When you fall in love, it’s exciting and life-changing. Cupid shot his bow, and it landed in your lap. Sure enough, the more time you spend with your new man—the more you adore him.

On the other hand, when you haven’t heard from your lover in over an hour, you long to hear a word or whisper from him, a whisper that stirs excitement and burns with glory. And it’s wondrous.

Your big problem?

It’s forbidden love.

I know all there is to know about loving someone in the dark. I get it. I’ve been in your position and know how disheartening it is.

In short, a gigantic wall exists between you and the person you want. And it’s complicated.

You might be thinking, “How can what I feel be wrong?”

And if it were just about sex… That would make it easier.

He’s now in your heart, and you have questions.

“Why do I feel this way?”

“Can we ever be together?”

“Will he leave his wife?”

Questions that are confounded with confusion.

But… is he also looking for answers?

The advice I have isn’t what you want to hear.

The truth?

When it comes to loving a married man…

All you’ll have—even after 11 years—are questions. And pain. (That’s if he doesn’t leave his wife for you. It happens.)

Indeed, we can’t see love, nor can we touch it. But in marriage, something else is at work that you can’t see.

Yes, I’m concerned about your heart, but I worry more about your job and finances. And what will happen to you if you commit adultery.

Because it happened to me.

For years, I had holes in my wallet, and a hidden life. I was a secret, and no one knew. I want to save you time and trouble. And money.

You see, according to the Bible, sexual sin is linked to poverty. Surprisingly, nothing will make you poor quicker than infidelity because adultery turns off prosperity.

In my case, a few months turned into one year, and one year quickly became 11 painful years. Today, his wife still doesn’t know. And I marvel at how his double life remained undiscovered.

The gigantic wall between you and him?

The ring.

But it’s not just a silver band across a finger on a hand that entwines with yours… His ring symbolizes something more than commitment.

According to pastor and author Mark Driscoll, marriage consists of two holy things: covenant and consummation.

And a covenant is made between two people and God.

So if you love a married man…

You have an enormous problem.

a man who values you
will never hide you
—Sensitive.poet

Natural and spiritual consequences of adultery

Whether you’re religious or not, you don’t need to believe the Bible for the spiritual consequences of adultery to ravage you. But if you don’t believe me, continue in the affair and watch Satan raise hell in your life. And usually, things don’t go pear-shaped for a while; demons delay and accumulate torment.

Then one day…

Evil spirits open the floodgates of hell.

But I didn’t believe it. Until I lost everything.

The unveiled truth an affair partner should know.

“The person who gets hurt is you.”

I was 25 at the time, and those were the words my mom used after she met the man I fell for. He asked to meet her, to tell her how he felt about me. Strange how he made his feelings seem ‘allowed.’

But moms always know better.

Still, at the time, I believed the relationship I had with him was different. Yes, he had confessed his love for me, and we were intimate, but seven years later, at age 32, I still believed the same thing:

I wasn’t having an affair.

“Extramarital relationships are short-term, fleeting. But our relationship will never end.”

The truth?

Every woman believes this.

And in the beginning…

The man believes it too.

The affair partner is robbed of memories, and haunted by them.

Affairs, marriage, and divorce

According to statistics:

  • 75% of couples who began their relationship through an affair, but later married, divorce within five years.
  • 20-40% of divorces are a result of infidelity.
  • Only 5-7% of affair relationships end up in marriage.

RELATED: Can you really love two people at the same time?

The life of the affair partner

You feel seen, you feel accepted. But everything happens behind closed doors.

In short, he fuels the relationship. And nobody knows.

He sends you text messages throughout the day. He calls. He reassures you. And has private pet names for you.

In Selena Gomez’s words: he sets fire to your forest, and he lets it burn.

And it’s all fun and flames.

Until it’s not.

Any memories you share with a married man are stolen, forgotten moments that can never be spoken about at the dinner table with friends or family.

No selfies together. No photographs.

No evidence of another life he lived.

A relationship with a married man exists in a parallel world, not the real world.

Start creating demands

Has your relationship undergone any stressors? What will he need to sacrifice to be with you?

A man may see his wife as the mother of his child and you as a good time. But are you ‘real-life’ or just an escape? If the relationship exists in a bubble with no expectations from your side… Is it sustainable? A man will not hesitate to have you—his cake—and his wife. Then still dump you after you hit 30 and threaten you if you expose the relationship. Most importantly, a man wants to protect his reputation in front of his family, especially his kids. What happens when his image is threatened? When his daughter finds out? What happens to you?

The “other” woman experiences more pain than the wife.

You need to understand that I’m not talking about a sleazy fling. I’m referring to a relationship where a man pursues and confesses his love for you—when you are kept on a string for months. Or even years.

The wounded wife can open up to her friends and family about the ordeal and receive counseling and support, but what could be more devastating? You: the woman who gave herself to a man but has no shoulder to cry on when the relationship ends. As a mistress, you’ll be shunned by people, not consoled. So you’ll keep it secret. And brood.

In fact, there’ll be no evidence the relationship existed. Not even a divorce.

“Affairs are like delicate flowers; they can only grow in a climate-controlled environment. Once you take a delicate flower away from its natural environment and into the real world, it dies. An affair, whether an emotional affair or a sexual one takes a lot of work and consumes energy because they are taboo and are meant to be kept a secret, to be enjoyed only behind closed doors.”Corrina Horne

When a married man cups your face in his hands and tells you you’ve awakened love in chambers in his heart he never knew existed… You won’t feel like you’re doing anything wrong. Guarding your heart proves difficult. You may be sincere… but sincerely wrong. In the end, you’ll be heartbroken and get no sympathy or vindication.

In contrast, the married man receives little judgment or disdain. And is even celebrated if he stays with his wife. But nobody heard what he said to the affair partner behind closed doors—confessions of love!

The “other” woman (you) is often worse off than the grieving spouse because no one feels sorry for a ‘cheater.’ However, she was tricked, deceived, into believing there would be a future for her and the man.

If you feel for a married man, pray about the relationship. It’s better to talk to God than not talk to him. He’s a trustworthy man. God will orchestrate circumstances so that the relationship loses its luster. And every woman needs an all-knowing, all-seeing friend. Developing an infatuation for a married man is common. But true love is rare. Only God’s knows your intentions. You want him on your side.


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The bottom line

A quick affair isn’t the worse thing that can happen to you. An affair that lasts years is.

Yes, he may leave his wife.

But when? There’ll come a time when you’ve had enough.

If I could go back… What would I do differently?

You have two unconventional choices.

Option one:

It may seem sinister…

But if he’s been intimate with you loves you, his covenant is broken. The truth is the truth, whether it’s out in the open or hidden.

To find out his true colors…

Let his wife ‘catch’ you.

Perhaps I only say this in hindsight because I feel cheated, cheated out of my twenties, out of memories. And not with him… but with someone who could’ve loved me, who could still be loving me today.

And you’ll feel the same way.

Pay a stranger to call his wife and tell her that her husband is seeing another woman and she must be at [insert place you meet] at 7 pm.

A married man may get away with adultery because he convinces his wife it meant nothing. His wife has never seen the way her man looks at you nor knows what goes on behind the scenes.

He loves you?

When you see the look on his face when his wife walks in the room…

You’ll know IF he loves you.

Harsh? A bit.

Or…

If you really love him and respect yourself…

The second option is to cancel your meetup, never see him again, and pray for him instead.

You decide.

In my instance, it’s scary to think there’s a woman out there who has no idea her husband had an 11-year relationship with a woman he treated like a wife.

After 11 years, I chose option two and lost the best parts of my twenties and thirties.

Don’t make the same mistake.