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Do people only have affairs if they are unhappy?

(31 Posts)
YellowSunday Fri 14-Mar-14 17:32:53

That is all really.
Why did he do it, was he so unhappy he couldn't talk to me?
Why did she get involved with a married man?

He won't give her up. He wants to go.

Is there any way back?

taratamara Fri 14-Mar-14 17:38:36

Maybe because they're not 'madly in love' with their spouse, which most people would consider to be normal ups and downs of marriage, kids etc so maybe they've not got the maturity to deal with that or can't cope when the going gets tough or are selfish or having a midlife crisis, lots of reasons.

So sorry you're going through this. You can't make someone stay with you and you're worth more than that. Look after yourself. You can and will get through this.

DietCokeMultipackCan Fri 14-Mar-14 17:44:00

Not at all in my experience.

Because the opportunity presents itself and they are feeling a bit selfish then either get carried away or think they can get away with it.

Nomama Fri 14-Mar-14 17:46:00

Because they want to.

A friend of mine's OH simply did not want to stop. Eventually he was so open about it, taking the OW and their new baby to his mum's and introducing us all to the baby, bringing OW out on our nights out, etc.

He was upset when friend kicked him to the curb, he liked her house best, apparently.

I was friends with his family, him, his brother and sister, so I knew a lot about it. He really was unconcerned. Kids or not - and he seemed to have kids by everyone he slept with!

He is tapping 50 now and is a sad fuck, to say the least. But he still thinks he is Jack the Lad.

If anyone remembers Kirt St Moritz, from Dear John, you'll have an idea of what he is like.

LavenderGreen14 Fri 14-Mar-14 17:46:24

there are a million reasons - but mid life crisis, boredom, trying to reinvent themselves, because they can, entitled, selfish, thoughtlessness are some reasons.

It isn't your fault if he has been unfaithful - it is his failing, not yours. Best advice is let him go and keep your dignity intact.

handfulofcottonbuds Fri 14-Mar-14 17:59:14

In my situation, I think it was an escape from reality. We had so many traumas in a short space of time that brought us closer together, I'm talking losing our babies and 2 young babies in the family. However, something clicked in my stbxh and he is now with OW who 'understands' him - very cliché, it's also a cliché that she is a work colleague.

I'm so sorry you are at the start of this yellow. If he wants to go, I'm afraid you have to let him go and concentrate on yourself.

Were you together long? Do you have DCs together?

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 14-Mar-14 18:18:34

There's no way back with someone that doesn't want to come back. As for why someone would have an affair, the reasons are as varied as the individual themselves. Impulse, selfishness, a better proposition, boredom, thrill-seeking ... you can torture yourself trying to work out why. In the case of my exH he hooked back up with an old flame and they ended up getting married. Doesn't make it hurt any more or less knowing that.

The only healthy response is 'his loss'.... but it takes time to get there.

Petal02 Fri 14-Mar-14 18:22:30

We'd only been married just over a year when my first husband began the affair that would ultimately end our marriage. I thought we were still in our honeymoon period, and even with hindsight I don't think he was unhappy.

However he was pursued, he was flattered, he thought he'd get away with it. Yes, he could have said a polite 'no thank you' but he fancied some illicit sex. Things snowballed, he got caught out. But I still don't think he was unhappy at the point the affair started.

TheVictorian Fri 14-Mar-14 18:28:01

The reasons can vary, sometimes its lust, love, ect.

Petal02 Fri 14-Mar-14 18:38:09

But I agree with the poster who suggests that you can't draw someone back if that's not what they want too. And that's soooooo hard to accept.

breaking2bad Fri 14-Mar-14 18:43:18

I think under certain circumstances even the most happiest of marriages can suffer from adultery.

My stbxh and i had just welcomed our dd in to the world, instead of being at home, where we were both struggling to adapt he was with the ow - a confident he got to know through work. We weren't married long but I thought he was the 'one'.

If this ow hadn't come along I think things would have been different, but in hindsight the affair tipped our relationship upside down and he realised that for him to do what he did he couldn't have been happy. I struggled to understand this as why couldn't he be, but with time I actually don't think even before the affair I was that happy. I'm not going to lie recovering after an affair has been hard work and I'm a different person as a result but sometimes it's easier to be objective when you are finally on the outside.

I strongly advise counselling and doing things to keep you occupied - I joined the gym. I thought I'd last a few weeks but been going for a year now!

Logg1e Fri 14-Mar-14 18:46:55

OP Is there any way back?

Of course there is. Remember that he has got a head start; you need to catch up quick. Decide what you want and start to call the shots. It's horrible and difficult, but there will come a time (sooner than you think possible) when you'll be happier than you are now.

worsestershiresauce Fri 14-Mar-14 18:47:27

"He won't give her up. He wants to go."

Don't torture yourself - send him on him way and look on it as a chance to start a new, better life.

Cigarettesandsmirnoff Fri 14-Mar-14 18:57:15

Ah op flowers

What a selfish cunt. Let him go.

You will get through this.

Petal02 Fri 14-Mar-14 18:59:44

Ironically it's often when you genuinely get to the point when you won't have them back, that they do a u-turn. My ex couldn't get rid of me fast enough, but when he found out I'd met a new man, he was horrified.

Greenrememberedhills Fri 14-Mar-14 19:02:47

People have affairs for all sorts if reasons, all to do with themselves.

Cigarettesandsmirnoff Fri 14-Mar-14 20:02:53

True petal

anapitt Fri 14-Mar-14 20:07:26

I think if they are really happy with their partners they are very unlikely to have an affair.

Which is not quite the same as your original question !
Good luck

30SecondsToVenus Fri 14-Mar-14 20:15:40

In my situation, it was purely because he could.

He was getting everything and more at home but he went to the pub most nights and just couldn't say no when the opportunity presented itself. It was mainly one night stands but incredibly hurtful and I spent years wondering what I had done wrong. The only thing I was guilty of was forgiving and allowing it to happen in the first place by being a soft touch and having no backbone

MissScatterbrain Fri 14-Mar-14 20:29:30

Good article about why people have affairs

Donki Fri 14-Mar-14 20:48:25

The article you link to has my probably unless he gets his head ou of his arse and starts thinking with his brain STBXH down to a t.

Hr thinks he is in luurve. In reality he is self medicating for depression. But he lacks any self awareness at all

And as this is early days it hurts so much.

MissScatterbrain Fri 14-Mar-14 21:22:46

Yup, affairs are all about the cheater's issues and coping mechanisms.

BillyBanter Fri 14-Mar-14 21:28:01

Whether he has an OW or not if he is saying he wants to go then you can't and shouldn't stop him. sad

For some they are exit affairs. The marriage is in a rocky patch or no longer working for them but they hang on until they meet someone they attracted to who puts things into focus and makes them realise they no longer want to be in the marriage. Or perhaps they were too cowardly to leave until there was motivation to do so. Or they don't want to be alone so wait until they find someone else.

It's not very honourable but it seems very common.

There are many other reasons too, as already said.

LavenderGreen14 Fri 14-Mar-14 21:48:14

that article describes the actions and depression of my ex so accurately it is astounding.

anapitt Sun 16-Mar-14 09:39:30

what a great article.

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