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Marriage shortly after an affair

by Eileen S
(Flanders, NJ USA)

My husband of 26 years had a one month affair with a woman from his sophomore year in high school. He is 48 and I am 47. His paramour is also 47. He left me in July, 2011 to start a new life with her. Our children (20 and 18) are devastated but hers (21 and 19) are accepting (this is not the first man she has done this with.) He told me last week, 9 weeks after vacating our home that he plans not only to move in with her, but to marry her.

The question is, can you love someone you've really only known for three short months enough to marry them? I believe he is mistaking sex, infatuation and lust for love. I didn't see it coming. He said he wanted to start a new life and off he went. He gave up our home, money, relationships with friends, family and our children for this woman. He is living in a bungalow off a dirt road with little food in the fridge and an hour and a half commute to work.

We have resorted to mostly texting (thank God for texting) and when we do talk he is robotic almost like he has practiced what to say. He is devoid of emotion. He claims he is entitled to his happiness and that he will be happy shortly. Parenthetically, his "happiness timeline" has changed many times - 6 months, 2 months, next year, 2 weeks from now, etc. is when he expects to be happy. This is not the gentle, kind, generous, fun man I married. I am floored that they are already talking marriage while I'm still trying to process what just happened.

Thank you.

Noel's response

Sounds awfully fast to me. I have met a few people who have got married after knowing each other a short time, and it lasted, but I have met more have done so and it not lasted.

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