Pursued--but now what?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-07-2012
Pursued--but now what?
Fri, 03-01-2013 - 3:50pm

Hi.  New to this board in this decade-10 years ago I was on here all the time.  I'm wordy so I'll try to condense as to not make it a novel.  I married for the 2nd time in 2003 as soon as my D was final, but it was not a perfect union and things became rocky quickly.  I had two different EA with my xAP during a 6 yr period because I was not happy.  H found out about both times which of course caused escalated arguments, verbally abusive episodes and I begged him to just let me go.  He wouldn't..he knew I wasn't physically attracted to him and felt I had made a mistake in marrying him, but he didn't care because he was VERY co-dependent.  Anyway, I finally agreed to really try on the marriage, put MY feelings aside and to make things work   I went total NC and eventually got over xAP.  Things were fine for about 1-2 years--we each got into our own activities and I had lots of freedom AND lots of time alone. We were co-existing in our house just fine and all our friends felt we were the perfect couple.

Last spring, TOTALLY out of the blue, one of my male co-workers started talking to me on IM.  I had done some work with him on several projects but I never gave him much thought.  At first he was just flirting, so I flirted back (I'm a big flirt) but made it perfectly clear I was happily married.  Not really sure how that got misconstrued, but the guy --who by the way had been married for 26 years and swore he never had an A--started ACTIVELY pursuing me.  I flat out told hiim I wasn't interested, YELLED at him in chat, told him to his face, but he kept insisting I was interested in him.  I left my first M of 19 yrs after my A was discovered by the AP's W (that marriage was abusive and I had been unhappy for a long time as well).   I was not about to put myself in the same situation and told him so!  I told him if he wasn't happy, he needed to end his M and THEN look for someone to be with, not come after me.  Well, I'm not sure if it was just sheer weakness, my underlying unhappiness with my M, my lack of chemistry and attraction to my H or what, but I would play the game of flirting, sending sexy photos of myself and then telling him I would never fool around because I was married.  I would yo-yo almost on an hourly basis.  I honestly don't even know why he kept trying...other than he was very interested in me.  I soon started seeing him in a different light and realized he was SO different than the persona he portrayed in a work atmosphere.  He was much more intelligent, passionate and had a genuine deep caring side to him.  I also found out we had a lot more in common than I thought.  I was definitely intrigued and found myself starting to fall for him.  Each time I would have doubts or start feeling guilty, he would try to ease my fears and assured me things would work out and we'd be together.

We started meeting outside of work but didn't have sex.  I didn't want to totally cheat on my H, although what we were doing was still cheating.  His W found out rather quickly that something was going on from looking at phone records, then called my H.  It was a GIANT mess of course!!  The fact we worked together KILLED both our spouses.  His plan that we would leave our spouses to be with each other evaporated when he realized HE couldn't walk out on his kids.  That made me half-heartedly try to reconcile with my H...and I was trying my hardest NOT to talk to AP because I was so hurt and felt so deceived and so STUPID because I fell for the same thing I had done ten years before!  We might have gone 1 week with NC, but then he emailed me  and we found ourselves back to talking on a daily basis.  We did NOT meet outside of work though.  At home, my H and I fought constantly until I finally moved out for a short time just to get away from him.   I tried moving back for 3 weeks, but he found out I was still talking to my AP and that just made things unbearable.   I left for good in October and we filed for divorce.  I do NOT regret that decision other than I caused him undue pain.

MM and I are in a full out A now... sex with each other is mind blowing!  Neither of us has EVER had experiences like this before.  We do wonder if it's just the fact that it IS an A that its so good (?) There is so much chemistry between us...I didn't have an 1/8th of that attraction with my H.  I left my M because I couldn't continue the lies.  He refuses to leave his until his youngest graduates in 2 more years. He says he can't do it to his kids.  He claims he loves me more than his W and sees me as often as he can. He has been caught two or THREE different times with various small things that involve me.  He even left one night after a huge blow out over me and we stayed in a hotel together.  I thought that his M was over.  HE thought that was too, but he returned home the next night and his W never brought it up again!!  His W does NOT know it's a complete A...he tells me he has told her we are just friends and co-workers.  

Why I'm writing this is because I've heard several times, "I came after you...I pursued you because I wanted you and wanted you to fall in love with me. Now you have and the timing is just WRONG!"   He has told me again and again that if his kid was out of school already, he would not hesitate to leave.  I get a bit angry when he says this because I was minding my own business AND felt I WAS happily married until he started messing with me.  Yes, it takes two and all that, but he totally had a goal in mind, which he has now achieved at my expense.  He IS very goal oriented and when he sees something he wants (or apparently someone -- as in me), he goes after it until he gets it. 

I love him though..and don't want to let him go.  I know I deserve better and HE knows I deserve better, but we're so intertwined..not to mention co-workers, neither of us can pull the plug.  My one very good friend tells me I need to dump him...especially now that I'm single and almost divorced.  She wants me to find someone I'm compatible with and get into a healthy relationship.  Two other good friends accept the situation for what it is and say if I'm happy, to go for it. I am happy when he's with me...but when he's with his family or the weekend comes and I get no communcation...I'm not so happy!  I used to have a very social life with my H.  Now I rarely go out for fear of "putting myself out there" and potentially meeting someone I could be interested in.

Is anyone else in this same situation?  I end up having some very bad days every 3 weeks or so cause I get jealous of his attention and I need to stop doing that!  He will tell me things aren't good at home, but I see signs that they aren't all that bad... They are still in the same bedroom and still having sex as far as I know, although I'm sure not as much as they had before.  I don't ask because I don't want to know...    He says he hates that he has become a liar, but he loves me too much to let me go.  There is no way I can go TWO MORE YEARS on this merry-go-round.   He has even stated he wished his W would find out so he would be forced to make a decision OR he has said that maybe I should dump him and see if it forces his hand.  I'm not sure I want to take that risk!  It makes him seem like a big fat coward if you ask me!!  

Opinions or thoughts appreciated and thanks for reading... hope I made sense. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Sat, 03-02-2013 - 6:31pm

Ugh, the guy is a coward.  So he wants his DW to find out so that she'll divorce him so he won't have to be the bad guy?  Does he think his child will be happy with him then, finding out that he had an affair?  Does he really think that his child will be any happier that the parents are getting divorced when he is 18 compared to 16?  I think parents are naive when they think if they stay til the kids go to college everything will be easy--it's still going to be upsetting to the kids that their parents are getting divorced, no matter how old they are, even if they are grown & married themselves, unless it was so obvious that the parents' marriage was so bad--like if they were fighting all the time, maybe the kids would be relieved.

I was just with a friend today who had an affair w/ a MM--she was divorced already.  They 2 families had been friends for years but then the guy admitted he had feelings for her.  It wasn't all about the sex--sometimes they couldn't get together--but they really seemed compatible.  He was very unhappy w/ the DW, which my friend actually knew cause she had seen the dynamics--they would have arguments in front of other people and she thinks the DW probably has some kind of mental illness.  Well it went on for years, he never left the DW even after all the kids were out of the house (of course he never really promised that he would leave, my friend was just hoping).  Now my friend regrets how she spent so much time waiting for him and has never really gone on dates--this started back 10 yrs ago.  She just wasted so much time when she could have gone out & met someone else.  Now the older we get it's just so much harder to meet a man.  So when I heard you say that you don't want to go out on weekends cause you're afraid to meet someone--well that's exactly what you should be doing.  Why should this guy keep you on a string?  He told you he won't leave his DW for at least 2 yrs (and who knows if he'll even do it then?)  So why should you be sitting home on weekends bored while he is at least going out & doing family things--and maybe he's really having fun w/ his DW & kids?  You don't know what is going on because you only know what he tells you.  You should be going out & you should be looking for a man who is available if you want a relationship.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-07-2012
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 10:44am

Thank you.  I have tried telling him that if his kids find out, it will be MUCH harder on him..not to mention, they will never accept me.  He seems to be a bit naive to think otherwise.  

Also, oddly enough he doesn't want me dating ANYONE.  He has told me that if I feel inclined as to even accept a coffee date with someone, I need to be upfront and let him know so he can back off.  I told him that seemed rather hypocritical being that he insisted he STAY MARRIED!  He also told me that if I decided to cut him loose and date, when he DID leave (be it in 6 months, 2 years or whatever), he was coming back after me.  I haven't said anything, but I thought to myself, REALLY???  REALLY?  I already broke up my marriage because of you...and now that I'd be dating someone (i.e. in a healthy relationship), you'd risk my chance at happiness just because you couldn't pull the plug on your own marriage?  That just doesn't seem fair, you know?  

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-03-2009
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 1:02pm

> My one very good friend tells me I need to dump him..<<

Your one very good friend is very RIGHT.

Change, in any shape of form, is very hard to get started, to do. 

But the rewards are surely worth it.

Look at what you shared with him as a precious memory to be cherished.

But don't let that memory hinder a wonderful life that you could build for yourself in the near future.

That's the biggest disservice you can do to what you and he shared.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-03-2009
Tue, 03-05-2013 - 11:31am

I've read your post again. Some further thoughts came to mind.  The following are my personal thoughts, not claiming they are facts or anything.

He wanted an emotional and physical diversion when he met you. Maybe he never realized it would come to this. Maybe he did.  Either way, he loved to chase you, and he loved to conquer you. Now that he has you, there is not much else he can do. But, to keep you, he has to create a scenario for you and for himself. He may believe all the things he says about a future for the two of you, he may not. Who knows.

I agree with you that he's goal oriented. He accomplished what he set out to do, and that was to get a mistress.  Now, he's doing his best to keep things in some kind of an unstable balance.

Throughout this R, neither you nor he was on any stable emotional standing, due to drama on both sides. You were not in any position to make sound judgements related to any kind of a healthy R. So, this is naturally where you end up at.

It's a good, fun, exhilirating experience, minus the hurt caused.

But, I think it's taken its toll on both of you, and it's best that YOU stop it. He won't. It's too good of an emotional and physical escape for him to even think about stopping it.

But, for you, with your life ahead of you, you have no reason but to stop it.

Otherwise, the next few years will be filled with even more drama, heartbreak, and more.

I'd like to think you deserve better.

I'd like to think you'd want to make the best of where you are in life and not to squander away years of your life on intense yet meaningless drama.

At the end, you are the only one who can make the better call for yourself.


iVillage Member
Registered: 09-12-2005
Tue, 03-05-2013 - 1:52pm

Grrrrr, I lost everything I wrote !

Your story sounds a lot like mine. He pursued me, he was the one to tell me that he loved me, he was the one to tell me to wait for him, while the W, who at that time recently arrived to Canada, could adapt. At the end of this month, it will be a year that his W is here (both of them are from Cuba initially) and it's still the same. He still doesn't know when he wants to break up, he would feel bad if she felt unhappy in Canada because she came for him, blablabla. She works, has friends, learns who to drive, but apparently it's not enough.

He still loves me, he's always present (by text or email if not in person), he shows that he cares about my son, he even started learning my mother tongue (even if we communicate in English and it's not necessary whatsoever) and he's a very busy man.

He would also get jealous and I completely stopped doing anything related to dating. And I see that it was a big mistake, because I got too concentrated on him and that's why I couldn't just enjoy the nice moments together and would get anxious from time to time. Yes, we had great moments together, but partially it was due to me making efforts, to forget about resentment, to be sexy, to create a sensual atmosphere, to solve problems, etc. And if I could do it for him, I could do it even better for a guy with whom I don't have restricted time to spend with. Me and my AP only had 1 or max 2 hours in the afternoon during the week. Only so much you can do there.

Yet, everytime I would ask him what's going on, he would tell me that nothing new and how I'm annoying him, that there's no point because I know that he loves me and I should just wait, etc. etc. At some point, I stopped being scared of losing him, because being in a relationship like that was not what I wanted. I accepted temporarily, but things had to change for me to continue.

 And I just broke up with him.

I used to think he was the man of my life, now I see that I was stupid. There are plenty of interesting men out of there who would be happy to have a woman like me. And that's what you should think about yourself. And they can stay with their wives all they want and be happy. That's what I wished my AP.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-03-2009
Tue, 03-05-2013 - 3:20pm


Good for you!  I am very impressed!

But, don't be so harsh on yourself. I don't think you were stupid.  You decided with the best information you had at the time and listened to your heart more. But, you also needed time so that you can see things develop to where it became crystal clear to you what lay ahead for you in a better future.

Don't regret what you shared with him. The life experience is worth it, I think. Now, like you said, you can move on with the knowledge of the past, to make better decisions in the future for yourself.

How wonderful!

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-12-2005
Tue, 03-05-2013 - 4:18pm

Thanks for the nice words.

I really don't regret being with him. Not only could I discover many things about myself but also about life. All this insecurity that I felt in our relationship and the curiosity about affairs pushed me to research and I think I know how to make my future relationship affair proof LOL ! I'm definetely a much better person and will be a much better partner after this experience. Not to mention, a much sexier woman ;).

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-03-2009
Tue, 03-05-2013 - 4:27pm

You could skip the part about the A and just post the rest on your next online dating profile! :)

Kidding aside, because of the limits we are stretched to in an A, we do acquire a much better sense of ourselves at the end of an A.  No question about it!

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-07-2012
Wed, 03-06-2013 - 9:48am

Sireanita-I was in the middle of responding to YOUR post yesterday, when MM called me...so I closed out the window and didn't finish.  I wanted to know your story since I was new to the boards, so thank you for posting to me!  I thought it sounded a little similar to my situation, only minus a child.

I am sorry you broke up, but it sounds like you are most definitely doing the right thing.  I was going to ask you if you thought you could stay strong and not contact him after time had passed and you started missing him.

I know MM has made the passing comment that maybe if I broke things off, he'd be forced to make a decision. As I said in my original post, I'm just too afraid to do that right now for fear he won't!  MM has given me a timeline of when he planned to leave, but that keeps getting pushed out... As Nevereasy has said, he seems to be dangling the carrot with future plans but HAS insisted that we will be together one day.  It just a matter if I want to wait it out (to have it potentially not work ANYWAY), or put a stop to it and get on with my life.

I definitely have Rship issues.  I am in counseling, but we haven't even scratched the surface of those much due to other more pressing things at hand.  I wasn't happy in my first M and had at least four 1 night flings and 1 full blown A.  I left after 18 yrs and 2 kids and moved right into being on my own and living the single life.  I HATED IT!!  I was so intent on finding my next husband (or someone to take care of me), I spent my free time on internet dating sites or running all over meeting potential matches.  My kids suffered from my lack of attention and I will ALWAYS regret doing that.  I so badly wished I would have just taken time to get to know ME and to enjoy being WITH myself!   I agreed to marry my 2nd H after 9 days of phone calls...yes, only NINE days!  We hadn't even met each other at that point.  Its a wonder it lasted nine years because we really were not that compatible in many aspects.   I don't regret leaving that M... but I do regret falling back into the pattern of the exit A. This time I wasn't even looking...that was what is so bizarre to me. At least I didn't think I was... It proves to me that I'm just really poor with monogamy and relationships in general OR I've just not met the right man for me yet.  Since I'm 51, I'm doubtful I ever will...  I'm so fearful if I would meet the right man, I'd still cheat on him because I don't trust in myself!  

Because MM does not want to share ME with anyone else, my non-dating and/or lack of wanting to is keeping me a lot more grounded this time on my own.  (I just moved into my own place 2 weeks ago...I had been staying with a friend, but had been separated since Oct).  It is giving me the chance to be on my own and self-sufficient without feeling the need to search for someone else.  I know its not healthy and I DO know I deserve better.  I just saw a Pin on Pinterest today that hit me in the gut.  "You accept the love you think you deserve".  Pretty much sums it up.   Frown

I think of not having anyone in the picture ... even one who only belongs to me part time and I get absolutely terrified at the thought.   Maybe I'll eventually get tired of playing the "game" and get up the nerve to say enough.  What makes it worse in my case is that we work together.  We can avoid each other  to some degree but its not a big place and we'd still run into each other or attend the same meetings.  If I have to look at him but can't be with him, I really don't know if I could do that.  Finding another job is not an option for either of us...