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I am having an affair with my best friend's husband

Posted by Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 20 November 2014
Dear Patricia Marie,
 
I have done something unforgivable and I feel so bad about it. I am having an affair with my best friend's husband.
 
It started in April and I want to finish it, but he is my soul mate. He says he wants to spend the rest of his life with me, but I can't stand the worry of my friend finding out. I know she would be devastated if she knew, but I just cant help myself.  I have been on my own for a year or so, and the three of sometimes go out together.  I knew he was keen on me, but it was me who instigated the affair.
 
I love him so very much. Should I just carry on seeing him and act like nothing is happening, or should I tell my friend and ruin our friendship?

Patricia Marie says...

Women do tend to believe they are in love when they have an affair.  Men can be more opportunistic, but women need to feel more emotionally engaged - and the effect can be devastating.

You say this man is your soul mate, but the reality is what sort of man has an affair with his wife's best friend? If he means what he says about wanting to spend the rest of his life with you, why have you not run off into the sunset together?

Many mistresses wait forever for their lovers to leave their wives, and when forever never comes, they are left heartbroken. How do you know your not just a bit of escapism for him - just a bit of fun?  It may not be the first time he's had an affair and promised his mistress the world.

If your friend did find out about the affair, there's every chance your lover would go running back to his wife, and you'd be left with nothing. I urge you to find the strength to end this relationship before this situation becomes destructive. Consider shifting your energy into finding your very own man, rather than waste your time on somebody else's. We can't help who we fall in love with, but everyone is worth more than being someone's mistress.

However, if you two are genuinely in love, then he should do the decent thing and tell his wife, who deserves to know her husband has cheated on her and her best friend has betrayed her.

You need to be sure he's worth it because you are set to lose your best friend forever.



Have a dilemma? Please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk  Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.



In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows

How do I get my wife back?

Posted by Patricia_Marie
Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 11 September 2014
Dear Patricia Marie,

I am writing as I need some advice on a terrible decision I think I have made. I am a 45 year old man, I had a lovely life, an excellent job, comfortable home and three adorable children along with a doting wife. I met a younger lady and after some time I left everything for her. Six months on, the excitement of being with somebody new has worn off and the grass is definitely not greener on the other side. I have just ended the relationship with my new girlfriend and would do anything to have my old life back, but am so ashamed and embarrassed of what I have put my family through. My wife refuses to answer my calls, and ignores my texts. Her mother drops the children to me when they come to stay, so I don't even get to see her. My sister-in-law contacted me recently to tell me my wife still loves me, but at the same time despises me for what I have done to her and our children.

With your professional guidance I am hoping that I can fix this and my family. Any advice would be highly appreciated.

Patricia Marie says...

The decision to leave your wife and children for another woman would almost certainly have had a huge effect on your family, and you cannot expect everything to fall back into place just because things haven't worked out for you. Wanting your wife to conform to your wishes so soon after the hurt you have caused her would be unreasonable.

The commendable thing is that you have not only seen your errors, but have understood the consequences of your actions. However, you are going to have to do a lot of hard work to convince your wife. I would suggest you initially write her a letter of which she would be able to digest in her own time. Explain that you do not want to put any pressure on her at all, but would love to meet up to tell her in person how very sorry you are for the hurt you have caused.  You've learned a hard lesson, and hopefully you can give some consolation to your wife by accepting and owning your share of the blame, and most importantly, whatever the outcome, be able to continue a positive relationship with your children.

A huge concern and something you need to ask yourself is: why did you feel the need to walk away in the first place?  Clearly something wasn't right between you and your wife and this needs to be addressed before any thoughts of a reconciliation, otherwise, you could end up in the same situation as before. Perhaps before any life-changing decisions are made, you could both benefit from attending Relate (relate.org.uk) as having professional help would enable you to explore any issues that contributed to the breakdown of your relationship. And do remember, sometimes we search long and hard for something that we fail to realise we already have.


Have a dilemma? Please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk  Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.

In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows

My husband is insensitive

Posted by Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 28 August 2014
Dear Patricia Marie

My husband spent his early 20s working away in the states doing all kinds of jobs, and he still describes that period as the best days of his life. I find that so insulting since he's now married to me and we have two lovely children. Recently we were at a party when he started bragging about his US years and I just lost it. How do I make him understand how insensitive he's being. He also tells our friends at any given opportunity that he has always popular with the women and hasn't lost his charm. How dare he make such comments. I do love him, but am beginning to think he's not the man I married which is causing me to resent him. I do not think he deserves me or our beautiful children. My friends think he is a joke which is very embarrassing for me. Please can you offer me some advice.

Patricia Marie says...

A relationship shouldn't be a battle to see who has had the best experiences, and it can be difficult to live with someone who gives the impression they have seen and done it all.  Sometimes for whatever reason when things aren't going right, people look back on the past with rose tinted-spectacles.  The need for your husband to convince you that others think so highly of him, is a sign of insecurity, and by shifting it and projecting it to you, he is reassuring himself. He is covering up his lack of confidence by displaying unacceptable behaviour, typical of the sort of person who values themselves so little they're always afraid there not loved. The only way to work through such anxiety is to work on self-esteem. Counselling will help, but first, he needs to admit he has a problem which may not be easy.

You need to have a proper chat, make it clear that you're not a jealous person but his trips down memory lane are wearing you down. How would he like it if you were constantly reminiscing about the fun times you shared with your friends? Discuss what you can both do to enhance your relationship. Whilst working hard to bring up a young family you can sometimes lose sight of each others needs as a couple. Make some special time for each other, so you can both feel loved and appreciated. Hopefully your husband will begin to see he cannot continue to act in this way, as he could risk losing the life he has now. Memories are precious but the past cannot be allowed to intrude on the present.

Have a dilemma? Please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk  Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.


In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows

My family don't care that I'm depressed

Posted by Patricia_Marie
Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 31 July 2014
Dear Patricia Marie,

My husband has always been sympathetic of the depression I have struggled with for years, but my sister and brother have been so unhelpful and my mother positively cruel. It came to a head last week when she said I was just like my dad, who died 30 years ago when I was 10.

I always thought he'd had an accident, but from what she'd said, he'd killed himself and she thinks I'm bound to do the same and would be stupid if I did.

Patricia Marie says...

Depression can be so draining. It's not just about sadness, but about feeling helpless, isolated and having little, if any, energy. It can run in families, but whether that's genetic or because of shared experiences, experts can't be sure.

Your father's death and your family's lack of support may be linked to you feeling as bad as you do. Friends and family support is crucial for the recovery and well being of those suffering with the brutal illness of depression - indeed, lack of support and feelings of loneliness can make the sufferer more vulnerable.

It seems to me that your mother's anger and lack of understanding demonstrates she hasn't fully been able to come to terms with the death of your father. It may not be easy, but you could try suggesting she gets some professional help, which would assist her in understanding depression better so as she can relate to your needs.

If your father did kill himself that doesn't mean you will follow suit, nor that suicidal thoughts are stupid (certainly, they aren't uncommon in depression). What is a lot more silly and annoying is your family's unhelpful behaviour.

Contact mental health charity mind (0300 123 3393; mind.org.uk) for its excellent information and help in finding good support. They can give you details of their group therapy sessions, where meeting other fellow sufferers may prove helpful to you in feeling understood.


Have a dilemma? Please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk  Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.


In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows

My husband and our daughter aren't speaking

Posted by Patricia_Marie
Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 03 July 2014
Dear Patricia Marie,

My husband and our daughter aren't speaking. The problem was that her boyfriend from university came to stay in the new year, and my husband caught him coming out of the bedroom. There was a terrible row and they left early and now she said she's not coming to see us in the summer. My husband feels he was right to 'uphold standards'- I say he's being unreasonable. What do you think?

Patricia Marie says...

It's hard for dads to accept their little girls have grown up and now love someone other than them, so I can sympathise with him. Most parents at some time have to face this dilemma and the only way to resolve this is for both parties to communicate in a mature way and be able to compromise.

You might have said 'not under our roof' and that would have been acceptable. But you then should have listened to their side of the argument - points such as they're over 18, have a physical relationship and may even live together at university. I would have recognised this and offered them the option of a shared room, as by offering them separate beds you won't feel like you are running a love hotel and not forcing them to sneak about either. However way you view the behaviour of the boyfriend, I feel sure he would rather not be having to hide away.

At this moment they have now taken another option  - not to visit a Victorian father who considers his daughter a fallen woman and her boyfriend dishonourable. However difficult the situation seems at this moment, negotiations and mutual apologies might resolve this. I do hope so.


Have a dilemma? Please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk  Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.


In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows

It's the dog or him

Posted by Patricia_Marie
Patricia_Marie
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on Friday, 21 February 2014
Dear Patricia Marie,

After the heartbreak of many failed attempts at IVF, my husband and I are having to come to terms with being unable to have children. However, in December we made a decision to get a dog and have fallen in love with him. George, our Bichon Frise, has enhanced our lives in a way I had never thought possible. The problem is, I never want to leave him, he is my life, I adore him and cannot trust anyone to look after, him which is causing problems between me and my husband. I do not want to socialise anymore, prefering to be with George. We had previously booked a holiday for July this year, I have told my husband to cancel it. He is furious and has now said its him or the dog. What do I do?

Patricia Marie says...

It is vital you and your husband establish some boundaries and limitations. Yes, do enjoy your dog, he is helping to fill a void in your life, however, he is not leader of the pack. You and your husband have a relationship to safeguard and nurture, which you cannot allow your dog to dominate. You have both come through a painful time together, and it would be unfair to let your dog come between the bond you clearly share with your husband, and would like you to consider his point of view.

Your dog has become a substitute child, and you are not allowing him to be what he is, a delightful pet, and for all your sakes needs to be treated like one, so you and your husband can get to enjoy him without further resentment. You both deserve the forthcoming holiday, and there are many reliable dog sitters about, who you could share your anxieties with, and perhaps come up with a plan to make the separation easier to cope with.

The emotional pain of failed IVF treatment can cause much anxiety, and feel you could benefit from some counselling, which would help you come to terms with the fear of loss and separation. The British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy have a directory where you can find a qualified registered therapist in your area. www.bacp.co.uk

Got a dilemma, please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk
Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.

In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows

Should I leave my husband?

Posted by Patricia_Marie
Patricia_Marie
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on Friday, 15 November 2013
Dear Patricia Marie,

I have been married to a lovely man (who I have known for over 15 years) for over 3 years, and together for 6 years before that, although I was away at university for 3 years, during which time he stayed loyal vowing to wait for me to complete my studies, which he did.

The year after I returned from uni we bought a house together. Life was wonderful. We both had good jobs, and financially we were comfortable. We got married, had lovely holidays, and a great social life.

Recently I had to take on more hours at work, including night shifts, which meant we didn't see much of each other. I employed a male member of staff to ease my workload, and shortly after he shocked me by dumping his girlfriend and stating he had feelings for me.

I was spending a lot of time with him, more so than my husband, and my feelings for him have grown stronger, and we have shared kisses, and recently spent the night together when I said I was at work. His ex-girlfriend has started phoning our house, leaving messages asking when I'm going to tell my husband what's going on.

I've fallen in love with my work colleague, but not sure he's worth leaving my husband for, even though my life with him has become dull and boring. What should I do?

Patricia Marie says...

Your marriage was good when you were financially secure, enjoying holidays and having a good social life. You are now working long unsociable hours, spending less time with your husband, maintaining life with him is dull and boring.

A successful marriage is not just about sharing the good times, but dealing with the difficulties life brings and bonding from such experiences.

Rather than deal with the problems in your relationship, it was easier for you to fall into the arms of another man who could offer you some escapism.

You say you love this man. I would like you to consider your perception of love. Is it someone who gives you the excitement you crave, or the one who shows loyalty and commitment your husband displays, who you describe as being a "lovely man" and not sure the other man is worth leaving him for.

I believe you may have found your own answer. If you feel you do want a chance to save your marriage, it would be really helpful to spend some quality time with your husband, work on the relationship together and decide how you can make things better between you.



Got a dilemma, please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk
Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.


In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows
Telephone number: 020 7467 8389


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