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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi, I’m 40, married 16 yrs. Hit a rock recently. Might as well put it out there. DH is currently deployed. I’ve been struggling with isolation and depression. Been struggling with depression all my life on and off. Found myself talking to someone I met online, innocent friendly chatter at first, found out we had a lot in common, personality wise, etc. I caught myself thinking about this guy more and more, feelings developing, things being said that probably shouldn’t have been. All of a sudden realizing this is wrong, what am I doing, we are both married, feeling guilty. Learned about “having an emotional affair”, something I’ve never really even heard of or thought of before. I told him I had to leave, it seemed like the right thing to do and he seemed to understand. Maybe men are better at compartmentalizing and carrying on without it affecting them. As it didn’t seem to bother him. I was agonizing over it because I think my body was telling me this is a threat. So I stopped it and told my husband about it. He wasn’t terribly upset but obviously not happy.

I’ve been trying to get this guy out of my head and move on. I know its just a ridiculous fantasy that I’m still trying to get out of now a couple weeks later still trying to cut him out completely. I feel like I’m on a roller coaster and need to get off. How do I get rid of these intrusive thoughts now, move on and let go. I just want to try to go back to my life but ended up in this messed up situation of my own making.
 

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Well you could talk to the guy's wife. That will throw some cold water on the whole thing. "Hello I am some internet stranger who your husband and I have been exchanging love messages together. Soon I will be sending pictures! How is your day, your kids?" I mean is all you know about this guy what he writes online?

He could be some guy in his Mom's basement for all you know. I mean I am the King of England, and The Rock. Besides that a married man, doing this means he is not the catch you think he is. Don't worry though when he moves out of his Mom's basement you and your kid and his kid can have a great life together.

First of you can never talk to this guy again. It is like drugs and it works the same way. Just like hard drugs most people can't repeatedly casually take them, and once the addiction starts they can't go back to them.

I would suggest you get out and do stuff, productive stuff. Preferably in large groups to get your mind off it. Learn something, take a class get a new skill. Do something to focus your mind on something more healthy.

Read SurvivingInfidelity.com read all the stories and picture the betrayed spouse (BS) as your husband and the Wayward Spouse (WS) as you. This is what this new relationship will do to him, and your kids. Read all the stories. If you cheat the WS is the group of people you will be putting yourself with, some of those people are truly monsters and you won't be able to say you aren't. That will be like a cup of coffee to sober you up.

But in the end if you do all that an you are still incapable of straying then you should think long and hard about your marriage. If you are so unhappy that you are going to go against your morals then you need to talk to your husband and ultimately decide if you are capable of being married to him. This is better then you cheating.

Understand I am not advocating for you to divorce him, but it's better to break up a relationship then it is to dehumanize someone by cheating on them, hurting everyone, your kid's father, your kids, and including yourself in the process.

You better wake up, you are in a trance and you are about to burn down your house with your whole family in it.
 

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Hi, I’m 40, married to my DH for 16 yrs with a 7yo......

... Found myself talking to someone I met online, innocent friendly chatter at first, found out we had a lot in common, personality wise, both struggling from anxiety etc. About 2 weeks into it I caught myself thinking about this guy more and more, feelings developing, things being said that probably shouldn’t have been. All of a sudden realizing this is wrong, what am I doing, we are both married, freaking out, full on panic and feeling of guilt. Learned about “having an emotional affair”, something I’ve never really even heard of or thought of before. I told him I had to leave, it seemed like the right thing to do and he seemed to understand but definitely wasn’t agonizing over it the way I was. I guess people can compartmentalize it and carry on an affair without it affecting them. Well I was agonizing over it because I love my husband and I think my body was telling me this is a threat. So I severed it, or tried. I also told my husband about it. He wasn’t terribly upset but obviously not happy. He knows how isolated I’ve been and that he hasn’t been able to be there as much as I needed him.

I’ve been trying to get this guy out of my head and move on. I ended up talking to him again after my panic cleared thinking we could have a casual conversation or some type of closure. No. There was just too much there. Should have known better. Felt even more entangled. It’s like a drug, a ridiculous fantasy that I am still trying to get out of now a couple weeks later. Not that I will ever meet this guy in RL. But I feel like I’m on a roller coaster and need to get off somehow. I love my husband and want him here and I stupidly allowed this other person, who is seemingly a great guy, to fill the void because it felt good. How do I get rid of these intrusive thoughts now, move on and let go. I just want to try to go back to my life but ended up in this messed up situation of my own making. I need to stop I know that. I just feel so completely alone and weak.
You've been military for a while and know what that entails. What site did you meet this married man on--this seemingly great guy? Strong feelings after two weeks--wow. How did your husband react when you told him that you had returned to an EA with the other man even though you loved husband and knew it was wrong? Maybe, you have an open marriage and while he is deployed anything goes for each of you? I'm sure husband feels alone and weak too.

Read about limerence--I insist! If you truly love your husband, divorce him if you won't be faithful or find some strength and integrity and do the moral thing. Did you come from a family were marriage vows were meaningless?
 

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I agree, some help from other military wives would be a great start. A quick internet search found this forum Military Significant Others and Spouse Support - MilitarySOS.com which has a subforum on Long Distance Love half way down the page. It's worth checking out as I'm sure there are many people there willing to help you navigate your situation.

Spend your time on a site like that and not online with this guy. Other things that might help, sit and look over your wedding album to remind yourself of why you married your husband. Write out the story of your relationship. Write a letter to your husband telling him why you miss him so much, etc. Even if he never sees it, it will remind you of why you love him so much and would never want to hurt him.
 

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Just remember that person on the other side isn't who you think they are.

EVERYONE...myself included......wants to feel wanted. It can be a drug when your down and out and need some attention.

The fact that you came for help is a sign your gonna pull through. It was a smart move to seek help, and very very smart to tell your husband.

Find some support...do some reading about EA affairs..knowledge is power....but not as powerful as staying true to each other.


Thanks for coming here ..... we all appreciate your husbands service.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I appreciate all of the replies, even if it’s harsh, maybe I need to hear it. Just FYI for the ones who asked, I met him on a gaming site and we randomly started up a conversation. I know his identity, who he is, what he does etc so it’s not an anonymous person in a basement, not that it matters. It’s true, I don’t REALLY know him. I have read a lot about people who have had to deal with their SO’s affairs and I have tried to think rationally about what is going on. I looked into “limerence”, and yes I think that is exactly what is going on with me. I’ve got to get my s*** together and cut him out of my life. Just trying to figure out a strategy that minimizes the temptation of trying to contact him again because unfortunately despite me knowing that this is how it’s got to be it is also very painful and hard to let go. Otherwise I would not be in this predicament and would have been over it already. Just being honest...
 

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The first step is admitting you have a problem. WTG on that.

Go no contact with him. No emails, no phone calls, nothing.

How much longer is the hubby in the military for?

You may need to cut out all opposite sex friendships. Instead focus on the family, the kids. Do you have any close girl friends? Best friends you can spend more time with, get emotionally close with?
 

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Write a letter to your husband. Take your time. Express your regrets....tell him how sorry you are....tell him all the things you love about him.

Read it to him next time your on the phone.
 

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I appreciate all of the replies, even if it’s harsh, maybe I need to hear it. Just FYI for the ones who asked, I met him on a gaming site and we randomly started up a conversation. I know his identity, who he is, what he does etc so it’s not an anonymous person in a basement, not that it matters. It’s true, I don’t REALLY know him. I have read a lot about people who have had to deal with their SO’s affairs and I have tried to think rationally about what is going on. I looked into “limerence”, and yes I think that is exactly what is going on with me. I’ve got to get my s*** together and cut him out of my life. Just trying to figure out a strategy that minimizes the temptation of trying to contact him again because unfortunately despite me knowing that this is how it’s got to be it is also very painful and hard to let go. Otherwise I would not be in this predicament and would have been over it already. Just being honest...
You met him on a gaming site, does that mean you have met him in person or just online?
If just online then anyone can fake a ID on line. If he is married he may have done this before.
Some people online can tell a lot about you just by talking with you, you are lonely, missing
someone, etc. Stop contacting him and get counseling from the military, since your husband is
deployed they will help. At least you now realize you have a big problem that you need help with.
Go get that help and do not let this turn into a bigger problem.

Start today.
 

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I don't think that you have any insight whatsoever into your capacity for good until you have some well-developed insight into your capacity for evil. -JP
 

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I appreciate all of the replies, even if it’s harsh, maybe I need to hear it. Just FYI for the ones who asked, I met him on a gaming site and we randomly started up a conversation. I know his identity, who he is, what he does etc so it’s not an anonymous person in a basement, not that it matters. It’s true, I don’t REALLY know him. I have read a lot about people who have had to deal with their SO’s affairs and I have tried to think rationally about what is going on. I looked into “limerence”, and yes I think that is exactly what is going on with me. I’ve got to get my s*** together and cut him out of my life. Just trying to figure out a strategy that minimizes the temptation of trying to contact him again because unfortunately despite me knowing that this is how it’s got to be it is also very painful and hard to let go. Otherwise I would not be in this predicament and would have been over it already. Just being honest...
Quit that gaming site.

And seek professional help for your issues, depression, etc.
 

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@Morven,

In 57 days and a wake up, I'm going to be marrying my former-military fiance. My son was in the service. All the "menfolk" in my family served. So I've been in your shoes AND I even also had an online affair with someone I met in a game. I am proud to say that I am a FORMER wayward spouse, and I worked hard to earn that "Former" title!

May I give you a few suggestions/tips/recommendations that helped me?

First, for the times when you are apart, one thing that really does help me that is silly as can be but also makes it a little more tolerable is doing what I did above: a countdown. I ALWAYS count one less day and then say "XX days and a wake up until you're home!" and that way it just seems/feels a little closer and not so hard to bear. I do a countdown on the calendar on my wall, on the online calendar, and everywhere that I can see, so that I am constantly and continuously reminded of two things: 1) it's not that far off, and 2) I can do this. ["For the man I love, I can wait ANY amount of time! 57 days? No problem...I got this."] Also doing a countdown makes him always on your mind and seem closer.

The next thing I do is that I write to him every single day. I write about all the dumb, stupid, day-to-day stuff that happens...not necessarily "I got up and then I brushed my teeth..." but that silly stuff you'd share if they were there, like "Oh my God, honey I have to tell you about the funny thing that happened today with the toothpaste! We have that Colgate, right? And it is just awful stuff--I grabbed the old style mint on accident and it tastes like putty! Anyway, so I'm trying to use up the tube and I thought I'd paste all the way along my toothbrush (instead of just that little pea size I usually do), and OH MY GOSH, I squeezed too hard and it flew EVERYWHERE! It was a like a toothpaste explosion and now I have have nuclear toothpaste fallout all over the bathroom! Then I went to try to clean it and I thought "I'm gonna need a toothbrush to get that paste out of the tiles" and I about died laughing at using a toothbrush to get toothpaste off the floor! Good heavens, life here in the states just isn't the same without you here to laugh at my goofs."

Now, sometimes they can get teased if the mail comes and they get 14 letters (you know--one for every day since the last mail call), sooo...if that's the case you don't want to make his life harder. Just send one bigger envelope with 14 one-page letters so he doesn't get grilled by the other guys. But my own personal suggestion? Make him the envy of all the other guys. Make him the one who gets the love letters every soldier wants to get from home. Let him KNOW you miss him and love him-and-only-him. Right? If you are doing that every day and focusing on making him the envy of all the other guys (who's GFs and wives aren't even CLOSE to being as devoted as you are), then guess what? Your mind is on him and not on being lonely or on any other man. ;)

Regarding your OM--here's my recommendation: utterly and completely in every possible way go no contact with him right now...today. I mean, delete him from every possible social media, from email, from contact lists...everywhere. If you have to, delete the social media altogether! When I had my EA, I took some time afterward and blocked him on email, deleted the chat we had used to chat (like...deleted the whole program and didn't use it at all), deleted my account on FB, and purposefully pointed my computer screen at my Dear Hubby so he could see every single thing I did on the computer. I was only on for work purposes, and otherwise I turned it off. Everyone who was a friend or acquaintance of the OM and I as a couple, I also blocked and deleted. I utterly deleted the game altogether and no longer played it. And thus, by every means possible including hearing about him from other people ("friends" in game, or photos on FB...) I went no contact.

The first week or two will be the hardest, as you will crave the uplifting "zing" you felt when you might see him in the game or hear from him...and the honest truth is that you are just going to have to gut it out. It's somewhat like going cold turkey--but just know it's coming and push on through. If you are tempted to contact, put it off for 15 minutes and then 15 minutes more and then 15 more minutes...until you can go an hour at a time, then a couple hours, then a day, a week, a month and so on. It will be hardest at first, but if you stick with it, he will gradually diminish from your thoughts. BUT don't just diminish him! While you are diminishing the thoughts of the OM, simultaneously increase thoughts of your hubby! When your mind wanders to OM ... take a moment right then to think

STOP!!

And then replace that thought with one good thought of your hubs. Like, if your mind wanders to "I wonder what OM is doing right now?" Think to yourself "STOP!! I don't want to think of him. I want to think of the man I'm married to. Okay...I wonder what hubby is doing right now. I wonder if he's tired, or sleeping, or thinking of me? Let's see...what time of day is it over there? (pull out a time converter app) 2pm here...8am over there... Oh he's been away for 4 hours already! I wonder if he got coffee?" etc.

See how you don't just stop one thought but start another? AND don't just think of being apart, but rather, think of positive things or things you might share or things you LIKE about your hubs. Replace negative thoughts of hubby (right now, hubs=feeling lonely) with POSITIVE thoughts of hubby (hubs=joking over coffee.... or hubs=kissing my nose). Get it?
 

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I told him I had to leave, it seemed like the right thing to do and he seemed to understand but definitely wasn’t agonizing over it the way I was. I guess people can compartmentalize it and carry on an affair without it affecting them.
I think that some people are just better able at identifying fantasy versus reality. He wasn't agonizing over your disappearance because you're really nothing more than words on a screen to him and he can find that anywhere on the internet. It's also extremely likely you're not the only one this guy is chatting with online.

Why on earth you'd attach any kind of value to something this fleeting is a mystery.

I'm with MattMatt - get professional help and get off that website.
 
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