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Joined: Aug 2000
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weep Offline OP
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Hi All, <P>Read some posts and felt that many people have different opinions on whether a EA or PA is worse (PA with EA is the bottoms).One female member puts her H's EA as worse than a PA because a PA is just a trespass of some physical body parts.<P>A male member puts it that he feels that his spouse has been used by the OM because she feels emotionally for the OM, whereas men tend to use and walk away without the emotional baggage.<P>Or could it be that the grass is worst in my own backyard? That is, if WS had an EA, EA is worse than PA, and vice versa? <P>MY VIEW: PA is worse because there the two become one flesh and one yolk. I feel you can like a person, be infatuated with a person but not consummate anything. But you can care two hoots about a person and still have sex which shows one takes sex too lightly. Sex defiles a marriage but falling for someone else can sometimes be cured. Sex cannot be undone.<P>Would like to hear your views on this.

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To me, sex can be "two becoming one" in every sense of the word, or it can be just two bodies getting each other off.<P>So, to me a PA (w/o emotional involvement) would be the least damaging. The emotional bond (with or without sex, but certainly with adds a special insult) is the part that is hardest for WS to break, and hardest for BS to accept, IMHO. <P>Kathi<p>[This message has been edited by kam6318 (edited October 13, 2000).]

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Dear weep,<P>To me, if EA led to PA, then that was the worst. PA without EA was the least. EA alone was somewhat in between. In my situation, it was the worst.<P>OOOO

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I agree with Kathi, EA's are the most damaging. If it was strictly PA I could see it as a miskate, a bad choice or a simply a screw up. EA's are inherently long term and breed deciption and lies. Many, many wounds instead of a few poor choices.

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Tough question, but I have given this some thought. <P>Although my H's EA was devastating to me, I came to understand his reasons for pursuing it, and I felt like there was something I could do about it (meeting his EN's of course). His attachment to OW hurt SO much, but at least I felt hopeful that our relationship would turn around if I could successfully meet his EN's over time - and that's exactly what is happening.<P>I do feel lucky that his relationship didn't progress to PA - she was/is just too far away and we don't have a budget that allows for flying around the country for rendevous. That would have been tougher.<P>And for me, a PA w/o EA would have been too far beyond my understanding. That would have been the toughest.<P>In either PA case, the "trespass of body parts" is a pretty big deal to me - and I'm not sure I would have been able to muster the determination to Plan A.<P>periwinkle

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I agree with Joe.

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I agree with Joe in TX, EA worse because of the length of time usually involved and the degree of unity between spouse and OP.**sigh** L

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This question has been posed many, many times on this site and most of the times it has appeared that PA's are worse for men, while EA's have been worse for women. For me, they both suck, for me they go hand in hand because it was an EA that turned into a PA that then returned to a EA. I can't say which is worse because it all hurts. Sometimes I feel like the EA is worse because of my W's emotional attachment to him, that she told him she loved him, told him things that he should have never, ever known. Then other times the PA is worse because she gave of herself "totally", maybe it wasn't being joined "together as one" for him, but it definitely was for her. I have experienced both and I can't say one is worse than the other, depends on what day it is I guess.

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Well, from my side of things, there is no difference to me between and EA and a PA - I think both the EA and the PA hurt my H. I think my H wouldn't have felt so bad if it was a one night stand, but since I had an EA that went to a PA - twice with the same OM - I think that was pretty hard.<P>As a WS, I was able to "blow off" the EA - rationalizing that it really wasn't an affair unless we had sex. Once the sex part happened, well, I lost it - that's when I told my H everything.<P>Another question, do you think it is easier to recover from a short-term affair - i.e., less than 6 months, or do you think it would be harder to recover from a long-term or recurring affair? I know, I know, it depends on the people involved, but my H seems to think that it would have been "harder" on him if I had been having the affair for years versus just a few months. Finally, I get to ask a question? yee haa. . .

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SKM, I actually don't know if length of time would have made much of a diference to me. For me it lasted 2 to 3 years. If I had discovered it early, my pride and arrogant self-esteem would have tossed her out the door without a second thought. If it had gone on much longer I would have been so completly withdrawn I probably wouldn't have cared; I would have just found a mistress of my own. Maybe I needed to be in that certan point of beaten down but not distroyed in order to have the will to fight for what was mine.<P>Geez, what a downer. I didn't intend for it to seem that depressing. I guess what I ment is that through fate or the will of God I was in the place I needed to be in order to save my family.<P>But that's my story and I'm stickin' to it [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]

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<BR>David Buss at UT-Austin has done studies across many cultures that show men are more distressed by sexual infidelity than emotional infidelity, while women are more distressed by emotional infidelity than sexual infidelity.<P>His explanation (which I don't buy) is that men fear mispaternity and women fear loss of resources. My own view is that it probably has more to do with women having the final say on whether to sexualize a relationship. A betrayed wife can always say, "Its just about sex," and while she's probably lying to herself, its at least possibly true. Most guys wouldn't want to think that their wife would have sex with someone else so cavilierly; if she would, its a huge ego blow to the man. Sort of, "I made you go through all these hoops to have sex with me, but then this hot stud came along and swept me off my feet," etc. Ouch. Anyhow, *that* explanation is too painful to consider, so the betrayed husband is left concluding that she probably really did have feelings for the OM, AND went ahead and consummated it to boot. Peter Salovey at Yale calls this the "double shot" hypothesis, and the idea is that for betrayed women, sex does not confirm an emotional betrayal. For betrayed men, sex confirms an emotional betrayal AND a physical betrayal. I think Salovey's right.<P>Bystander

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Very interesting, Bystander. Sounds accurate to me.<P>As far as recovery from EA's vs. PA's, Harley says it is much easier to have marital recovery from a simple PA than from an EA where those involved thought they were "soulmates". Much more difficult to have complete separation due to the attachment factor. PA's are usually willing to end the relationship without much fuss. <P>So I guess I wish my H's A was "only" a PA, then the only recovery issue that I would have would be that I'm married to a slimeball who used another woman.<P>Instead, I get to deal with an EA turned PA and have to deal with an H who was only trying to make another woman happy. Blech.

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Yes, I have read in more than i place that the emotional "soulmate" type is the hardest to recover from. I'd gladly have settled for a non-emotional PA...

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Amen. <P> But I forgot to mention, altho there are varying degrees of emotional involvement, withing the PA-EA spectrum of A's, Harley says the way to end the affair and restore the marriage is basically the same.

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During the time my H left me to be with the primary OW, he had an EA and PA with her and PAs on the side with at least two other women. I can tell you that I don't really care about the PAs one whit, because compared to the energy and devotion that he showed the primary OW (even though he was "betraying" her too) they are nothing. Just a physical release - possibly some sort of ego gratification.<P>The EA was more destructive to the marriage.<P>The PA made me more paranoid about disease - or that some woman is going to show up on our doorstep a year from now with his child in tow. <P>Both affected me, but I honestly think that if my H had had a PA only that resulted in a child being born, I could deal with it a lot better than the EA/PA he had with his primary OW. I would have to know that my H did not care one bit about the OW he had a PA with, though - and I mean, he would have to show her the uttermost disregard.<P>I feel hateful saying this, but sometimes it gives me a little twitch of pleasure knowing that my H "cheated" on the primary OW with other OWs. <P>belld

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I find that the pure PA doesn't bother me the way the EA does. My H had EA that slowly evolved into PA. After D-day, he lived w/OW for months and then separated from her and got involved with 2nd OW.<P>I could always tell from the way he acted that 2nd OW was purely a PA and she meant nothing to him but a good time. The first OW was different and she has continued to be an on and off thing for him that he can't seem to break away from. I find that I don't feel bad toward the 2nd OW, in fact, kinda feel sorry for her, because she obviously loved him, but resent the 1st OW very much because she retains an emotional bond with my H.<P>I don't condone either one but the EA is much more treatening to me and harder to get over.<P>Faye

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I think the EA may be harder to overcome.<P>At least in my own case, my W doesn't understand (or want to understand) the concept of an EA. She'll admit that the OP (OP's?) fullfill an emotional need that I wasn't meeting, but in her mind there is no affair. It's merely my jelousy or need to control her.<P>Whether the EA led to a PA is unknown. She says not, but then, she's not admitting to an EA either. After all, there's no such thing as a EA... <P>...And the cycle of logic continues again.<P>Either way, EA and PA both s*ck!<P>--keystone<P>

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I recall a few women I was once acquainted with and they are of the PA only types. At that time. I didn't quite understand that concept because they seemed very happily married to me. Their husbands were very nice and faithful types. I know one of them would have regular toy boys (she was much older than I so I couldn't relate to the idea at that time). Another woman who is wealthy in her own right, told me of 'her fantasies with a new man because she is sick of her own husband'. She asked me to travel with her to do some buying but I stopped the friendship because I couldn't be her alibi.<P>I felt that she must be out of her mind - I was married to the first H then who was an abused orphan who went on to abuse me and was WS to boot. Although I never thought she had the better husband then, on reflection and since having divorced the first H (so no disloyalty issue here), I should be glad to swap places with her.<P>So, in a nutshell, there are women who just want a different scene.

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I vote with the majority who say that an EA that led to a PA is the worst. <BR>My stbx had an EA with 1stOW which caused our seperation, but then he had a PA with another OW. The 2nd OW was someone we (H & I)both work with and I know that when it was over she had a very difficult time. I'm sure that she considered it an EA/PA. Although I don't think he felt she was his "soulmate" I do believe that he cared for her. But now he says it was only for sex, and that it was okay because we were seperated. <BR>He's only confessed to the one EA/PA, never to the 1st EA, or the others after it.<P>After 4yrs of seperation I met someone who I cared a great deal for, so I suppose this would be considered an EA. <BR>I told my stbx about my growing emotions for this OM and he was very upset, he said that his was "only for sex" so it was okay, but that since I had real feelings for OM he (stbxH) was very hurt. <P>In other words it was okay for him to have a PA but not okay for me to have an EA. <BR>Does this mean that his EA's were not okay too? [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>I ended my EA because I knew that I had to deal with my marriage before I could commit to anyone else. When I started my EA stbxH and I had been seperated so long that it was just a matter of doing the paperwork. I truly believe that the only thing that I hurt was his pride, he wanted me to grieve over him for a few more years.<P>We are still dealing with his 2nd OW since we all work in the same department. <P>At times I would have felt better if my H had admitted feelings for the 2nd OW, because it's hard to think he would just use someone like that. I probably wouldn't feel this way if I didn't have to see her grief everyday. <P>Sorry to ramble on about this. [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]

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weep Offline OP
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A Stronger Me's reply seems to confirm what I feel about most WS - that the WS knows that their better [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com] half is the steadfast and faithful type and would never do the dirty on them. That makes them secure in the feeling that there may be little revenge-affairs because they do expect us to GRIEVE over them and their pitiful affairs. They can never imagine us having the affairs and I doubt they can overcome the pain if they were the ones who were betrayed the first time.<P>I asked my WS whether he would forgive and start afresh if I were the one who was unfaithful. His reply many times was "I know you will never be unfaithful." I demanded an answer and not a compliment and he said "I will be very hurt but I will forgive and forget." [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com] Do I believe?<P>Some time later, I told him that one day I will pay him back for his ultimate betrayal, and he went "how can you be unfaithful! Are you really going to be unfaithful?!". I shouted back "I will tell you before I have an affair and it will be with someone so much better than your whore!". Really, for the life of me, the WS will not be able to stomach the kind of marital vows abuse that we face. <P>In order to reduce his inflated ego of being HE-MAN, causing two women to grieve (and one who obsess) over him, I told him that my pride was hurt more than anything else. The love that is gone can be rechannelled to my baby. I told him to get out to scr*w every thing with a *****a because after the one A, the rest are just statitics - all it takes is one OP to change the marriage equation.<P>Sorry I imposed on my own thread. [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>

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