Sunday, July 13, 2014

Things to Consider BEFORE You Have An Affair

Every wife has thought about cheating on her husband. Exactly what she's thought about it may vary. Some women will swear to the Lord above that the only thoughts they have ever had on cheating is that they would never and that their husbands had better not. But then there are the ones who are seriously weighing their options. Here are some things to consider while you ponder the unthinkable.

Why are you doing it?

There's never a good reason for it. There may be very understandable and forgivable reasons, but no justification ever exists. So figure out your motivation for doing it in the first place. If you're bored, angry, unsatisfied, you may want to put in a little more work with your husband. As Ludacris once said, "Some say that sex is overrated but they just ain't doin' it right." If ho-hum has hit your sex life or if too many arguments have turned you off, find another solution. You will find it extremely difficult to live with yourself once you work through your rough patch if you have an affair for such a simple reason.

But then there are the more complex reasons. I know people who have done it because they can't afford the divorce. Affording the divorce goes beyond the cost of a divorce. In a divorce, consider the living arrangements for the children, which friends you will undoubtedly have to stop seeing, the cost of child support etc. Justified or not, there are some situations where it's easier for some women to supplement rather than replace. Whatever your decision, make sure the reason you choose is one you can live with.

What do you want out of the affair?

There are long term and short term affairs. You have to be clear before you have the affair of exactly what you want. If you are looking for a full-fledged relationship to replace your own, it's better to wait until the relationship has officially ended. "Once a cheater always a cheater" is a concept that applies to women as well. How will your new belle or beau be able to trust that you will be faithful when you were cheating when you met? This will certainly trip up your road to happiness. If you want short term, does your lover want the same thing? We've all seen the stalker stories on Discovery ID and Lifetime where one person wants sex and the other believes they were soul mates. If what you want is short term, consider how far the other person may be willing to go to keep the relationship going. If what you want is long term, can you handle letting go?

Are you willing to lose everything?

This goes back to my first question. Why are you doing it? If your reasons to have the affair outweigh your reasons to abstain, in theory, your situation is such that you are ready to lose everything. Which is why some say, just end the relationship. When you have the affair, you aren't just risking your marriage. Your friends and family will judge you. Some will forgive you, others will not. Your employer may find out thus ending your employment, especially in an at-will hire state. Are you a PTA member, philanthropist, public figure, community leader? If so, you may do irreparable harm to your career and your community. What will you do when your child's teacher finds out? Will the couples you used to hang out with shun you to protect their own relationships? Being a cheater can be very lonely.

Is this going to be a secret?

If you plan on keeping this affair a secret, can you handle it? In order to keep an affair secret, you have to be able to behave as if nothing at all has changed. You also have to make sure that the lover you choose has just as much to lose if not more than you. A single man has nothing to lose if your husband finds out, but a married man would. But then that elevates your transgressions to include an entirely different family. Can you live with that on your conscience? You have to be very discreet about your affair if you choose to have one. You can't risk being seen in places where you will be recognized. There is always the chance that your spouse's friends may be out one day and see you with your lover. What happens then? How will your spouse react once he or she discovers what you did? Is your spouse suicidal, homicidal, likely to take the children and flee? If you choose to have an affair, you will have to spend more money to travel to far away or private places. Or, you will have to spend all of your time indoors, which may be what you want in the first place.

Will you use protection? 

This seems like such an obvious answer, but Maury Povich isn't famous for political interviews. The fact is, the average woman does not know when she's ovulating. Which means, if she is having sex without birth control or barriers, she will increase her probability of getting pregnant. How do you explain a pregnancy to your spouse? What if you're still having sex with your spouse, will you know who is your child's father? Will your lover cut and run the moment he discovers you're pregnant? The thing to remember is, you are having an affair. The lover you choose, may not feel the need for monogamy. Who are you to criticize? Your lover could bring home everything from HPV to AIDS. If you aren't using protection, you risk infecting your spouse and any unborn children. If you use protection with your lover that you normally don't use with your spouse, you will be discovered.

How will you handle an unplanned pregnancy?

There are a few choices. You can come clean to your spouse and keep the baby. You can come clean and choose adoption. You can have an abortion. You can lie and let your spouse believe it's his baby. Keeping the baby opens your whole family up to ridicule. Having an abortion, right or wrong, will have a lasting emotional effect on you. Choosing to allow your spouse to believe your lover's child is his own presents a number of issues. Your lover may want his child to be with him and his family. Your spouse may become suspicious and decide to ask for a DNA test. Your friends will be burdened with the decision to tell your spouse or remain loyal to you. Your child will grow up not knowing the true identity of his or her father.

My goal is not to sway your decision either way. But one must consider all possible consequences of their decisions. Only you know what the right decision for you will be.

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