DEAR DEIDRE: I WAS gutted to discover that my wife has joined a website for married people who want to hook up with each other.
We’ve been married for 19 years and I thought she was happy with our relationship and our sex life. Now it seems she’s having some sort of mid-life crisis.
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She’s 47 and I’m 50.
Everything was fine until about two months ago, when a workman came to fit our new kitchen.
He was young, around 30, and very physically fit. I don’t look bad for my age but I don’t work out.
My wife made it clear she liked this guy’s looks. I’d catch her staring at him and she was openly flirty, always offering him cups of tea and chatting more than was necessary.
Nothing happened between them but it seems to have awoken something in her. Afterwards, she started going online to find men who wanted no-strings sex.
The evidence was on her tablet. She was talking to three guys, all younger than her, and the chat was explicit.
This feels even worse than learning she’s having an affair. She hasn’t just fallen for someone — she’s actively going out looking for sex with other men.
It makes me feel like I’m not good enough. I have never been anything other than a supportive husband and I feel so hurt and sad.
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I don’t think she’s actually met anyone for sex yet but I’m sure that is just a matter of time.
She recently got a job that involves lots of travel and I guess she is planning to meet some of these men and sleep with them then.
I love her and want to deal with this — but how? If I confront her, I’m scared she’ll leave me.
DEIDRE SAYS: Your shock and hurt are understandable. The woman you love is actively seeking sex with other men and you feel betrayed.
It is possible she is just enjoying the attention she is getting from these men and doesn’t intend to cheat physically. But regardless, what she is doing is emotional cheating.
If she is unhappy, she needs to talk to you and to try to repair your relationship.
Pick a calm moment to speak to her. If she feels there is an issue with your sex life – perhaps it has grown stale – say you want to improve this.
Some relationship counselling, alone or together, could help you both.
Contact tavistockrelationships.org (020 7380 1960). My support pack on Looking After Your Relationship will help too.
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