How to End an Affair With a Married Woman

Lipstick on collar
A man with lipstick on his collar has his hands up as if proclaiming innocence as his wife grabs his collar. (Image: KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock/Getty Images)

If you are involved in an affair with a married woman, you may feel overwhelmed with feelings of guilt, confusion and shame. You might wonder what her husband would think if he found out, or if you are married, wonder about your own wife's feelings. One of the hardest parts of having an affair may be ending it. Although you may have thought it would be as simple as turning off your phone or erasing her from your contact list, ending an affair with a married woman will take some concentration and preparation.

Step 1

Prepare for consequences. It is important to mentally prepare yourself for the devastation your affair may cause once it is out in the open. Although there is no guarantee the woman you were involved with will tell her husband once you end the affair, there is always a chance. Affairs may lead to all sorts of undesirable consequences, such as legal action, retribution from family members and lost assets, warns Diana B. Denholm, medical psychotherapist and author of "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook." If you are involved in a relationship as well, your significant other will have to work through intense feelings of hurt and betrayal.

Step 2

Be direct. Be open and upfront with the woman you are involved with. Tell her that you will no longer be seeing her, and that there is no room for discussion. Saying, "I cannot be in a relationship with you any longer" doesn't leave much space for interpretation. If you say, "I think we should end this," however, you may be leaving room for discussion. If she tries to manipulate you into changing your decision, walk away, to avoid changing your mind. This is best if done in person, so that you can look her in the eye as you tell her about the decision you have made.

Step 3

Get rid of all memorabilia of your relationship. Conduct a deep cleaning in your home, searching for and eliminating anything that is connected to your ex-lover. Throw away anything and everything that even reminds you of her, according to Sarah Symonds, author of "Having an Affair? A Handbook for the Other Woman." As you are cleaning, resist stopping and reading through old letters the two of you exchanged, or admiring gifts she gave you. The point of cleaning out your house is to cut all emotional ties and end your relationship for good.

Step 4

Pursue a new hobby. While you may be unsure why this is necessary to recover and move on with your life, pursuing a new interest allows you to redirect your life's focus. Instead of dwelling on your ex-lover and the times you had together, join an activity such as yoga or a writing class. Focusing on your passions will give you inspiration and help clear your mind from the mistakes you made. It will energize you for the future and allow you to move on completely from your affair.

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