Why do people have affairs? Ask that question and the answers you’ll get will probably be more varied than pebbles on the Michigan shoreline. Some will tell you it’s the thrill of doing something illicit, others will argue for the need to be loved in a loveless marriage, while there are those who will claim that the heady chemistry of a new partner is too much to pass up. Maybe all of these are valid reasons. Maybe not.
But what people often fail to consider during affairs, is the fact that, when the proverbial poop has hit the metaphorical fan, the end result is rarely good. When your marriage has disintegrated in the wake of the affair, you are likely to end up alone. Statistically, very few marriages survive in the wake of an affair.
Hey, no problem, right? You can just start over with that wonderful new partner that helped to get you into this pickle in the first place. After all, you two had such fun together and you really understood each other in ways that no one else could. And the sex was great. It’ll be wonderful, right? We’ll be happy together, forever, just like we are every time we’re together, right?…right? Not so fast…
In truth, there is a very low probability that your new relationship will survive. Current statistics show that over 75% of marriages that began as affairs, don’t survive past the five year mark. So while it does occasionally happen, it’s highly unlikely that this love-of-your-secret-life will end up as your happily-ever-after soulmate. Not convinced? When you think about it, it actually makes sense…
“When mistrust comes in, loves goes out.” – Irish proverb
Trust is a big deal in a marriage. After all, if you can’t trust your partner, then your marriage is on very shaky footing and has a very low chance of survival. Can you trust your new affair partner? Think about it… this is the person who was content to have an affair with you behind your spouse’s back.
The problem with marrying your affair partner is that you are essentially marrying a cheater. Both you and your new partner got to be where you are because you were willing to deceive a spouse in order to get what you wanted. Consider the facts. This is probably not a recipe for a relationship built on trust, which may make your future together very uncertain.
“The worst enemies are the ones that used to be friends.” – Paul Chucks
You cannot have an affair, breakup a marriage, and not incur the wrath of a whole host of people along the way. Your ex, possibly your children (if they are old enough to understand what happened), all of your ex’s friends and family, along with a sizable number of your own friends and possibly even co-workers who disapprove of what you did.
Realistically, there is no way that the stress this adds to your life isn’t going to affect your new relationship. Having to avoid people in public, being forced to choose a new favorite restaurant or coffee shop, giving up a favorite weekend hobby because the people you used to get together with no longer treat you the same way. Being ostracized, even in small ways, tends to lead to guilt and resentment and shame, all of which will serve to undermine your new relationship.
While there is always the possibility that your affair-turned-marriage will be wedded bliss, you need to be aware of the realities. Brandy Thompson, a dedicated family law attorney at The Kronzek Firm, says that “You may want to consider an antenuptial/prenuptial agreement to ensure that regardless of whether you have a life long marriage or a marriage ending in divorce, your assets and children (if you have them from a prior relationship) are protected.”
Join us next time, as we continue unpacking the subject of why affair partners don’t usually make good spouses, and look at all of the reasons why. Until then, if your marriage is falling apart and you need help determining what your future is going to look like after a divorce, call us at 517 886 1000. The skilled family law attorneys at the Kronzek Firm have helped countless people in mid-Michigan through their divorces. We can help you too.