When most people think of an affair, they think of a physical affair. However, affairs don’t need to be physical in nature at all. It’s possible to have an emotional affair that can be just as damaging to your marriage as a physical affair. Here's how it can start, what you can do to prevent it, and how you know if your spouse (or you are) is being unfaithful.
More inspiration about emotional affairs:
Ways People Become Emotionally Unfaithful
People don’t usually set out to become emotionally unfaithful. Instead, it usually just happens slowly over time. Friendships or relationships with co-workers may slowly turn into emotional infidelity over time.
At other times, people may begin developing friendships with strangers over the internet. Over time, those people may become confidantes that can greatly damage a marriage.
Behaviors that Constitute Emotional Infidelity
If you are engaging in conversations with people that you wouldn’t feel comfortable having your spouse overhear, it’s likely that you’re having an emotional affair. For example, secret text messages, emails, or phone calls with an opposite sex friend that you wouldn’t want your spouse to overhear are likely warning signs that you’re being emotionally unfaithful.
Developing an emotionally intimate relationship with someone other than your spouse will hurt your marriage. Keeping secrets with an opposite sex friend or getting your emotional needs met by others interfere with the intimacy in marriage.
Often, people who feel lonely in their marriage are most susceptible to having an emotional affair. A wife who feels her husband is emotionally unavailable or a husband who feels neglected by his wife may turn to others outside the marriage to meet their emotional needs.
Prevent Temptation to Become Emotionally Unfaithful
Become proactive in preventing an affair. Avoid becoming emotionally intimate with others of the opposite sex. If you find conversations becoming frequent or overly personal, take immediate steps to rectify the situation.
Work on remaining emotionally connected to your spouse. Focus your efforts and energy on your communication and your connection. Become aware of any outside relationships that may be a threat to your marriage.
Keep your marriage a top priority. If you are feeling distant from your spouse or you are feeling lonely, resist the temptation to get your needs met elsewhere. Work on fixing your marriage instead.
If you think you're being emotionally unfaithful, it doesn't mean your relationship is doomed. Emotional affairs get messy and are a slippery slope. They can lead you to do things that you would never imagine. That being said, they are very common and we talk about them in our free marriage book. Pull yourself out of the emotional affair by starting with Chapter Two called "Seal your Exits", and do just that. Seal your Exits and walk away from being emotionally unfaithful.
Many couples that had affairs have successfully been able to repair their marriages after working with us in our 2 day private retreat format. Contact us to see how we can help you deal with the rupture that was created.
Be in touch,
Rivka and Shlomo Slatkin