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Cathy
Cathy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1436
Experience:  Ms, MS.Ed., thirty years clinical practice
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my wife of thirty years. i found out was having ctber sex with

Customer Question

my wife of thirty years. i found out was having ctber sex with her 27 year okd zumba inxtructer, I confronted her and although i know they spent three days by them selves in our camper she says they never had sex. she said it was not going any further they still remain friends and i recently found another text saying your smile lights up my day. she continues to have these late night texting sessions and i am conteplating leaving. we have five children and we still have three at home.
what should i do in your opinion?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Cathy replied 1 year ago.

Cathy :

Hi and thanks for writing, are you there?

Cathy :

Hi are you there?

Cathy :

I am so sorry that I missed you online because surely this is a question that I feel best discussed in chat and not email. I have a problem, after thirty five years of practice, working with couples all the time, with the explanation that your wife and her Zumba instructor spent three days in a camper and there was no intimacy. Help me to understand this part please?

Cathy :

I am not accusing your wife of lying but I have a hard time understanding how two adults attracted to one another spend three days alone in a camper and do not have sex? Help me to understand this please? or explain further how you know this is true. Thanks and very warm wishes on such a tough and painful question. Cathy

Cathy :

And of course let me know when you are back online to talk about this further.

Customer:

I don;t know for sure this is what she tells me and I did confront this instructer and he also denied it. I am thinking that i should leave as this situation is not good for her or me or the kids, but i am really not sure if this is the answer. She has continued to lock her self in the

Customer:

bathroom and have these late night chat sessions she says he is just a friend and that she has know desire to be intimate with him. This \I do not believe if there was no intamcy it would be because of him and he might be gay i am not sure about this. The physical part of this is not my biggest problem it is the intamcy of the relation ship she says things to him that she has never said to me in thirty years how he lights up the room with his smile and how he makes her hot with his touch how sexy he is and so on. This really burns my biscuits!!!

Customer:

I was on line awaiting your response but i could not get into my hotmail for some reason. Hope you can offer me some advice on what i might do.

Cathy :

I am sorry about not having the chance to chat with you online and I completely agree with you about your wife

Cathy :

your wife's emotional intimacy with her instructor being more damaging than any physical intimacy. I agree with you on this entirely but the fact remains that your wife and her friend have already been confronted by you on this so they have made their choices. I suppose my question would have to be what your choice might be?

Cathy :

You see, even after confrontation she is locked in the bathroom all night talking and texting,so clearly there is an infatuation here on her end. The question is whether you wish to wait it out until the flame dies and she returns to her marriage vows or not and only you can know that. Thirty years is a huge investment and no one would blame you for making the choice to stay or to leave. So this is not a question of the right move to make or not make but rather the right move to make for you.

Cathy :

Its really up to you.

Cathy :

We all have very different thresholds about what we can tolerate and what we cannot tolerate so the question really is moot unless you decide how much you are able to tolerate/

Cathy :

She is infatuated with this person whether he is gay or not or whether they were sexually intimate or not.

Cathy :

If you can tolerate this in your marriage (and trust me lots and lots of people do just that) or not is entirely up to you.

Cathy :

Let me know what you think and I am happy to speak to this further and by the way

Cathy :

I know this brings you so very little comfort, but yes, I have seen this same situation numerous times in my practice. So, it might be of little comfort, but you are not alone. Not by a long stretch.

Cathy :

Warm wishes, I know this is rough, Cathy

Customer:

Thanks for your supprt but as i expected there is a difficult decision to be made, My staying here though is hard to swallow when i would see my wife it was a pleasure but now it makes me feel sick and angry, so i do not know if this is going to be possible. Tommorrow she will be going to dance class with him and then every time i see her on her phone i feel like its going on again and who no what. If she did not go back she will say she is miserable so it gos on.

Cathy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1436
Experience: Ms, MS.Ed., thirty years clinical practice
Cathy and 3 other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. Norman Brown replied 1 year ago.

I'm a man and I went through something like that 40 years ago, with my first great love of 8 years. I wonder if your wife is also your first great love? If so, and you are hers too, the power that her infatuation has over her is more understandable, and perhaps more potentially forgivable. But until she not only gets rid of all connection to the Zumba-guy AND feels and shows you Genuine Remorse for what she has put you through, you can't be expected to let your feelings begin to trickle away down the river of your life. To heal from this wound you will need her true and repeated expression of Remorse.

 

I know how terrible your feelings can be. But though I agree with Cathy that the decision is yours alone, I must admit that the RESULTS of your decision are NOT yours alone. For not only you, but also your wife and your 5 children will have their emotional lives altered by your choice: They will keep their sense of a secure and caring family household if you choose to act to contain the damage your wife's actions are causing through your feelings, or they will lose that sense of security with no power to prevent its loss, if you choose to leave the marriage. So how you handle your Entirely Heart-sensible feelings will have significant consequences.

 

Since you know who she's having this feverish emotional intimacy with, and you don't want her to continue, You Can Confront Him Again and Demand that He Cease All Contact with her (and you can damage his reputation if he doesn't). It doesn't matter what they both say, because his behavior is destroying your marriage, and neither your wife nor you want to give in to this destruction of your family that will also Damage the Faith that your 5 children have in the safety and sanctity of their parent-built family home-base. You can also insist that she go to a marriage therapist with you--preferably one with the training called Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, because they treat marriages as being based on the Emotional Security of Secure Attachment, and her out-of-control actions now have undermined your security. (I studied the life-long marriage insecurity of children of divorce and their normally conflicted love relationships for my second doctoral dissertation completed in 1999.) Thus you have 2 allies besides your experts on JustAnswer.com (Zumbaboy & an experienced local marriage counselor/therapist) that can help you move her into terminating her infatuation and toward experiencing the Remorse that can begin the repairing of your wounded marital bond. You can also make an appointment for yourself with an Emotionally Focused Couples therapist (findable online--and I'll be one in Atlanta by January, as well as several women and another man or two) and insist that she go to a session BY HERSELF, so she can cope with her feelings without baring all of them to you at first. ONCE SHE GOES TO A THERAPY SESSION (she'll probably trust a woman more easily than a man) she'll probably have to start working on shutting down her flaming "unlived life" feelings for Zumbaguy, because she will understand what she's doing to her children if she can't regain control. I've seen marriages destroyed this way, and it doesn't have to end that way.

 

I felt what you're feeling when I was 28-29, but I had no legal marriage and no children, and my girlfriend was having sex with the boy (age 19). So I could leave after 1 year of struggling with the emptiness and within 5 years discover that I could love as fully again (even tho that love was doomed) and be glad I would never want to go back. I would not leave my real wife of 27 years now and our 24 year old disabled daughter if that happened again--but she and I have both loved another as well as we were able much earlier in our lives, so we're not foolish enough to let any attraction grow that much. You two probably haven't been through a long love that you lost before you got married, so "unlived life" and "passion with obstacles" are forces your wife has never faced before. Many of us therapists have faced them, and we can transmit those lessons and then help you both get over her emotional affair.

 

If Zumbaboy's actually gay, or just a mamasboy who can't love a grown woman yet, then he may also be gripped by "unlived life & passion with obstacles" as she is. You can ask him what his situation is, that is WHY he's so sure he won't get physical with her no matter what. You have every right to make him feel ashamed for the dishonor that he's doing to your marriage and potentially the harm to your 5 kids. You should use Face-to-Face encounters to maximize the shame he will feel because you are staring into his face when you speak. Of course you need to refrain from loud temper and violence, so that any illegal action (violence) that occurs will be grounds for Him facing legal action. And you also have the ability to damage his reputation, which could destroy his livelihood.

 

This confrontational stuff might sound pretty ugly compared to just getting a therapist involved. But you are fighting to save your wife from destroying the security of your marital bond, and that means you are saving 7 people including yourself. Most specially if a therapist is involved (and I could be more involved, but JA allows only email exchanges and downloads) your wife will eventually be grateful that you saved her from the worst mistake(s) of her life, and your children may never need to know how much your courage ("heart-stuff") to act (beyond your currently poisoned feeling-bond) for the security of your household has saved them from a lifetime of love-insecurity.

 

Obviously this is not a simple Q & A situation. So please ask more questions if you have any concerns. I have added to Cathy's answer because I have a lot more to offer on the subject, since I'm at least 20 years older. I'm grateful for the opportunity to apply my own hard-won experience to your threatened marriage-feelings.

 

Norman Brown, Ph.D., LMFT Florida

Expert:  Cathy replied 1 year ago.
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