How to Cope With Your Husband’s Emotional Affair

husband emotional affair

I honestly don’t know what prompted me to pick up my husband’s cell phone and look through his texts while he was in the shower.

It was about 4 years ago. He came home late at night after a “meeting with co-workers”and quickly ran into the shower.

I’m not the suspicious type, and I had no real reason to mistrust him. I always thought of his as a dependable, loyal and loving husband.

As I scrolled down his messages, I smiled to my self feeling relieved. Mundane work messages along with texts from me and some of his friends.

And then my stomach lurched.

I have found a few text messages from a female co-worker whom I never heard about, each of them ended with a string of kisses.

“We must stay in each other’s life”, read one of them. “I can’t wait to see you tomorrow”, read another.

My husband and best friend replied in the same manner.

I was shocked beyond belief. I literally felt the floor slipping from under my feet and I had to sit down because I was so dizzy.

This is how I found out about my husband’s emotional affair (and how I came about to writing this blog).

Dealing With the Unbelievable Hurt 

Like all emotional (or physical) cheaters, my husband denied his affair. But I was in rage and felt I had to find out more.

I was consumed with jealousy, anxiety, depression and anger – All at once. I felt incredibly deceived.

I started doing things I never dreamed I would do.

I snooped around everywhere. I looked at her Facebook profile (and found out she was only 22 and quite attractive), I accessed phone records and credit card bills.

When I gathered all the evidence I confronted him again.

This time he confessed he “has feelings for her”, but swore he never slept with her.

I suddenly felt old, tired and worthless. And betrayed beyond belief.

I accused him of destroying our marriage and our family.

Maybe they haven’t made love (I’ll never know for sure), but it is still a huge betrayal.

The next months felt like my whole life was paused. I spent every waking moment obsessing about the secret dinners, intimate texts and conversations and the late-night meetings.

I had no idea how to cope with my husband’s emotional affair. And I couldn’t get out of the vicious cycle of pain, anger and mistrust – Until I found this help (more on that below).

Why Did YOUR Husband Emotionally Cheat?

You’ve discovered personal emails. Too personal. Or a series of late night calls. Your husband has admitted it or hasn’t – It doesn’t matter. Your gut tells you the truth.

How did he meet this woman? Who is she? What does she look like? Did they sleep together? Did he plan to leave and our children for her?

You have to realize that your husband DID NOT PLAN THIS.

A completely innocent after-work meeting with co-workers can result in 2 people excited about a mutual project.

They end up spending a lot of time together. More time than with their spouse. The relationship becomes increasingly comfortable and your husband loves the attention of another woman.

It quickly spirals out of control and they start texting each other personal and intimate texts throughout the day.

The conversation shifts from business to life outside work. They go to late-night dinners and he shared personal details of his marriage with her.

Their communication defines their relationship as special and separate from their respective marriages.

This is how my husband’s emotional affair began.

(And I’m sure, in the back of mind, that if I hadn’t caught it in time, it would have naturally evolved into a physical affair as well.)

Your husband did not plan it, and his emotional cheating started innocently. He didn’t realize that this emotional attachment has threatened the very foundation of your marriage.

[yellowbox]If the right steps are not taken, and I mean right now, your husband’s emotional affair can end your marriage.[/yellowbox]

Why He Denies and Refuses to Let Go

Your husband, like any other emotionally unfaithful man, is addicted.

Emotional cheating (with an “office wife”, a “chat room lover” or “newly discovered ex”) involves secrecy, deception and betrayal.

But emotional cheaters convince themselves that they’re doing nothing wrong, as long as they’re not having sex. They convince themselves that they are victims of controlling wives who want to decide who they can and can not be friends with.

An emotional cheater becomes dependent on the other woman for emotional highs. They’re loving the flirting, the sympathetic ear and the excitement of feeling special again.

He will tell you to stop being to insecure. To stop being jealous. That there’s nothing wrong with having friends from the opposite sex.

They don’t want to realize how destructive their emotional attachment is to your marriage .

How to Overcome Your Husband’s Emotional Affair

In the 3 years I’ve been writing this blog I have seen the destruction caused by emotional affairs – Time after time.

The trust that’s so hard to restore. The feelings of low self-esteem, the constant suspicion, the accusations, the heartache, the constant anxiety – The marriage seems to be hanging on a thin thread.

But I’m here to tell you that it’s up to you. You can decide that this is not how your story ends.

If you get the right kind of help (and I can only recommend the kind of help that has saved MY marriage), you’ll be able to overcome this crisis, and come out with a better marriage at the end.

If you want to know how to finally overcome your husband’s affair, sort through your emotions, learn how to trust him again and how to prevent this from ever happening again – You’ll have to know the exact right steps to take and at what order.

You don’t have to stay stuck.

Don’t try to do it on your own. There’s no time for trial and error. Saving your marriage has to start now.

I am living proof – It CAN be done.

Rooting for ya,



What do you think? Is it possible to overcome a spouse’s emotional affair?

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  1. Thanks so much for sharing your story, Lisa. Happily ever after is not usually the path of most marriages after “I do” is spoken. But if the last chapter has not yet written (and if you are breathing, it has not) a happy ending is possible. Thanks for your courage and encouragement of others “to overcome this crisis, and come out with a better marriage at the end.”

    My objective with Spouse Dates is to help couples use dating as a means to cultivate a great marriage. I would love to hear your thoughts on how dating your spouse might help in a “post-affair” type situation.

    Visiting from Messy Marriage’s Wedded Wednesday.


  2. Lisa-
    I want to thank you for writing these words. Going through this is the hardest thing. To be able to trust a person again, after things happen (even if they are not constituted as “classical cheating”) is very difficult for me right now. Many people say, “Once a cheater, always a cheater”, and that hurts. No one knows all aspects of the relationship except for the two people in it. I am putting everything I can back into this relationship and I hope he is too. Time will only tell if I can heal completely and trust again. It will be a lot of work, but we can only hope for the best. I guess I’m in that place right now where, even though a little time has passed, it’s still there in my mind. Whenever I have some time alone and I’m not keeping busy, it pops up like a little gnat. I just really appreciate this story for all that it is, a strong woman looking out for herself while working to bring a relationship new life.

  3. I found out mine had been cheating for a year. I am not one that likes idea of today’s disposable relationships. I had invested 8 years of my life with him. Remembering things from the classes of a family member who was training to be a pastoral counselor. Yes, He had rules and boundaries that he needed to adhere to if he wanted to work together for our relationship. Those rules not only pertain to him but to myself as well. In discovering those things we “lost” or “missed”; we found that we both allowed this to happen. We took each other for granted. We both assumed instead of asking each other what we needed. It is not an easy road, but I have faith that we will continue to walk together. We still have a ways to go but both are working on our relationship everyday.
    Yes, there are days that are bad for me “re-living” the pain. Those are the times he listens not only to the content but the pain he has caused. He stated often he wished I would hit him as he can deal with that pain better than the pain he caused me. I do have hope for us. I am glad there are people like you writing about this to help others that maybe working together from this can make you stronger. Thank you

    • Charity,

      Thank you so much for sharing youe personal experience, feelings and pain.

      I wish you two the best and to me at least it sounds you’re going to make it.

      Hang in there and keep me updated if you wish, I’d love to hear from you.


  4. my husband is very much in denial about the fact that he was excessively texting his work friend. How do I get him to see my side of this and how damaging this is to our marriage?

    • He is not really in denial, he is denying it to you. That’s a big difference. Even if he is really convinced that nothing he is doing is wrong, deep down he knows the truth.

      The way to make him see that this is damaging to your marriage is not to forbid him to do this, because it will only make it even more exciting for him (the forbidden fruit…), so it has to be done in a smart way.

      I would pretend, or a while, that it’s doesn’t bother you at all and even ask her to your home for dinner or a meeting with other collegues of his, so you can meet her and see what’s going on with your own eyes.

      Once she sees you and see that you are a real person, she may back off. Plus, you may come to the conclusion that nothing is going on here, your instincts will tell you.

  5. How do I refrain from confronting his work friend and making it clear to her that she needs to back away from my husband

  6. wow. I thought I was reading my own story. I discovered my husband doing the same things. My life will never be the same.

  7. She was his ex. He thought of marrying her but for some reasons he declined (so he told me). But he has been on phone and social media with her. I noticed they talk on phone mostly when he is not at home and they chat often especially at night but my hubby deletes the chat thread. She is married now but her husband doesn’t live with her. She sends pictures to him too cos she lives in another country but in Europe too. I feel so betrayed and confused, our marriage is just one year and 4 months but we started living together just month ago. I am heartbroken

  8. Amy,

    Under these circumstances, you have every right to demand that he cuts all contact with her. If he wants your marriage to work, he will agree to this.

    If he doesn’t, it may be time to accept this reality and understand that maybe it wasn’t meant to be.

    He is obviously still hung up on her in some ways, and only cutting contact with her and restoring your trust in him can save your marriage.

    If he agrees (and I hope he does), ask him to sign the “post affair agreement” layed out in this post:

    I hope this helps and hang in there, everything that happens – Happens for good reasons and for your own good – In the long term. It’s what I believe anyway…