When I looked into the statistics of divorce what was interesting is that second marriages had a far higher divorce rate than first marriages.
When I dug deeper I discovered that marriages created from an affair were the least likely to be successful.
The success rate was just 5%.
So why would this be the case?
As you go through this post you see the transition problems affair couples are faced with when they choose to marry, plus you”ll find a story of a gentleman’s secret affair call with me – it’s quite shocking how lost he was.
I’ve shared with you the call we had below.
So why don’t affairs marriages last and what makes their success far worse than second marriages?
The problem for affair couples is compounded by challenges they won’t naturally see because they become overwhelmed by feelings that distort what’s really happening.
Affairs create levels of illusion(s) because they are full of excitement and mystery in most cases they are about doing what they shouldn’t, it’s illicit, it’s intense, it’s passionate and full of excitement.
Affairs are not about responsibility, it’s about freedom and connection to themselves in a very different way.
For some, affairs allow them to be someone else, for others affairs allow individuals to bring out a deeper level of sexuality.
Many people worry that if their true sexual needs are discovered by their spouse they won’t be loved so it’s safer to have an affair.
Every affair has its own unique drivers, but very few are built on solid foundations.
Affairs bring a powerful energy that a struggling marriage will struggle to compete with.
Once the person has crossed the line consequences in the moment will be unimportant.
There is a lot of energy and powerful chemicals at play that help people make irrational decisions that any sane person would reject in a heartbeat.
So how will affair partners respond to Groundhog Day
So what do you think will happen when the affair couple starts living together married and normal life sets in?
What happens when their connection is no longer all-consuming and a secret?
What happens when they experience NORMAL LIFE?
How will they keep that intensity alive, it’s no longer naughty or intense, it’s now about responsibility and building a new type of connection, it’s about building real trust with real foundations and creating lasting love.
Affairs are electric and take little effort to feel that way. Relationships that are successful are a daily decision to love and care for someone and that takes effort it’s not automatic.
Affair energy can confuse lust with love and drive people to feel they have found their true love and this can drive them to make terrible decisions.
This Gentleman called me for help.
I’ll never forget this conversation.
He told me he had to whisper because his wife was down stairs.
He told me 4 years ago he divorced his wife (the one downstairs) because he had an affair.
He left his wife (the one downstairs) for the affair partner.
He said the divorce cost him a small fortune, but it was worth it because he was getting married to the affair partner, they passionately loved each other it was great.
But for some reason, his second marriage to the affair partner didn’t work out in fact it lasted just two years.
So at great expense he ended up divorcing her too.
So now he finds himself back in the original marital home with his first wife who thinks everything is now ok.
So I asked him “what help do you require from me?”
In a loud whisper he said:
“WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING!!!”
So what did this man not know – I hope you are hearing this true story as a metaphor for many people who think they know best, until they see too late they don’t.
He was so swept up in the affair that was so much more fun than the marriage that had become boring.
He didn’t learn why the first marriage was failing and his part in that failure.
He also didn’t learn what he and his first wife were capable of creating with the right help.
He felt all he needed to know was he was unhappy and an affair changed that, so clearly the affair was his solution.
He didn’t get to know his affair partner in the context of normal living, plus he brought many old problems from his first marriage to the affair partner.
The affair partner started to become insecure, because she was now vulnerable to him going back to his wife and kids.
There is an irony for affair couples that marry and that’s there is a proven track record that their partner has had an affair and they know their secrets.
So now normal life is giving him a sharp slap in the face and he’s becoming unhappy with the affair partner he married.
He’s unhappy, with no fun, no passion just like his first marriage just more shouting at least his first wife wasn’t a shouter.
Sex with the affair partner was better, but that stopped happening.
He couldn’t cope with the affair partners’ rages and insecurities so he left and she filed for divorce, even more expense.
The real problem
People that have affairs are using the emotions attached to the affair as a foundation for their future success and so are unaware they are building their new marriage on quicksand.
At 5% success rates what sane person would risk so much?
I know affairs will never stop, but understanding how to protect a relationship either from an affair, or how to protect it after one is a critical life skill to gain.
This is Affair week
Tuesday: What counts as cheating?
Wednesday: Why affairs that end in marriage rarely work
Thursday: Why do people have affairs?
Friday: Affair addiction