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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5809
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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My sister-in-law's husband was caught by her having a

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My sister-in-law's husband was caught by her having a cellphone text chatroom chat with a colleague. It turned out that they were texting some very intimate stuff between each other - for how long I do not know. I don't know if it was sexual but they met for coffee away from work a few times.
My sister phoned this woman and told her "hands off" and also complained to their boss. The husband promised not to do it again and she thought it was over. My sister in law then thought that there marriage was mending as they remain friends and get along But then she cauught him again six months ago after he had been fired from work. With texting the same woman - his answer - "we are just friends" seemingly coming off as oblivious to the concept of an emotional affair. He was warned with a 3 strikes your out warning and they continued with their marriage seemingly working at it by getting along.
Now he has been caught again and texting the same woman and she is devastated and wants out. He has come back home and begged for another chance.
My questions:
1. If he claims it is an addiction - why then the same woman? - surely he must have the hots for her - if he was a cruiser then he could find other chicks on the chat groups.
2. He has expressed remorse now a number of times but now that he is working for himself he can go anywhere during the daytime which opens up further suspiscions. She belives him that it is an addiction and that their interactions are just by phone, but really??
3. Should she lay down some rules for the relationship to continue such as
see a counsellor???
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.

Your sister in law's husband does not have a sexual addiction, unless he is hiding a good portion of his extramarital behavior. Sexual addiction does not involve one person, it involved multiple partners with little to no emotional connection to those partners. Addiction involves the need for sex with no thought to a relationship.

Your sister in law's husband, however, has a relationship with this former co worker and is not willing to give it up, even to save his marriage. If your sister in law has given him three chances to stop seeing this other woman and he still will not, then he has no intention of doing so until he decides to stop.

Your sister in law can insist he stop and insist on counseling. But the desire to discontinue the relationship and repair the marriage must come from him. And so far, he is saying he is remorseful but his actions say he is not. No one is going to change unless they want to change and so far he is not interested in changing.

In cases like this, it sometimes takes a separation to startle the cheating spouse into acknowledging there is a problem. Your sister in law may want to let her husband know that he needs to leave the family home and only contact her when he is ready to stop having affairs. Then follow through. No more chances. When he sees she is serious, he may stop his extramarital behavior.

Here are some resources to help your sister in law:

I hope this has helped,


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