Begging for forgiveness

I'm having an affair, and I'm disturbed by how little guilt I feel about it. Why? Because I'm actually really, really happy.

For many, many years I've been extraordinarily happy with my partner. He was my first proper love, the first person I had s** with and my only real relationship. We got together when I was young, fresh out of high school. We fit together perfectly. We have similar tastes, similar passions and, in general, a wonderful relationship. He is the most intelligent, supportive, sweet, romantic, fun and cute person I've ever known. We say 'I love you' several times a day, cuddle and kiss as much as we can and miss each other after only a few hours apart. We still talk until 2am about all sorts of topics, from the mundane to the really meaningful. We're like a new couple even though we've been together for over a decade.
Still, as with every relationship, the s** has gradually grown less frequent and, to be perfectly honest (and shallow) he's become less attractive as he's gotten older. Don't get me wrong, I still make love with him and it's still great, but it's changed. Comfort and familiarity have replaced passion in a lot of ways.

So when a man came along who was older, successful, flirty and attractive, I was very flattered. And being a very flirty person, I was a little encouraging. But to my credit, I'm flirty with everyone (I'll flirt with you, your girlfriend and your mother if she's hot) and I thought it was all harmless. Really I did, because normally it is with me.
But gradually things started to progress. I was infatuated, but I assured myself (truthfully) that I'd been infatuated with friends before without being sexually attracted to them. Sure, I'd fantasized about a few people, but I thought that was perfectly natural and I didn't actually want to act on it.

Yet this was different. He was so charming and smooth I found myself craving his company more and more, and fantasizing about him rather graphically. It'd been a long time since I'd felt that rush of getting a message from someone I fancied, of aching to hear from him again, of squirming with pleasure at his playful inuendo. I kept making deals with myself about how far I'd allow things to go, and one by one the deals crumbled. I promised I wouldn't peck him on the lips. When that happened, I assured myself that this was okay as I had other friends I kissed on the lips, so next up it was a promise not to let his hands roam anywhere inappropriate on my body. Whoops. Don't let our tongues touch? Oh dear. That first proper kiss was so amazing and different I found myself going back from more. But I wasn't going to let him slip his hands into my knickers, was I? Surely, surely, SURELY this wasn't going to end up in s**? No way. Never. I could never, ever do that to the person I really loved, who I'd been with for so many years ...

So now it's been a couple of months, and there's been some amazing s** with the new man. I pretty much thought s** was s** (and in terms of s** with my partner, it is and has always been really, really good. He's passionate, energetic, just the right amount of aggressive and, I won't lie, perfectly endowed and I always have several o******). I never would have guessed it could be so different. I'm sure this comes as no surprise to anyone who has had more than one sexual relationship, but there are just moves and ways of being touched that are so different it's exquisite.

So my final promise to myself was that I wouldn't fall in love, that this would just be a bit of a fun fling thing, a brief liaison that I could retroactively pretend happened before I met my partner. After all, my partner had some other girlfriends before me, so maybe this was just me fulfilling that secret desire to know what another man might have been like, if I'd had a relationship before my partner.
Can you guess what happened next?

I've stopped making promises to myself, because I obviously don't have the self-control to stick to them. Now I'm just seeing what happens. Will I still be with both men in 5 years? 10 years? I can't really think about it, because the prospect of being without either man is simply heart-breaking.

Now I know this is the sort of thing I would have been disgusted with a year ago: greedy harpy has two concurrent relationships while other people remain alone and can't even find one person to be with. But everything has changed. I don't feel greedy, I just feel incredibly happy to have these two people who I love and who love me. I desperately want to be honest with my main partner, but I know it would break his heart. Not just break it, it would crush the very life out of him, and that would crush the very life out of me. If I thought there was any possible way for me to express the desire to have a poly-amorous relationship with my partner, I'd do so. But I'm scared of it changing everything, of him never trusting me again or, worse, leaving me. Our relationship is so, so, so very good, and I love him so much. If anything, being with this other man just highlights how awesome my partner is and makes me want to tell him how much I love him all that more (which I do, every single day). The s** with my partner has also improved, as I relish the ways in which he's different.
My partner and I have occasionally discussed other couples who are poly-amorous, and we'd agreed that as long as people get into the relationship knowing what it's about and everyone agrees to it, there's no problem. But how was I supposed to know that I might develop this desire in my thirties when I was a teenager and first falling in love?

As it stands, I'm planning on just taking this secret to the grave (except posting it anonymously on here, of course). My second man is older, married and has a kid, so the chances of him outing me from jealousy are very, very slender (about as likely as me doing the same to him). I can't possibly tell any of my friends because I can't risk even the slightest possibility it will get back to my partner, and I really don't think anyone would understand. H***, a year ago I wouldn't have understood if one of my friends told me. I'd have said to them 'stop hedging your bets, pick one and dump the other!'
But I wouldn't have understood how complex life and love can be. This isn't going to end up as the plot of a rom-com movie, I can tell, but in it's own way it's kind of beautiful.

I guess in a deep, guilty recess of my heart, I just want someone to understand I'm not a horrible person and forgive me. Maybe then I can forgive myself.

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  • Wow! I agree with the last two sentences above. Other than that...OMG... and people want Casey Anthoney dead.

  • Same thing happened to me but my lover was single with three young kids he was extremely jealous needless to say we broke up I was heartbroken (still am three years later) we hooked off and on for the whole time including during the pregnancy of my second child with my husband but I love this man more deeply than anyone... I don't feel guilt about the affair but it has been an agonizing road sprinkled with some of the most fantastic moments of my life... So, I absolve is so unfair all the rules that we humans put on ourselves... We can not control who we love

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