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Has anyone met THE big love of their life, whilst married to someone else, and wondered what had hit them?

(162 Posts)
HubbaHubbaHoob Wed 08-Jun-16 15:33:54

I'm new here.
I'm reeling from an encounter I had recently, completely out of the blue, leaving me with a reaction that is totally out of character and I'm so confused I don't know what to make of it.
A bit of background.. Married for 20 years, not entirely happily, rubbing along as many of us do. Children whom I adore. Comfortable life. SAHM.
Went to a formal works dinner with dh recently, sat between two men I'd not met before, all very civilised and nice easy conversation, so far so normal. For the final course the men moved, so sat between another two men, knew neither of them. Got chatting to one of them about the usual subjects covered in these situations - family, home, health, hobbies. This lasted for maybe 45 minutes, and sometime during those few minutes something happened that I can't explain.
I actually think I fell in love, for the first time ever, although I didn't know that until I felt what I felt that night. It was almost as though I'd been given something like a drug, such was the strength of the experience - it was other worldly, out of body type stuff, like a perfect storm.
I came away thinking 'what just happened there?' and for the following couple of days felt like I was glowing, whilst still wondering what on earth had happened. It was all surreal, there was no flirting, it was just talking.
The funniest thing is that I cannot remember what he looked like, I can only remember how he made me feel. He was lovely, ordinary but lovely, and gentle and kind.
This sort of thing doesn't happen to me, I'm Mrs Straightforward, married to Mr Reliable. Sensible sums me up. And I'm in my fifties.
Our paths will be unlikely to cross again and yet I would love to know if what I felt was real and would I feel it again. I'm as certain as I can be that it wasn't a figment of my imagination, and I wasn't drinking either so the night was quite clear in my recollection.
The thought that it's possible to be with someone who makes you feel this way is almost overwhelming for me. I guess that tells you all you need to know about my marriage.
I feel deeply sad that those minutes and the time afterwards may be the only time in my life that I feel like that. I didn't want it to end. If someone had told me that an angel delivered him to me for that brief time I would believe them.
Just thinking like this, and now writing it down makes me feel as though I have betrayed my dh, and yet I know from a rational perspective that I didn't invite this into my life, it was a random event. The problem is what do I do about it? Can I use it as a catalyst to make positive but drastic changes to my life and relationships?
I'm trying to be careful and only examine how I felt, I make no assumptions about if he felt the same, nor any about involving him any further.
Can you experience something so magical and then just bury it and get on with your life?
Has this happened to you? If so how did you handle it?
Thanks for reading.

Pagwatch Wed 08-Jun-16 15:42:12

I'm not sure it was magical, nor that he is the love of your life.

It sounds to me like your marriage was something you settled for and for whatever reason the short time you spent with a different, interesting, nice man made you reassess the life you have spent with a man you don't seem to love.

I think it's less about the man and more about you suddenly realising you settled for something that is a bit [meh]

I'm the same age as you, married 27 years. My DH is lovely. I adore him. Of course we have a routine and highs and lows but he's amazing. I love him

StickTheDMWhereTheSunDontShine Wed 08-Jun-16 15:50:45

You can not possibly have ascertained that someone was the "love of your life" in a 3/4 hour conversation.

But yes, do treat it as a wake up call to try to get more out of your life, whether that's doing more just for you (course, job, volunteering, more involvement with a hobby or whatever), more time doing fun rather than mundane things with Mr Reliable or leaving if the not entirely happy bits are too much compared with the content and happy bits and there is nothing that you can do to fix it.

HubbaHubbaHoob Wed 08-Jun-16 16:36:44

Thanks Pagwatch & Stick for your perceptive replies.
I did struggle to find the right words to describe this in the header, and perhaps failed to convey what I've just found to be a confusing/surreal situation. I've always questioned 'love at first sight' and now I don't. And I was sceptical about people who said they met someone, started talking and basically never stopped and now they've been married x years and the conversation is still going just as strong. Now I can see how that's possible. Shame it's taken me half a century to realise this.
My marriage is floundering and has been for some time, there's another thread on here atm that I feel I should join as the posts resonate so much with me. Perhaps I'll pop in there for support too.
Thanks again.

Pagwatch Wed 08-Jun-16 16:44:05

Yes, get some support to think this through.
I think he really was just the spark that made you realise that while you are 'rubbing along' that's not what you want.

Good luck

MagnifiMad Wed 08-Jun-16 16:46:59

I don't think it's love of your life stuff, but I do know that thunder-struck feeling. I also did not believe in it, thought I was too rational and would over-think any such thing. I was with a long-term (well, long-term for me but I was only 25 so it had been 3/4 years) relationship that I was just rubbing along in but could quite possibly have kept rubbing along in until a proposal and beyond. And then a bloke at work asked me for lunch, along with a load of other people, not a date or proposition or anything. We just clicked, there was chemistry, I was suddenly so aware of him and me and completely attuned to him. It did spur me out of my meh relationship which is a good thing.
As it happens, I did also marry him but I fear that the huge connection - which I stick down to biology, pheromones and the like - was not the best foundation for a lifelong relationship. It's the stuff that comes after that counts. I could have not followed my feelings on this and stuck with Mr. Meh and would probably be always wondering if I'd missed out on one true love. What I have with my husband is good overall but we have pretty serious ups and downs too and, as a pragmatist, I am pretty sure I could have found someone I was more compatible with for a lifelong relationship and also have fancied.
Not a believer in "love" at first sight but I do believe in connections and strong physical reactions. Rambling now.

HubbaHubbaHoob Wed 08-Jun-16 16:48:20

Thank you Pagwatch, I think it will be a work in progress.

MagnifiMad Wed 08-Jun-16 16:48:46

Oh, and we did the talk all night stuff and we still do get into big deep and meaningful conversations but it's much less frequent than either of us would like - life gets in the way. So our thunderbolt wasn't harbinger of forever conversations in the face of all!

Thisisnow16 Wed 08-Jun-16 16:51:25

Be careful, there are lots of men (or women) who can make you feel this way by being good speakers, he didn't work in a people facing/sales job by any chance did he?

Some people are honed conversationalists who can leave you feeling on top of the world, takes years of skill or some are just natural bull shitters or both grin

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 08-Jun-16 16:51:57

Yes, Hubba, I do think it's possible. If we only had crystal balls, we'd possibly wait for The One. The only thing is, you'd need a perfect alignment to ensure that your The One also has you in his sights as his The One... not so easy.

I'm happily married but, I met somebody 8 years ago who I believe was my The One. He'll never know it and neither will my husband know that he isn't The One.

You will get replies from frightened women here - as well as sensible ones who acknowledge that this sort of thing happens but that it doesn't always mean what you think it does.

You won't meet this man again (most probably) so it would be a good idea not to moon about him but use these feelings to rejuvenate yourself into doing things that you enjoy, that make you happy, then you can take stock and reassess what you want from your marriage, deciding whether or not your husband is Your One or not.

iremembericod Wed 08-Jun-16 16:52:22

I had this once with an A and E doctor after a car crash <random>

I was unhappy in my marriage.

I still remember it as being a massive huge enormous (pleasurable) wake up call that there was a better life out there.

timelytess Wed 08-Jun-16 16:54:41

Ah. Its hormonal, I believe. Biochemical, even. My theory is that some men have irresistible hormones. It might be that particular men are irresistible to some women, but not to others. I've done that 'OMG, I'm in ... what? Love? Sex? Limerence!' and my goodness, its powerful. A kind of living hell with outrageously good bits. It passes, though. Three years down the line and I'm quite sane again, though I do keep an eye open for him whenever I leave the house.

HubbaHubbaHoob Wed 08-Jun-16 16:59:02

Not rambling MagnifiMad - you've vocalised it better than I did. I too am rational, and things like this don't happen to me, or if they do I don't notice them.

"I was suddenly so aware of him and me and completely attuned to him." This is how I felt, as though we were in a bubble, and it was intoxicating.
I feel better for knowing that I'm not alone in experiencing this, although intellectually I knew of it, I really need to get some perspective from real people too.
Thanks for sharing.

HubbaHubbaHoob Wed 08-Jun-16 17:18:50

Thank you all for replying. This is just what my confused head and heart needed.
LyingWitch you are so wise (and funny) and great advice - your route through is the one I'm most likely to take, I really don't want to rock anyone's boat. In these early days though how did you cope with the enormity of the emotions? I feel stupidly silly even having to ask that but I'm out of my depth here.
timelytess that sums up exactly how I feel - it's tortuous and makes me feel unbalanced - in a good way - as though I've woken up from a deep sleep and finally opened my eyes.
iremembericod - do you mind me asking if you made changes following your experience? And hoping you're fully recovered from your crash.
Thisisnow16 - I didn't even consider that - but given that I don't get out much then I'm probably very easy prey!

Thisisnow16 Wed 08-Jun-16 17:33:25

I was actually going to start my own thread on pick up type artists that are online with there terrible but workable advice. Google some of these techniques men use to pick women up (this might apply to many of you btw) and see if he used any of them?

The push pull technique also applys to the other lady on the other thread.

tigermoll Wed 08-Jun-16 17:44:34

I was once absolutely struck by the thunderbolt by a chugger who stopped me in the street. It was this instant, overwhelming feeling of connection, of knowing him, somehow -- as if we'd met before, in a previous life (don't believe in any of that BTW), as if we'd been looking for each other all our lives, as if I'd known all my life that one day I'd find him, and here he was. He was totally not my usual type -- small and delicate with a luxurious moustache, and at least a head shorter than me. We looked into each other's eyes and I thought "you're the one". I was barely able to frame a coherent reply to his questions, shut the conversation down and left (didn't even sign up to the charity). When I got home, I paced around, then went out to look for him, but we never saw each other again.

I don't miss him, or wonder what might have been, or think he was really the one, and they'll never be another. It was just...odd.

HubbaHubbaHoob Wed 08-Jun-16 17:45:17

This is what's so odd. He wasn't trying to pick me up, in fact his wife (I later learnt) was sitting opposite him. I think my bullshit radar is fairly well tuned in, though not invincible, and he came across as just a really nice family man. But something happened to me in those minutes, even if he had no intention for that to happen it happened nonetheless. I feel that my head has been turned and I can't get it back on the right way!

HubbaHubbaHoob Wed 08-Jun-16 17:51:06

tigermoll thanks for sharing.
I am seriously wondering that if in these moments there is something bigger at play, a force, or universal alignment of the planets/magnetic fields… THAT's how much my head is turned - I feel like someone has slipped me a legal/illegal high (I wouldn't know the difference).
Can someone please press my reset button and restore my factory settings?

deplorabelle Wed 08-Jun-16 19:09:04

I kind of have this feeling about someone in my life who is so laughably not my type it's unbelievable. I'm a very happily married heterosexual woman but have crazy demented feelings about a female friend. I found them so bizarrely unreal I was sure they would fizzle out within the week but three or four years later I still feel broadly the same.

I've learned to live with it and my stomach no longer lurches every time I see her but I think I will never ever feel normal about her. I know she is a nice but ordinary looking woman of a certain age. To me she is utterly beautiful. She is my friend but not a particularly reliable one and has unintentionally hurt my feelings on several occasions through thoughtlessness. I adore her unconditionally.

It is a complete headfuck that I wish wasn't there and feel terribly guilty about. But I would miss it if it were gone. I don't understand it, but try to live with it and minimise the harm it causes to me and to my marriage.

If I had to guess what has caused it, my current best theory is we are related by blood but don't know it (not outside bounds of possibility). Brothers and sisters separated at birth can have very strong physical attraction to one another. Maybe it's that?

DistanceCall Wed 08-Jun-16 19:35:43

I remember watching Life on Mars when it was first broadcast, and feeling a huge, physical yearning for John Simm. Now everyone has crushes on actors, but this was something else - I was shocked. It was pure, raw hunger, both sexual and emotional.

Of course, my relationship back then was really very tepid - as you put it, OP, just rubbing along. It was a pretty strong sign.

Now I have been with a man I am deeply in love with (and whom I love deeply) for almost seven years, and while I still find John Simm attractive and a very good actor, it has never happened again. It was a displacement of something else.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 08-Jun-16 19:56:20

I absolutely believe in 'displacement' as DistanceCall has said; it's not symptomatic of a poor or bad marriage/relationship, it's possibly a highlight of a special 'thing' that hasn't been present. Hitherto you might never have realised that the 'thing' was missing and then you meet somebody and BAM, there it is.

I actually loosely work with my 'The One' and we work together one day a week. We chat about our jobs and this and that and I can categorically tell you that whilst I'm as close to him as a friend can be, I won't take it further. I don't know what to say in answer to your question, some days I feel despondent and think 'What if?' and then I have to shake myself out of my reverie and remember where I am and what I have - and what I want to keep.

In another life, would I have covered his face in kisses and told him that I was his now? Yes, in a heartbeat. He's 15 years older than me and everything that I would want in a partner. I'm glad that I met him, that I have him in my life and that I have the opportunity to spend time with him as a friend/work colleague. I comfort my turbulent thoughts with the knowledge that I'll never be disappointed by him, nor him with me because we will not take this further than friendship.

I've been an OW, *Hubba and whilst that's not what you're asking, you're married and I hope for your sake that you will not meet this man again because when you feel this way (and I know how it feels), you're in a state of insanity... how else could anybody describe it?

Keep a journal. That is my advice to you, Hubba. Find time to write in it every day. I write random work stuff that pops into my head, things that I've read or heard that I've liked that day - and I acknowledge my thoughts and feelings of Mr Wonderful. My journal is my outlet and it keeps me - and mine (and his) - safe from the tempest that I could easily unleash. I will never let those feelings loose.

sparkly72 Wed 08-Jun-16 19:57:03

Oh that chemistry! It's amazing... Wonderful... Trippy... Exciting - but not the foundation for a marriage or partnership necessarily. You saw a tiny snapshot of him... But no real idea of who he actually is. I've had some spectacularly terrible relationships based on feelings like this. I am now married to the most wonderful man and am very thankful.
Did your dh notice the connection between you and this man?

horseygeorgie Wed 08-Jun-16 20:53:30

I had this actually. It was a few years ago, I was single (happily so) and he was a friend of my cousins. He was at one of their birthday parties. He was divine, gorgeous, funny, lovely. We had 5ish hours at the party talking and then we went out on the town together and I can honestly say I have never had an evening like it. I remember it crystal clear and I felt something so strong for him. I think I did fall in love with him a bit that night.
I didn't pursue it as I was 27 and he was 18 but we are FB friends and talk alot. He is exactly as I had him in my head still, just a wonderful person and still gorgeous.

Arcadia Wed 08-Jun-16 21:03:00

I think it may be when something deep in you (possibly insecurities/parent issues) connects with someone else with a similar issue. It happened to me once, literally fell in love during a conversation, but wore off very quickly when I started dating him and discovered he had some really serious issues and we were completely unsuited for one another. I also had it with my first ever boyfriend we would literally stare into each others eyes for hours on end (as teenagers) then on and off for few years. He was also a very damaged insecure person. I still dream about him and find it very difficult if I bump into him - we have mutual old friends- and struggle hearing about his new relationship and child even though I am happily with my very sensible settled partner and have been for 11 years!
Not saying you are damaged/insecure by the way! - but just that subconsciously you have resonated with one another, or at least he with you.

HippyPottyMouth Wed 08-Jun-16 21:23:37

I had this at a job interview once. The most amazing man I had ever seen walked into the room and when I looked into his eyes, the rest of the world disappeared. I would have spent lifetimes at his feet. He had a partner and child. I eventually got a new job - not the only reason, but one of them. Afterwards, I felt as though a relationship had finished. I've never felt that way about anyone else, before or since. I don't know where he is or what he's doing now, and I do occasionally wonder if I'd still feel the same if I saw him now. I have no reason to think it was at all reciprocated.

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