Of course, since writing the post earlier I’ve thought of nothing else other than us, and I’ve managed to cast my mind back to the end of August when I gave Hollie an article describing the “Affair Fog” which I thought she was in. I remember it focussing on 2 things, firstly that the fog was causing her to believe things that weren’t true etc and secondly the impact it had on those around her. Although I intended her to take note of the first bit, it was the second bit that hit home and made her realise what she was doing.
At the time, no-one knew the extent of what was going on so I didn’t want that part of the article to have an impact, but looking back now that’s exactly where we are – me, our children, her family, my family and our friends are all being negatively impacted to some degree by what’s happened, the shockwaves are far and wide and yet Hollie sits in the eye of the storm where everything is calm, to some degree oblivious to the pain and hurt that others are feeling around her.
So I’ve gone in search of the article again, only to find the place where it was originally hosted has vanished into the internet black hole, probably never to resurface. Of course, with the affair fog being such a well known phenomenon, there are many other places that discuss it, one of which I’d like to refer to here and talk about because of the quite frightening similarity to my current situation.
Is Your Spouse In An Affair Fog
The article talks about what the fog is (which no doubt I’ve bored you all to tears with), both the emotional and chemical side of how the brain works when faced with this initial attraction. I won’t quote any of that section as some is repeated later but it’s very apparent from reading it that I’ve experienced much of it over the last year.
The second part of the article details how to identify if your spouse is still within that zone by what they say:
Does your spouse tell you that the marriage was a mistake in the first place?
But no it really wasn’t. Your spouse just thinks it is now because he/she is comparing the heady rush of this affair with the seeming monotony of your married life. Your relationship was a heady rush in the beginning too but, in time, that gave way to more practical rather than romantic things as you became more comfortable and secure in your relationship.
Not directly, no. But her assurance that she’s never felt for me what she feels for him implies this fact.
Does your spouse tell you that he/she loves you but is not just in love with you anymore.
That “being in love” feeling is what is giving your spouse this euphoric feelings that’s enveloping him or her in a bubble. This is the infatuation stage of every new relationship – and it is highly addicting. It is purely an emotional response that eschews reason, commitment and consideration for others. But like any addicting high, this one cannot last.
Yes, I’ve heard that. “Love you as a Daddy” as well.
Does your spouse tell you that he/she has found his/her soul mate.
Your spouse and his/her lover have isolated themselves in their own world of shared passion – their bubble – never mind what others think or feel. This isolation – this “us against the world” feeling – makes them think that they are absolutely the only two people who understand each other, hence the brand “soul mate”.
Yes, the term soul-mate has definitely been used.
Does your spouse tell you that you will be better off without him/her.
Your spouse would like to convince you that you can actually benefit from their infidelity. This is another way that your spouse can justify the affair, demonizing themselves and making themselves out to be no good for you, so that you will be convinced to let go.
I think I may have put this to her at some point but she certainly didn’t disagree with me!
Does your spouse tell you that the affair makes them a better person.
“If I am this happy, how can it be a bad thing?” is a question that wayward spouses asked themselves to convince them that they are not doing anything wrong by having an affair.
Yes, she’s told me that she has only one chance in life and that she has to make this change to ensure she lives it to the fullest.
Does your spouse tell you that it is your fault.
Before long, your spouse will turn the tables on you. Pointing out your flaws, your inattention, your lack of affection, and the neglect your spouse has supposedly suffered are all tailored to make you look like the bad one, and that you deserve being betrayed.
I know in the early stages of this blog I detailed all the things that Hollie told me I wasn’t doing and the neglect I had supposedly showed her. Not really that I deserve being betrayed, but the first few months of what I’ve been through was very much about how I don’t love her how she thinks she should be loved.
Does your spouse tell you that he/she doesn’t care what other people think or feel.
When in an affair fog, all that seemed to matter to your spouse is his/her feelings. A wayward spouse would probably reason it out, claiming that they’ve been putting the family’s needs above theirs for so long that this time, they’d like to put theirs first.
That last bit is 100% accurate, she’s said that she’s always done things for others and now it’s time to think of herself.
The rest of the article talks about what to do going forward and I think a lot of it revolves around her still living at home, which of course she doesn’t at the moment. So how do I get her out of the fog? One statement is hopefully very true:
When your spouse is in an affair fog, she is trapped in a fantasy world where the affair seems to give her all that she needs. But reality lurks persistently at the back of your wayward spouse’s consciousness – in her heart of hearts, she treasures the familiarity and comfort of marriage and family. For the moment, she is convinced that she can have both – familial comfort as well as the thrill of an affair.
Everyone has said that at the moment she’s trying to have it all, and I don’t think anything I’m doing is making her think otherwise. The part where I have to be really careful is not to ruin any chance of reconciliation once the fog lifts, and I’m not sure how to do that. I guess what I’m doing is ensuring that at the point where it does lift, when the thrill of the affair becomes everyday life, that she then compares what she has with what she had and realises that she’s made a mistake. Hopefully she can be strong enough to admit that.
Of course, I’ve made assumptions here. Her mannerisms and behaviour are so close to what I read that I have no doubt that she’s still in the fog, but of course I may be wrong. I will NEVER believe that she wants anything more than to see her kids growing up, that’s just beyond belief. For the moment I have to try and keep moving myself forward and hope that something keeps niggling away in her mind and releasing her from this emotional prison that she seems to be caught in. I will never stop believing that this will happen, and I will never lose faith in her.