My lover is married to someone else. How do I convince yourself it’s over ― and what do I tell the married person I’ve been seeing?
Everyone always says don’t date a married person. It’s wrong. It ends in heartbreak. Let’s forget about the ethics for a second. How can I, as the affair partner disengage from an unhealthy relationship and move on with my life for good?
- A reader who wishes to remain anonymous asks
Answered by Evelyn Heffermehl, Marriage and Family Therapy, German Neuroscience Center
Ending a romantic relationship is very painful. You have likely developed an emotional/attachment bond with this person. To a large extent, this is like mourning the loss of a loved one. It takes time, and the loving support of dear ones.
It's obviously a tough task, to discuss this with people around you, people you may feel would be judgmental. I would encourage you to seek the help of a therapist if you feel this is too much for you to handle on your own. This will allow you to grieve and process things, learn lessons that need to be learned with the support and compassion.
Often, people have affairs because they are unable to get their connection needs met with their spouses. Hence, they turn away from their marriage and seek comfort elsewhere. This is a temporary band-aid though, as affairs are not comparable to long-term relationships, which involve through the day to day stuff of living together. Hence, the affair is often idealised as it is typically not confronted with the daily struggles that make up married life.
It is courageous of you to seek help and answers to your questions.
Wishing you courage and self compassion on your journey towards healing.
If you have questions that you would like answered by a mental health professional in the UAE, please write in to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, please let us know if you'd rather stay anonymous.
Disclaimer: This blog is a conversation and is not an alternative for treatment. The recommendations and suggestions offered by our panel of doctors are their own and Gulf News will not take any responsibility for the advice they provide.