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Jennifer, School Psychologist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 397
Experience:  Extensive experience fostering family relationships through consultation / counseling.
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Hi my partner of 15 years had an affair 3 and a half years

Customer Question

Hi my partner of 15 years had an affair 3 and a half years ago. When i found out i was devastated. It went on for 13 months. He ended the affair and for 2 and a half years she harrassed me as he choose me. We got 2 girls 14 and 7. when this other women harrassed me i had to get the police involved. But because my partner denied the affair there was nothing i could do. Then 2 years ago i found out he had another affair when my youngest was a year old. I threatened to leave him so he admitted that one and the other. I could not move on so december 2009 i left him for 14 weeks and we decided to give it another go. I went to see a counsellor even though it was not my fault and that i could and would never ever have an affair. what can be done to move on as i still feel bitter as this women that harrassed me i did not like and he new this before the affair. Why do men cheat is there anyone i can see further. We do not have a sexual relationship as i see her face and feel i am very damaged.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  clairep80 replied 6 years ago.


do you have a legal question or would you like me to transfer this to the relationship section


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
relationship section
Expert:  Jennifer replied 6 years ago.
Hello there,

First let me say I'm sorry to hear you've been through all of this. Learning to trust someone again after an affair (let alone multiple affairs) is not an easy task. It sounds as though you've explored your own feelings about all of this through individual counseling. Have you tried couples counseling as well? If not, I would recommend you pursue that avenue. Couples counseling would enable you both to share your feelings with one another in a safe environment and work toward your goals as a couple under the guidance of a professional.

If he's open to the suggestion, he may benefit from individual counseling as well. His focus may be the exact question you're asking -- Why do men cheat? The reasons for this vary person to person, which is why I suggest he look into it for himself in order to solve this problem. There are many reasons why people choose to have an affair. It's rarely a person's intention to let things get that far, but it does happen (unfortunately). It may be a matter of seeking attention / flattery from others, seeking to find something that is missing from your marriage, or even perhaps a learned behavior that was modeled for him as a child. There could be any number of reasons and the two of you will need to explore the basis for his behavior together in order to move forward. I wish you the best of luck with this!
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Hi thanks Jennifer that has helped me and would psychoanalysis help me too or benefit him as he had a horrid childhood. Would I benefit as just for us to see couples therapy. think he does need individual as he has come from divorced parents who both did not want him as a child. He was given to his father at 12 years old and that is spot on as his father had numerous affairs while he was growing up to which he saw as a child
Expert:  Jennifer replied 6 years ago.
Psychoanalysis could be of benefit for each of you individually as long as you're comfortable with the fact that it is traditionally a much more time consuming model of therapy than brief, solution-focused counseling.

Regardless of the type of counselor / practice you choose I do think it would be good to seek couples counseling in addition to individual work. The reason for this is because he has his own issues to resolve (e.g., childhood difficulties, reasons for adulterous behavior, red flags for the future and how to counteract those feelings / behaviors), you have yours (self-esteem, forgiveness), and you have problems that you'll need to face together (building trust, strengthening your bond as a couple). Having that desire to mend your relationship is the biggest initial hurdle. If you're both willing to put forth the time and effort, you're already on the right course.

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