The affair site
With Tiger Woods back in the game after his "bad decisions" admission on ESPN, I couldn't help but recall George (not his real name), who had consulted me about how to deal with his new affair.
Visions of Woods, Jessie James, Mark Sanford, John Edwards, and others came to mind, along with the similar stories of countless patients over the years.
They spoke on the phone frequently and lingered around after working on the project.
Soon they realized that a very intimate and emotionally close bond had developed.
In this affair one party is available but the other isn't.
The available partner believes that the other really will leave his or her spouse, given enough time and patience. " But that takes two equally available and committed people.
And there's a risk that what they're not finding in their primary relationship will become increasingly disruptive to it. Bill thought this was fail-safe because no one would suspect.
Eventually, she realized that beneath her anger was a desire for a man who would really recognize her, who could "see" her, as her father never did.Neither Bill nor Tina, his sister-in-law, looked seriously at the issues in their respective marriages or inter-locked families; or even how dangerous it was.Postscript: One of their spouses eventually discovered the incriminating e-mails, and the family affair quickly turned into a family nightmare. Humans are experts at creating illusions for ourselves.It definitely felt like much more than just a friendship. Linda, who was my patient, said that neither of them wanted to disrupt or leave their primary relationship, or "mess it up." So, they chose to keep it platonic.That level of intimacy and intensity makes it an affair of the mind, if not the body; it's more than just a friendship.But before that awakening occurred, she suffered, and she still had to deal with the reality of her marriage and how to heal her own trauma. Can you call it an affair if the "lovers" don't have sex? They became very close, working together on a volunteer project.Paul was married, and Linda was divorced but living with a boyfriend.People make their choices, but I think a non-judgmental description of these six kinds of affairs (but with a tinge of humor) can help people deal with them with greater awareness and responsibility. John and Kim met through work and felt a strong physical attraction. The lust affair is often short-lived, and passion can slide downhill pretty fast as the excitement declines or under-riding emotional issues surface again.It can also fade if the lovers discover that there wasn't much connecting them beyond sex.But cultural attitudes have clearly shifted towards acceptance of affairs.They're seen as a lifestyle choice; an option for men and women yearning for excitement or intimacy that's lacking or has dulled during a marriage.