Talk

Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

men and affairs

(75 Posts)
notconvinced Tue 10-May-05 00:50:53

why do men have affairs and can a leopard really ever change it's spots

lilibet Tue 10-May-05 01:03:24

going to bed now so can't stay around for the rest of it, but just thought I would point out that women have affairs too!!

elsmommy Tue 10-May-05 08:14:44

I cheated on my previous boyfriend loads of times I was young!!
But I've never cheated on my dp, so a female leopard can change her spots!!
Whats the story?

notconvinced Tue 10-May-05 08:53:52

married for 15 years in which time i was faithful but he clearly wasnt. We have been apart nearly 2 years now and its only since that time people have been eager to come forward with the stories and he has admitted to them all but says he regrets it. Basically he has not got over breakup and would love to try again, says it is only now that he realises how much he loves me etc etc. I dont understand and i can't believe that i trusted him. I feel angry and like i have lost all faith in men.

elsmommy Tue 10-May-05 08:58:09

Would you like to try again?
If he did it in the first few years and was then faithful for the next 10 or something I'd say he could of changed

notconvinced Tue 10-May-05 09:05:45

Well we have never actually discussed when, where, who etc but i feel in one way that i need to go through it all i dont know why, it would be painful and humiliating. As for trying again im just not sure, it is very confusing. Why put myself through it when i have been doing ok on my own....don't think i could bear the thought of not knowing where he is all the time if you see what i mean...isnt love based on trust after all

elsmommy Tue 10-May-05 09:08:24

Has it gone too far for him to earn the trust back? I know it would take a long time though.

lou33 Tue 10-May-05 09:38:32

think men and women are equally capable of affairs imo

feelingold Tue 10-May-05 10:07:44

I had been married to my ex-h for 13 years when he had an affair with my best friend. She was unhappy in her marriage and saw that I was happy in mine and was jealous so she went after my ex-h and he was weak and very flattered so the affair started. I found out after it had been going on for 3 months, he ended it and we agreed that we would give out marriage another go, but she was still ringing and texting his mobile. He wanted us to move away and start again away from her, but like you whenever he was out I was continually tortured by the thoughts of 'where is he' and 'who is he with' to the extent that one day things didn't seem right, so I followed him and he was meeting her so as much as it broke my heart I told him to pack his things and leave.
That feeling of not being able to trust him was just terrible (as I had always trusted him before this) and as much as I loved him I just could not live like this as it was tearing me apart.
You have to decide if you can live like this and eventually get these thoughts out of your head, unfortunately I couldn't so we divorced.
He begged me to take him back on several occasions saying he totally regretted what had happened, but I just could not take him back, all I saw was him and her, my so called best friend.
I have remarried (much to my ex's disgust) and am very happy with a fantastic man who I do trust.
I do not think that my ex-h would have gone out looking to have an affair, but when she handed it too him on a plate his ego was boosted and he jumped at the chance.
Can a leopard change it's spots, maybe, but I could not give him a chance I am afraid I had been hurt enough, but only you know your husband and you have to think long and hard whether you think that he can and whether you are prepared to give him that chance.
Good luck to everyone who is going through this at the moment, and put yourselves first.

macwoozy Tue 10-May-05 10:33:19

I ran a pub for many years, and witnessed many affairs going on. It was sad to see, knowing their wives were at home totally clueless about the activities of their husbands. Alot didn't keep it quiet neither, they seemed to be quite proud of it.

I'm not saying that the women didn't have affairs also, I just presume that they kept their affairs pretty much hidden.

Bugsy2 Tue 10-May-05 15:35:54

notconvinced, I would say a man who over the years has found it so easy to deceive you would be almost impossible to trust. I'm also not sure that a serial adulterer could manage to be faithful without some kind of therapy. However, I'm not an expert - that would just be my gut feeling.

HappyDaddy Tue 10-May-05 17:04:21

The same reasons that women have affairs, notconvinced.

flum Tue 10-May-05 17:07:19

1. They get bored

2. They can lie

3. Life is to short to sh*g one person til you die.

Same reason women have affairs really. Except i am about to get married and can't imagine ever sh*gging someone else. Will probably feel differently in 10 years though.

Why are we all so precious about it is what I want to know.

kama Tue 10-May-05 17:11:01

Message withdrawn

HappyDaddy Tue 10-May-05 17:15:34

Amen kama.

louee Tue 10-May-05 17:19:00

affairs are a definate no no!!!personally i would never trust a woman as theyre the worst(yes i'm a woman and i'm saying women are the worst) but all i can say is my Dh would never have an affaif as i would personally castrate him.....lol

WideWebWitch Tue 10-May-05 17:39:49

IMO people (not just men) have affairs because

they think they'll get away with it
no strings stranger sex is sometimes attractive, and then it turns into something more if it's an affair as opposed to a shag
they're flattered
it's a million miles away from the responsibility/drudgery of family life
they don't, mostly, think they'll get caught
sex
excitement, adrenaline rush
they don't really care about the relationship they're in
they are concerned that their partner is unfaithful/will be and so they want to get in first (applies more to younger people I think)
they're insecure, want reassurance re attractiveness

I've been unfaithful in some relationships but never (and never would be) in this one. When I was a young slapper my experience and that of my friends was that men (married and single) rarely turn down no strings sex. <sigh> But this doesn't mean I think all men are persuadable, I trust my dp and I trusted ex dh and was right to in both cases I think.

When I went out to work last year I totally understood why men are tempted (and sometimes succumb) to an affair with someone who is
well groomed
has no children
has a LOT of energy/time to lavish attention on them
is offering to be fantasy woman in terms of no committment/drudgery/long term stuff
is attentive
is sexy whilst being attentive: How Was Your Day Darling? (as opposed to 'There's a poo in that nappy and ds needs a bath/nits doing/other vile chore here')
is nothing to do with the hard work that is family life

I absolutely wouldn't do it (were I ever to get any offers and that's not likely in the forseeable future, I do realise this!) because I love, adore and fancy my dp like mad and nobody could ever, ever measure up to him. Anyone else would, I'm sure, be a huge disappointment (and, as my sister said "and no-one can say you haven't been around" [reformed slapper emoticon here]) but fwiw those reasons are, I think, why people have affairs. All looks very reasonable and understandable but actually, I do think extra marital affairs are always wrong. I don't think they're excusable and I wouldn't forgive dp if he did it: game over as far as I'm concerned.

haven Tue 10-May-05 20:37:44

society says it is o.k. for men to have affairs...it is in their nature they say...sounds like crock to me....

think about it..when a woman cheats no one says to forgive her....but when the man cheats... everyone says..he is a good provider..he is a good dad...BESIDES this TIME...he is a good man...always excuses for those sorry sacks of POO POO...

flum Wed 11-May-05 13:27:39

I have to say I don't think an affair should always be a deal breaker.

I know a number of marriages that have survived affairs and I know of two that have definately been improved for the shake-up that the the affair created.

I would place the continuation of my marriage and my family slightly above my personal pride and dented trust if my husband was unfaithful. I hope he could see beyond the trees for the wood too.

I think nowadays people break up a marriage at the drop of a hat and the kids are passed from pillar to post and go through difficult changes and switchbacks.#

Sometimes I think people should just suck it up and learn to live with it.

The older generation did it all the time and it meant they had someone to grow old with. Our generation is in danger of becoming populated with sour, bitter, wizened old singletons with dysfunctional kids.

Sorry but thats my view. Having said that I have not fully shared my view with my betrothed as I certainly don't want to encourage it.

And for that matter if he did do something I really hope he can keep it to himself and protect me from the selfish need to 'confess' in a feeble attempt to clear ones conscience and regain some semblance of self respect. People who confess to affairs in the hope of forgiveness are far more pathetic to me than people who: do it, regret it, but then live with it for ever more and save their spouse the pain of knowing.

I don't consider an affair when a partnership are not married to be on the same level as adultery since that couple have not made a legal promise to each other.

HappyDaddy Wed 11-May-05 14:56:36

Flum, people are less inclined to put up with what previous generations have. Why should you stay with someone and be miserable, if they cheat on you?

sistermoon Wed 11-May-05 15:27:19

flum an affair is an affair regardless of a piece of paper. It is just messier if to resolve if there is a piece of paper

flum Wed 11-May-05 15:47:35

I don't think you should stay and be miserable. I think you should stay and make an effort to make it better, make the best of your situation. If you really can't or you don't want to then don't but its good to try.

flum Wed 11-May-05 15:52:23

I just like the idea of people having discreet but interesting affairs that afford them improved sexual skills and enable them to release the tension in their main relationship. I just think it can help and is quite a natural urge for both sexes.

Bugsy2 Wed 11-May-05 16:05:47

Alot depends on your definition of an affair.
If the affair was just a one night stand & purely about physical release then IMO, it is easier to forgive & move on. However, a proper affair & all that it involves, is a massive betrayal of trust and extremely hard to recover from (I speak from experience).
When this happens you need to work out why the person had the affair: just sex, misery with current relationship, in love with someone else, serial adulterer etc etc. I think some of those situations are recoverable & some are probably not.

maturer Wed 11-May-05 21:53:46

notconvinced, I am depending on that being possible- or rather my leopard changing back to the spots we both enjoyed for about 20years until he briefly changed them- lost the plot- and had an affair with a work colleague!It is so easy to say black and white when it's not happening to you. however when you suddenly, without warning find yourself in the middle of some soap opera script with the man you have had 20 fantastic years and 3 great children with- your best friend in the world- acting totally not like he is or ever has been, then it's not so straight forward.I agree to a great extent with flum's comments. It is so easy to tell him to get lost because you are so hurt and betrayed, but it's not that simple. When you know how great you've been together and what a fantastic family life you've all enjoyed for so many years, then -for me-it was time to see where the scales tipped. 20 years of a great relatinship v a few months of madness by my dh ( which after a lot of counselling we have come to realise was not a lot to do with us more to do with him and work and "mid-life crisis" etc)Do you throw it all away because you feel so abjectively betrayed and hurt? No I decided, I don't for one moment think my dh is the serial type, if it ever happened again then no way would I even consider listening to the whys but I have, over a year on "come to terms " with what he did and even though I still have days of pain and despair, utter disbelief at the extent of his betrayal, I can not give up on us and we are getting stronger and closer because of what happened.So to go back to your original question- I depend on the leopard changing his spots (in my situation)and have every faith he did so some time ago and became again the person I fell in love with.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now