“Just so you know,” he wrote to me that night, “I’m not going to be able to keep my hands off you for long.” A few days later we met for seltzers on a rooftop bar, and I curled up into him. I could hear the shuffle of footsteps and the murmur of voices, desk drawers opening and closing and phones ringing as he slowly traced his fingertips across me and looked at me like he never wanted to stop.
It’s going to be hard to get over you, I thought, closing my eyes trying to freeze this moment at the very beginning that I already knew was catapulting towards an end.
Then I leaned in and kissed him, pulling him towards me.
Only a week and a half after meeting him, I was having a full-blown affair with a married man and could no longer recognize my life.
Dating a married person is like throwing a stone that will hit you back when you are married,” says Chimalizeni.When your spouse cheats on you, your brain experiences conflict as the neuronal network structure responsible for feelings of trust and love towards your partner can no longer be maintained (just as a drug addict who no longer receives drugs on a regular basis experiences withdrawal symptoms).“The brain then has to re-adjust the neuronal network structure to meet the demands of the current situation.This process, however, can be very stressful and if not timely addressed may result into major depression,” she warns.I’d been unemployed for almost a year and spent most of my time alone, on top of which I hadn’t dated or had sex in the four years I’d been hung up on my ex.Every day was drudgery as I sank further and further into painful isolation.I had no desire to put myself in that situation again. When he walked in, the first thing I noticed as he reached to hug me was his wedding ring.Looking over the menu, we talked about writing as if this was a business lunch, but my heart was pounding.Left to myself, my depression, anxiety, and OCD had been progressively getting worse, and I’d even started having debilitating panic attacks. But suddenly, I was alive, desired, and filled with passion and vitality. Overnight I went from years of celibacy to being naked on the floor of his office in the middle of the afternoon, constantly emailing and sexting, and having late-night dirty chats on Facebook.Consumed with thoughts of him, when we weren’t together I was either lost in memories, reliving every detail of every second with him, or longing for him, trying to figure out the next time we could see each other.I didn’t feel like pretending either; I could pretend for years, wanting something more but subsisting on the pretense of a friendship with a subtext of sexual attraction, living indefinitely in an unfulfilling fantasy. Sitting across from him, he pressed his leg into mine under the table. “I should tell you,” I confessed, propping my elbows on the table and leaning forward, “I have this pattern with unavailable men.” I told him about the guy I had a fling with who lived with his girlfriend, and my ex I couldn’t get over, who was married when I met him.We’d had a flirtation for a couple of months before his marriage dissolved, and started dating as soon as he got separated.