Tami and I tried out a new restaurant the other night. If I can be honest, the food was just ok. And since I am are being honest, let me tell you what was going on at the table next to ours.
Right next to us was a smartly-dressed forty-something couple having a glass wine and some appetizers. When we first sat down, I assumed this was a husband and wife enjoying a date night out on the town, sans kiddos. Since Tami and I just sat down, we were busy trying to get ourselves situated. We were looking at the menu to see what sounded good and asking our waiter some clarifying questions as we took in the simple ambiance at this restaurant. About 10 minutes into our experience at this restaurant, the woman at the table next to us stood up abruptly, wiped some tears from her face, grabbed her purse, and headed for the door. She was obviously very upset about something. It took some convincing by her date, but he was able to get her back to their table to continue their time together. At this point, Tami and I were feeling bad for this couple since we have had dates laced with misunderstandings and unresolved conflict in the past as well.
Five more minutes into our dinner and Tami and I went from feeling like this couple may be in trouble, to knowing they were. We started to hear elevated conversation as this couple lobbed verbal blows toward each other. As much as Tami and I were trying not to listen, we couldn't help but to hear comments like, "This is not what you promised me," "You told me that you would leave her," "Your kids are not my problem," "If you don't tell him, I will," and "I'm tired of keeping all of this a secret." These are all phrases we have heard more than we care to admit as we help couples work through the devastation of an affair-rocked marriage. Part of me wanted to get up and leave since this was not the relaxing time Tami and I had hoped for. Another part of me wanted to sincerely offer some help since Tami and I have experience working with couples in this place. But I knew deep down that this was not a married couple trying to work through the unfaithfulness of a partner, this was the unfaithfulness being played out right before our eyes! And while this relationship was obviously painful for this couple at this moment, it was painful for Tami and I as well.
In fact, I would be willing to bet that this relationship is surrounded by pain: pain for this couple, pain for their spouses, pain for their kids, and much more. Here's the point, a great deal of people have thought that it may seem harmless or even fun to have an affair between two consenting adults. This is a lie. We have witnessed many affairs and can honestly say that we have never witnessed an affair that was pain-free. Never! Affairs are wrought with lies to spouses, secrets kept from friends, complex schedules, deception at work, and a great deal of time and money spent to attempt to cover your tracks. After all of that, the pain is still there.
So here's the point, don't do it! Don't entertain the thought of an affair. Instead, put your energy into enhancing your relationship with your spouse. See a well-recommended marriage counselor. Take a vacation together. Watch a sunset. The grass is not greener on the other side of the fence, the grass is greener where you water it and care for it! Furthermore, that proverbial fence is there to protect you and your marriage and to keep you safe. We have NEVER witnessed a pain-free affair. Never!
If you have any comments or questions about this post, we would love to hear from you in the comments below.
By Brad & Tami Miller. Contact us at brad@TandemMarriage.com. Copyright © 2019