Hello Dr Love…. During the past week there has been suspicious activity with social media between my husband and another woman in a town 30 miles away. We have farm animals and he gets very angry if I don’t want to go to the auctions, or out to eat etc. Well now he’s making a trip to pick up animals in the town this woman lives in and got angry when I said I was going to ride along. Is this a clear sign he’s cheating?
I can understand why you are suspicious. Normally he wants you to go to the auctions and out to dinner and this time he’s angry that you want to ride along.
It is very likely that he has felt hurt by your refusals to go with him. He may have pulled away from you and begun looking for someone else to give him attention. Enter the woman he’s texting who happens to live in the same town as the animals who were auctioned.
If you want this marriage, which I assume you do, rather than attack him head-on with your cheating suspicions, you could invite your husband to talk with you about his disappointment in you for not going with him to auctions and dinner. If he feels heard and understood and you make an effort to show him that you care about his needs, and actually respond to his needs for your attention and company, you may not be too late to abort an affair before it blossoms into a flame that could torch your marriage to smithereens.
The idea is to treat the potential cheating as a non-verbal communication, which it invariably is in all cases. The message to the cheatee is, “Screw you, you aren’t meeting my needs. I’ll go elsewhere.”
When feelings are put into words, they don’t need to be expressed through non-verbal screw you.
The way forward is to open a conversation in which you invite the other to voice his/her disappointment in you. To do this, you have to have the emotional strength to take blame on yourself.
Here’s how to do this. You could start by saying, “I think I have been neglecting you lately. You’ve asked me to go to auctions and out to dinner and I’ve declined more than once…I sense that you have been pulling away from me. And, I wonder if your reaction is because you felt that I’m not interested in you.”
Lean back and let him talk.
Invite him to voice his disappointments. Listen, understand and don’t defend yourself.
If you do this right, and you change what you are doing that makes him feel neglected, you will rekindle his feelings for you and abort the affair before it gets off the ground.
Let me know how you make out.