Andrew G Marshall

Author & Marital Therapist

Ask Andrew – My wife won’t admit she is having an affair with her ex

September 24th, 2011 by Andrew Marshall in Ask Andrew

My wife has been having an affair with her ex boyfriend since last 3 years without my knowledge even though we have been married for 12 years.

I have caught their affair but they are not admitting its an affair. They are claiming we are just friends. However I have the proofs that shows its an affair.

I have given them hints of the proof and request my wife to stop. However, she still continues to make phone calls, and chatting on the network during my absence. She try to show me that she has stopped the affair by being good to me but there are proof it is still going on.

Please advice what is the next step should I take.

Andrew writes:

If you have not read ‘How can I ever trust you again?’ I would order it immediately as it has lots of strategies for getting someone to volunteer information – and that’s always the best option, as it is the first step to rebuilding trust.

Next I would ask yourself, ‘why can’t she tell me the truth?’ Is she frightened of your reaction? Does she worry that you will be angry or full or revenge (and therefore trying to protect her boyfriend)? With a better insight into what it is about your behaviour that’s making it harder to be honest, I would try the second approach.

Explain your feelings about the ‘friendship’ and what upsets you about it. Discuss the impact on your marriage and whether it can continue with him in the background. All the time being ready to listen to her opinions without getting angry or pushing for confirmation of an affair – as this will make her clam up.

If all this does not work, I would calmly lay out all evidence and let her comment. I don’t think hints work. Once she has finished blustering, crying or being angry, probably a few days later, I would ask her opinions on where you do from here. Can she stop contact? Does she want to work on your relationship? Once again, I would give her a week or so to think this through.

If she does want to save your marriage, discuss how she could end this friendship and keep it ended – because she will have plenty of temptation from the other man who will probably bombard her with texts etc.

Return to HCIETYA and start thinking about why your relationship has been vulnerable to this man’s intervention for three years. At the moment, you’ll think it’s because of her ‘feelings’ for the other man but I suspect it is more about something that is problematic in your relationship and she’s been self-medicating with his attention. Find the source of your relationships problems and he will be history for the 2nd time.