I think my wife is going to cheat on me

We have been married for 14 years. My wife is a beautiful and intelligent woman, employed as an executive. We have 2 kids. There has always been a mutual trust between us. About 6 years into our marriage, she started talking often about this younger colleague called Alex, (not his real name) 10 years younger then her. She would tell me how young but so smart Alex is, she would talk about his looks... It went on for a couple of months.

Finally I asked her directly if she is falling in love with the guy, and she just laughed and said that I was crazy.

One day she got ready for work and I noticed that she was dressed in a very sexy way and even put a perfume on. She always dresses very conservative for work and never puts perfume. I asked her why she dresses that way and mentioned that it is not appropriate going to work dressed like that. She didn’t want to talk to me and just ran out of the house looking mad because I asked her the question. I knew that she was sometimes giving joint presentations with other colleagues and a doubt came on my mind right away. I went to check her schedule and found out that she is giving the presentation with Alex. When she came back home, I asked her how the lecture was and if by any chance she did it jointly with Alex. She said that it was someone else, I confronted her with the schedule as a proof and she finally admitted.

The line of trust was broken. She said that she lied because she did not want me to be jealous. Not much came out of the discussion except for me being really disappointed for the first time in her. Anyhow, Alex left the company few months later. I did a research on him, and the guy is a basically a player, sleeping with numerous women found through hookup websites. His online profiles are made to look perfect, yoga, sports, cooking, travelling—his social media friends are 90% women, with a preference for older ones.

So a year passed, we talked about him couple of times. Finally, one day she admitted that she had a crush on him (physical attraction only), and nothing happened between them. I did not make much out of it as I was already suspecting that.

Five years later, she told me that she contacted him, as she wants to do the private yoga classes with him. I was extremely mad and jealous, but did not want to show it. I simply could not understand why she had contacted him, when she knew that it would cause problems in our relationship? For the first time ever I secretly checked her email. They exchanged a couple of emails about yoga and other stuff. They also mentioned going for a drink maybe sometimes. In his last email he gave her a couple of advices regarding yoga and asked her some questions, to which she never responded.

Couple of weeks later I asked her what happened to him. She said that she stopped contacting him as it was going to far for her that he was trying to hit on her... I never found that in any of the emails.

A month ago (10 years after this guy was mentioned for the first time), I was reading an article on my wife’s Ipad, when an email came in. I immediately recognized Alex’s name. I opened it to see a thread. She contacted him first asking him to meet for a lunch, regarding yoga lessons. He was thrilled but is working on a contract in Europe, coming back only in four months. They both agreed to meet as soon as he comes back.

I was devastated, could not understand again why she keeps contacting him. She knows that it would be a huge blow to me if I find out. Her behavior since did not change a bit; we are having sex and overall great time together and talking about the plans for the future. But this whole thing has taken a toll on me—unable to concentrate at work, sleeping disturbances, health problems—Is she about to cheat on me with this guy when he comes back in 3 months? Why did she contact him again? What am I supposed to do now? I did not mention anything to her but don’t know how to manage the next 3 months waiting.

Response:

Even when people are in love with their spouse they sometimes find someone else interesting and attractive—this is normal and happens more than people like to think it does. When people don’t have an outlet to discuss their feelings because they are afraid of hurting their partner or spouse, such feelings can intensify, leading people to make unwise choices.

With that said, the best thing you can do for yourself and your marriage is to share your feelings with your wife. Tell her what you discovered and how you feel. Don’t attack her or blame her—doing so will only create distance between the two of you.

You want to express your feelings in a way that creates empathy for you. Tell your wife that your sad, hurt, confused… try to focus on emotional terms that capture what you’re feeling and don’t cast judgment on her. If you can get her to empathize with you, she’s more likely to take your concerns into account and act accordingly.

These types of problems are very common. Talking about the situation in a way that creates mutual respect and understanding is the key to working through such issues.

 cheating wife

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