Could He Be Having An Affair? What’s Going On?

You Ask

Dear Ruthanne,

I am not married to a governor or a sports figure.  Those are the types of men that seem to be having affairs.  Or the type getting caught having affairs.  My husband is a good man, a wonderful provider, a kind, hard-working man with high moral values, yet the other day I noticed an opened envelope left on the counter with the charge account invoice in it.  Perusing through I came upon the regular charges: Home Depot, Amazon, gas stations, restaurants, I-Tunes, and a “bar/nightclub” charge three different times for three different amounts, and at an out of town city too.  Quick, I get my calendar and check the date of the charges…yes, he was out of town.  Sunken, I feel it is not a charge mistake or a charge of someone who got a hold of our numbers.  Heart racing, getting nauseous, I call him and ask what this is.  His response is way out of line for my question.  So is it because he’s guilty of an affair, a one-night tryst, a night with a “dancer”? Or is he hiding something for a friend, a brother, or a colleague?  What do I do now?  How do I speak to him? What do I say? Help!

We Answer

Dear One,

Thank you for sharing this very difficult situation. I know that finding out this kind of information can cause such distress. The first thing I will advise to you is to try again to talk with him, but this time in person. Attempting to stay calm and non-accusatory, let him know that when you found those charges on the credit card bill, you felt very upset and that his response upset you further. Ask him again if he could explain the charges. I think it is important not to jump to the worst conclusions in these situations. Trust what you know about your husband being a good and honest man with high moral values. If he was out of town on those days, he might have just decided to go out for a drink. When you called upset he may have reacted defensively and therefore out of proportion to what actually happened. This might begin a conversation that could have each of you discussing the boundaries of how much freedom you each feel okay about when the other goes away. Everyone needs to feel some sense that they can have a life separate from their partners, and in fact, it is very healthy for the relationship for each person to have that. The trick is determining what level of freedom is comfortable for each party. If you can attempt this conversation again, with as much calm as you can muster, owning that you may have over-reacted, you will also have another opportunity to gauge his response. If he continues to be defensive and/or evasive, it is possible that something else is going on. Affairs are always a hard thing to face and the person who suspects an affair can live in fear and denial for a long time, not wanting to really know the truth. In the long run however, the truth is the best path. So, take a deep breath and ask him for some quiet time for a talk and see if you can find out more information and hopefully put the matter to rest. Wishing you all the best.

Ruthanne Harris Carosio

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  1. It does seem that everybody is into this kind of stuff lately. Don

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