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I need advice ... quickly

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I am new to this forum … as a matter of fact, this is my first post but I need some advice. The post will be very long, but there's no other way. First of all, I am a married (albeit unhappily) middle-aged professional man and the woman concerned is a divorced, middle-aged woman in an executive position with her state/county government. While some readers may think that emotions of the heart are reserved for the young, I can assure you that is not true. Furthermore, I am not sure exactly how graphic one can be on this forum, so I will try to hold the details to the bare minimum for understanding. So here goes the situation ….


It all started on a sports message board for my college football team. At every home game, the campus if full of tailgating fans. And our sports message board is very active … several thousand members and several hundred posts a day. There was one poster who asked for directions to our tailgate site (blanket invitations had been posted), so I posted rather specific instructions as to how to get there. I didn't think much about it, but one Saturday about a year ago, an attractive middle-aged woman walked up and introduced herself as the one who had asked for the instructions, and seemed pleased to meet me. We talked a while, and I never thought much about it after that. I found out later that she saved my instructions because they meant something to her.


A couple of weeks, maybe a month, later we were still tailgating after the game. It was rather late at night … maybe 10 or so … and I was standing talking to some friends when I felt an arm go around me. I turned, and it was the same woman whose name I couldn't remember at the moment. I gave her a brief hug (we all do that), but her arm remained around my waist. So, I also kept my arm around her. We talked, along with the other friends, and she told me that she was looking for someone at another tailgate and asked if I be her escort while looking. I agreed, and we walked off into the night, her arm still around me. She later told me she did not know I was married, but I wear rings and our first meeting was in broad daylight, and I assume that's the first thing women look for just as men do.


After that, we started contacting by email, and when basketball season came we arranged to meet and talk a couple of times at halftime. She was very friendly, and the mutual attraction was obvious. I could see it in her eyes (which she since told me was true) and I certainly was attracted to her. We continued to email during the winter, and the content became more personal as we grew to know each other better.


We didn't see each other until mid April of this year when we had our spring sports get-together on campus. Once again, the attraction was obvious, and she suggested that I walk with her (to get away from my wife) several blocks away to get some chairs, which I did. We did our "hello" hugs (closer to embraces, if the truth be known) but nothing else. There was no kissing or other inappropriate behavior while we were gone. I noticed that she dressed somewhat provocatively (no bra, but well hidden to the casual observer). We talked a good bit at this function, and when my wife and I left, I hugged her goodbye, and, after checking to see if my wife was looking, she put her head on my shoulder and hugged … just a little extra.


We continued to email, and began talking on the phone, maybe once every two weeks. Around this time, her mother became very ill and she was very busy taking her to treatments, and even took a long leave from work to care for her in the hospital. We talked often, and my concern was real. I had developed a real affection, approaching love, for this lady and she for me, although we did not express it. Her mother died in June, and I comforted her and supported her by email and phone. Our talks grew more frequent … basically daily.


She was constrained to when she could talk, until her daughter went off to college and she was home alone. Our emails were growing much more personal, and even sexual in nature. She mentioned one morning, "how does a short blue skirt, heels, and no stockings sound today?" Of course, it sounded good to me, and the innuendo was obvious. In early August, we finally expressed our affection, our love, for one another. We had grown to know each other extremely well, we opened up to each other and revealed our darkest secrets. For instance, her husband had been convicted of a criminal act (embezzlement), and he had also had two affairs before their divorce twelve years ago. I told her of my sexless and loveless marriage for the past 20 years, the ridicule I endure on a daily basis. We told everything. We were very much in love, she called me "adorable", and said I "swept her off her feet". One weekend, she sent me 36 emails.


Our phone conversations were now up to several a day. She would call me each morning on her way to work, just to let me know. One day, the emails got messed up and she didn't hear from me and called early in the morning when I got to work, frantic that something was wrong.


Things definitely heated up sexually. Since she was home alone, we talked at night for hours almost every night. During this time, she also hurt her back and had to spend a couple of days in the hospital. I sent flowers (with two roses) which she loved and realized the significance.


She always "soaked" in the tub each night. She told me the "flavors" of bubble bath she'd bought and asked me to pick my favorite. You can see that fantasy is taking hold here. One night, she wanted me to call while she soaked, which I did. I "washed" her back and things proceeded from there. To my surprise, within minutes, she had reached orgasm. This is not something I'd planned or even thought of, but I'll admit I enjoyed it. During the soak, she released several more times, then in an instant message followup later that evening, she was still in ecstasy. Here is one quote from our folllowup IM session: "You brought me to total release with just the sound of your voice and the thought of your hands, mouth, and body in me. What a thrilling experience for me. I love you so much baby and know that tonight was just a glimpse at what might happen if and when we feel it is the right thing to do."


We did the phone sex thing (it was totally new to both of us) several times over the next couple of weeks, with her one time reaching "release" within just a few seconds of us beginning our conversation. It was that intense. She couldn't do it too often because, as she said, it uses back muscles and her back was really in pain from the injury.


Football season was arriving, and we knew that we would not be able to act normally if we just casually saw each other at the first tailgate (I failed to mention that we live 200 miles apart, she in the college town). We planned to get together on the Friday before the Saturday game, just for a couple of hours. I managed to come up with a logical excuse with my wife to leave early. We were going to just meet in a city park and talk a while, but the park was too full and we ended up going to a dirt road in the country, totally isolated. She got out of her car, and I out of mine. We looked at each other, embraced, and kissed. Then hands wandered, hers first, and we wound up having a two-hour session. There was no intercourse, but everything just short of it. She wore a mid-thigh skirt, and the same no-bra top she had worn before, but this time not covered up by a jacket. No details for the sake of the forum, be suffice it to say that we now know every detail of each others anatomy, short of "the act" itself.


I was euphoric as was she, but she got home late and got questioned by her daughter, who was there. Of course, she admitted nothing (adults don't have those kind of thoughts, or at least that's what youngsters think). The next day, I saw her at the tailgate and she was very guarded and cool but would not talk about it at the time since her daughter was with her. We met privately at halftime at the game, and she told me she could no longer continue our relationship. She was "mad at herself", not me, and that I had done nothing to anger her at all. She also said there was no one else, it's just that her high moral standards would not let her have a relationship with a married man. We had talked many times about there being no magic switch to be used to turn off emotions. I told her that she must have found the switch, and she said "I had to". She told me she was worried what her family would think if she became a homewrecker, what the community would think (remember, she's a fairly well known employee of the state), and what her co-workers would think. Her conscience had gotten to her, along with nearly "getting caught" by her daughter.


That was a month ago, and she is standing her ground. She wants to continue to be "friends", but I am still very much in love with her and am having a terrible emotional time with the matter. I think she is too but won't admit it. She's good at covering. She must be going through the same thing I am because our love for each other was so very intense.


So I need advice, particularly from the women members. What is she feeling? Did she really tune me out, put me out of her life, or is it just a façade? I just can't get her off my mind, and there's a feeling of hollowness and emptiness constantly. I feel that I may have taken advantage of her emotional vulnerability during the time when her mother died, one daughter got married, and one left for college. But she was the one who picked me out, and it was six months before all those emotional happenings.


Please tell me what to do. Forgetting her doesn't seem to be an option. Some days are better than others, but most are bad with the terrible feeling of loneliness and emptiness.

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Well, let me tell you one thing..That was a great story. I too had a fling with a guy from another state. I'm married and he's not. It lasted for 2 yrs and we talked everyday on the phone and PC. I believed I was deeply in love with him , at the time I was having issues with my husband. I thought it through and I knew it had to stop because I was married and I love my husband. ...


You need to look deep in your heart and tell youself ,You're with your wife for a reason. If you wanted to be with the other woman you would have done what ever it took to be with her. Did you say you were in love with her?


It will be hard to forget her and move on but that's what you have to do now... For you, your wife and the other womans sake. IF you don't you will never find happiness with your wife.


I know the pain... [/b]

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But forgetting and moving on is not that easy to do ... impossible at the moment. And yes, we both expressed our deep love for each other.


Why did I stay with my wife so long? Because of our son, who is now out of college and that is less of a reason.


You didn't say, but what, from a woman's perspective, is she feeling now?

Has she lost all feeling, or is she in misery too? That is what I want to know, and when asked, she only says that she's very good at a facade. She went through a lot of misery with her husband, and raised two daughters on her own and so is accustomed to dealing with relationship difficulties.


But how does she feel regarding me? Surely she must feel something. It doesn't just vanish.

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Sorry, I'm a guy, but I've got to comment...


It's clearer than daylight that this woman made you feel good - very good. She said and did things that many men rarely hear or feel from their partners. She made you feel attractive and loved and all those other wonderful things that we all want deep down in our relationships.


A single (divorced) lady, very close to me, is currently seeing a married man...so I felt compelled to comment here. She loves him very much, and has told him so. He, on the other hand, hides his feelings somewhat, and does not want to jeopardize his home life. Nevertheless, it is very clear to me that he is very much in love with this woman and has even started sleeping in the basement instead of the bedroom with his wife. His home relationship is dull and this new woman has made him compare his wife to her - he consequently sees his wife as being uncaring, unloving and unexciting - all the things a man wants in a woman.


Women have said this over and over again, "A married man will never leave his wife/family." Deep down, you've got to admit that if this relationship continued, you would eventually have to deal with this issue. Till now, you have put it on the backburner, - to your new lady, you may have given the impression that IF things go well with her, you might leave your wife for her (this can't be making her feel too positive). Or, possibly, you may not have dealt with the issue at all, and she may have faced the "truth" that people are just going to end up getting very hurt in the end - better to hurt a little now, than to hurt a lot later, and cause upheaval with it...


I suspect that deep down your new lady friend is asking the following:


If your relationship was that bad with your wife, why are you still with her? Do you have your life in order, and are you ready for a new or real relationship?


In fact, I suspect that she does already feel some pain, everytime you have to leave her, everytime you have to hide her, everytime you have to act differently with her around your wife, everytime you have to cut your phone calls short or only call at set times - a woman wants all or nothing (and her kids will want the same for her).


You'll need to be very honest with yourself - assess your life and live the life you choose to live.


Trust me, she loves you a lot - but she cares what you care about (your family), and she has some good support at home that requires her to respect herself as well. You can't blame her for that.


sorry...i know it's not easy.


best regards

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God David, what an excellent answer. You said everything that I know must be true, but you verbalized it to the extent that I can see her side a liittle clearer. Perhaps I've been wallowing in my own self pity, but the fact remaiins that I love her very much and I can't help it.


I hope she still loves me, even though she is not willing to say so ... she must be suffering some of the same misery that I am. It just doesn't go away that easily, unless there is some spite involved, and there is none here.


I'm not angry with her at all ... I guess "hurt" is a better descriptor. So I don't want to upset her at all, but right now I'm having a very hard time dropping it.


I too have not slept in my bed for some time ....

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Just to give you an example of my homelife ... we're leaving tomorrow to go to yet another home game, 200 miles away. My wife already has the SUV packed, so she's taking my car to work and I'm taking the truck.


I came in and said nicely "I've got to put gas in the car before you can take it to work tomorrow."


The response was, with almost hysterical voice, "GD I'd better not go out there in the morning and find the tank almost empty. S#$%!"


Note I had already said I needed to put gas in the car, and would do it.


See what I mean? Or am I wrong?


My "other" woman ... my love ... has never raised her voice to me, never ridiculed. Now you know why I love her. It's not so much sex, it's the feeling of love.

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Gary, I can understand how you fell into this situation.....it was just bad planning on the part of Fate that you ended up in your current situation with you still being married. Have you made any plans to divorce your wife? More to the point, do you have any feelings left for her? I don't mean to dwell on her, since the issue is this other woman, but obviously the first woman in the equation IS your wife.


You've said that your son is now in college, or soon to be done-he won't be dramatically affected by a divorce, or at least should understand that your happiness and the happiness of his mother are what's important, as well as his. To me, it's a sham to "stay together for the sake of the children." My parents had a miserable time while I was growing up, and I wished almost daily that they'd just DIVORCE already so my sister and I could have some semblence of normalcy.


But I digress-in answer to your question, of COURSE she still cares about you. (Your ladyfriend.) One doesn't turn one's feelings on and off like a switch, and I have no doubt that she cares for you as much as you do for her. But, as she stated, she also has high moral standards and her position in the community to think of, which will weigh heavily on her. No woman wants to be "the other woman"....I myself have been that woman, and it gets extremely depressing knowing that the man you love is only with you because he was able to steal a few hours away from the one he's supposed to have dedicated his life to, and also know that, after he's done with you, he's heading back to his wife/girlfriend. Doesn't do much for the self-esteem, either. You tend to feel used, no matter how much love is expressed or how intense the emotions feel at the time.


Bottom line-I think that, if the circumstances were different, i.e. you were divorced or at least on the WAY to divorce (which I'm CERTAINLY not condoning, I suggest making every effort to amend things with your wife first, but suspect you've already done so in that 20-year timeline you mentioned) she would be much more amenable to the idea of being with you. Women do NOT want to play second-string. It feels....cheap, for lack of a better word. A woman wants to know that she's the only one who's cherished and loved, and the single focal point in a man's life. THAT'S what a relationship is built on, not lies and half-truths and sneaking around.


Rest assured (if you can call it that) that your lady friend is going through the same thing you are, unless she's extremely callous. BUT, she also has standards she wishes to uphold, and respects herself AND you too much to place either of you in jeopardy emotionally or mentally by carrying on an affair. I would highly suggest that you figure out why it is you're staying in a loveless marriage and why you're not taking steps to extricate yourself from misery, so you can move forward, either with this woman or with someone else who can give and receive love the way it's meant to be shared!

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Mar, I certainly appreciate your response. In fact, I appreciate all the responses thusfar. All have been serious, and not one has been judgemental. For that I am grateful. This is a very serious problem for me.


I'm going to try to answer your questions as best as I can, Mar, as I have the others. I have made no discrete plans to divorce, but I have certainly thought about it and done some internet research on the procedure. Of course, if I did it because of another woman, then I would be at the mercy of my wife, and there would be none. She is full of hate for the world and doesn't even know it. Plus, my "ladyfriend" would not stand for that to be the reason. I'm still thinking that one over. My son, whom I believe the sun rises and sets on (and she knows that) is understanding but also very sensitive. I think he could handle it, but am not positive. I've obliquely addressed the situation with him and he seems to understand, but when it came down to it, who knows. He's out of college, but in graduate school at the moment. So ... I'm thinking about divorce, yes.


And why haven't I already. Before my son got out of college, you know my answer. The simple answer probably is that I'm scared to ... scared of being alone, even though the situation I'm in is so bad ... at least it's a known quantity. And I couldn't really ask my ladyfriend to sit around and wait.


I'm glad to see also that you're certain she still cares. No, she is not callous unless I've been taken for the world's wildest ride. And I'm sure I haven't. And all the other reasons you gave about her thoughts, feeling cheap, I also know and appreciate. I would not intentionally hurt or cheapen such a wonderful, caring woman. She's had enough pain for many people already in her life. Many of your comments (sneaking around, etc.) really hit home. No, I'm not perfect but I try not to be selfish but I apparently can be. That's why I want opinions from women.


My thoughts now are to send her an email and tell her all the things ... how I understand her reluctance to get involved and why. She knows I still care, and like you say, I'm sure she does too. I just don't want to hurt her or irritate her. I'm almost afraid to do it by phone ... I can assemble all my thoughts in writing much better.


But the bottom line is, I love her very much. She is the nearest thing to perfection (not physically, but inside, like your signature says, Mer) that I've ever known. She told me I had so much love bundled up inside, just waiting for someone to give it to, and she was right. And I'm willing to give it to her.


My main concern is my son. I want to maintain his respect and love, and I don't think that is a problem.


I didn't mention it, but our conversations were not all about sex. We talked for hours about ourselves, each other, family. We revealed secrets to each other that no one else knows. I've never felt more comfortable talking anyone in my whole life. No one alive knows more about me now, and I feel that I know more about her than anyone else. And isn't that what love is all about ... openess, sharing, empathy, sympathy, non-ridicule? Sex is only the icing on the cake, and is the highest gift a woman can give a man, and a man can give a woman. It's not gymnastics, it's the ultimate symbol of love and passion.


Keep responding, please.

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You're absolutely right. Sex IS the icing on the cake, not the be-all and end-all importance people place on it, unless they're in an entirely loveless, sexless relationship. I myself am in a sexless relationship, but have a LOT more going in communication than most couples I know...I know I never have to fear rejection from my partner in anything I talk about, even if we don't have physical intimacy.


You're doing the right thing....taking your son into consideration, since obviouly his feelings would be a factor, but the focal point is on YOU, and that's what you, and he, need to realize. It's YOUR marriage, YOUR happiness, YOUR ability to get on with your life. Not his. He has his whole life ahead of him, and, as he gets older, he'll realize that what you did now was for your sanity and self-respect, because you can't take care of others, him included wholly, until you take care of yourself. I firmly believe that.


Like I said-take baby steps. Let your wife know you're unhappy, suggest counselling, if you haven't already, and, if she's not amenable to any other ideas, approach divorce. I HATE seeing couples in distress, and staying together for the wrong reasons, i.e. " the children." "The children" are more than capable of handling divorce, especially at an older age! I've heard many, many children say they wished their parents would just split up if it meant bringing some harmony to the family.


You have to start living for YOU at some point. It's not all about your child. If you're unhappy, it's going to trickle down to your son, and he's going to realize it as well, and, if he's grown up with any kind of moral upbringing, he'll realize that you need happiness as well.


Do what's right for YOU, and your wife, and your child. Your wife may not realize it, but this may be what she needs as well, if she's that unhappy with you, and that caught up in the petty things of everyday life.


But ultimately, it's about your happiness, and what makes you whole. Dont' let ANYONE take that away from you (within reason...lol). You're a strong man, and you have a lot of life left in you.....LIVE IT.

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my advice is leave your wife. If she's talking to you like in your example, its obvious that you are both unhappy, so it is best for both of you. Is there some reason your wife is acting like that with you that could be put right? just a thought. From what you've said i'd say of course this women still loves you, she gave her reasons for calling things off and they were justified in that you are married, she didnt say she doesnt love you. You could ask her if it would make a difference if you got divorced to be certain before you leave your wife. Then again, if you are so unhappy in your current situation you should really find the courage to leave anyway,as hard as it mught be. Although your point of view seems to be that your wife is unloving and i can understand you wanting to be out of the situation and have found someon else you feel for. Please consider her feelings in this, her husband is having an affair thats hard enough for any anyone to deal.Good luck

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