage.

badinage / others Ok, yes I was dumped. But now that that has happened, is it better to say, well I would have gone so I will go anyway, or to say....'hang on, I had a great marriage for a long time, can that be fixed'. Would it have been madness to go and based upon lust? Just because I would have gone, doesn't mean it would have been the right thing to do to leave the marriage does it? Perhaps by him dumping me I have been given a lucky (whether deserved or not) chance, to rectify things?

Bobbybird40 I don't want him to be 2nd best. I want to make things right and to be truly happy. If I am not, and we cannot work things out together then we will make the decision to split up. I don't want to settle for second best. I don't think he deserves that either. I am not trying to be grossly unfair. I am trying to salvage and improve a failing marriage, that was good for many, many years, that my OH wants to mend. Yes, we could afford to split up. Finance is not a factor in this. For that I am eternally grateful as it means we are able to make decisions based on how we feel and what we want.

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