Let us take a look at what Peggy is going through. She is 52 and tells me that when she dresses up, she still looks pretty good and so does her husband who is 58. But what is the problem then? "I don't think nothing could help my marriage but to have an extra-marital affair and maybe my husband would find out and maybe things would change. I don't even know when was the last time we made love. I'm thinking about having an affair. Could you help?"
This is a bad strategy. To have an affair to prove to yourself that you are still desirable or to take revenge on your partner or to make her/him jealous. If you want to have an affair then have it to please yourself, not to hurt anyone else.
If your relationship is not working then what you need to do is to fix the situation. In my opinion, Peggy's situation is very similar to that of Karen's since both of you have husbands who have lost interest not only in their wives but also in life in general (otherwise, how could you just give up on your lovely wife?).
Recommended next steps when you are in a relationship that is no longer a meaningful relationship
- Sit down and list all the things that you see are wrong with the relationship. Be objective and see who is at fault. It is OK to find that your partner is to blame for everything as long as you are objective and feel that you have done a fair evaluation.
- Talk to your partner and mention that you would like to discuss something important about the relationship. You do not have to shout or fight but only mention what has been bothering you. Observe your partner's reaction. If s/he is ready to listen and do something about it, agree on what you can both hope to achieve in a reasonable period of time. Even if the objectives are small, it is OK, as long as the spirit is there to make improvements.
- Agree on how you both will work on them, who is going to help and how, when will you review the progress, and what happens if the desired outcome is not achieved.
- If at the end of this exercise, you still have no progress, it is time to pack your bags and leave. You will walk away with a clear conscience and guilt will never haunt you as you move on.
Back to the extra-marital affair issue. Well, if you do have someone in mind, and s/he is willing to keep it as discreet as possible, go ahead if you can engage in it without getting emotional. But in reality though, it might not help your existing relationship, and results might be disastrous if your partner finds out. What is better is that your partner starts to realize that if s/he does not pay the attention that you deserve, there are others out there who will assume the role for you.
Recommended article: When is a good time to break up?