The 6 Common Kinds of Affairs

There really is only one “kind” of affair.   All affairs involve disloyal spouses disobeying God.  Exodus 20:14 is very clear “You shall not commit adultery,” and thus if we do commit adultery, we are disobeying.   All affairs involve people who have stumbled somewhere and don’t have a godly marriage.  Sometimes it’s only one spouse that has messed up, but more-often-than-not, both parties have failed to follow God’s plan for a marriage that mirrors His relationship with His Bride, the Church.  That means that although affairs occur for numerous reasons and in myriad ways…really there is just one type, and it’s pretty rough to hear: it’s the sinful affair!   To save your marriage and recover after an affair, what REALLY needs to happen is for both spouses to recognize that ” …all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23) and as a response, both spouses should “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord” (Acts 3:19).   If you’re asking: “… what must I do to be saved?’ let me reply: “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved —you and your household.”  (Acts 16:30-31).   The transformative power of God in those who are His children is the only thing that can TRULY save a marriage, so to have a deep, real recovery where both partners change, you need to be a Christian.

All that being said, there are some fairly common reasons that people give for having their affair, and identifying the type of affair may help you figure out how to help your marriage and what areas you should address first.  So let’s take a look at the most common kinds of affairs

The “Soulmates” Affair — This is probably the most common kind of affair.  The Disloyal Spouse and the Other Person found they had much in common — a similar outlook on life, compatibility, completeness: emotionally, sexually, intellectually, spiritually. This affair is definitely an Emotional Affair, and sometimes they stop there and don’t go any further.

The Mid-marriage/Mid-life Affair — This kind of affair is very, VERY common!  In this type of affair, the couple has been married for 7-10 years and they have become a little bit complacent and/or they are reaching certain milestone ages (such as menopause).  This is a somewhat typical affair where the older man buys a corvette and gets a 25yo mistress…or the more mature woman starts wearing mini-skirts, going to raves, and gets a tattoo.   This affair is usually a Physical Affair, but not due to connecting with the Other Person–it’s mostly just to prove he’s still a stud, or she’s still a vixen.

The “Personal Issues” affair — This affair is actually pretty common, but it’s fairly hard to describe.  I, personally, call it the “Time Bomb” affair, because inside the Disloyal Spouse there is some trauma or event that affected them SO PROFOUNDLY that when they hit a reminder of that event, their personal issues engage and they just completely change!  Maybe it’s when they hit the same age as the age at which their dad died…or maybe it’s the death of a parent or sibling.  This affair could be an Emotional Affair and/or a Physical Affair.

The Denial Affair — This affair is also pretty common but not quite as common as the previous type.  In this affair, one party may be available and the other is not…and both parties continue to deny that it IS an affair, even though it clearly has gone beyond the bounds of appropriate behavior.   A typical example of this affair would be a brother and married sister who think it’s “not an affair” to flirt and tease erotically because being siblings is “safe.”

The Lust Affair — This affair is just like it sounds.  The Disloyal has no desire to leave their spouse but succumbs to their sexual desire for someone else.  It’s mostly about sex.  It can feel really intense and passionate, but it’s also the quickest to flame out.  This affair is usually all Physical Affair with very little Emotional Affair connection.

The Exit/Revenge Affair — This affair is actually very common also but it ist an affair that RARELY results in saving the marriage.  This affair is the result of deep anger and resentment, feeling unaffirmed and disregarded, or being abused.  Often this is a marriage that is dead already and the Disloyal doesn’t have the courage to end it.  They have no feelings for their spouse other than rage, want to get away from their spouse, and choose to have an affair as one final act to kill the marriage.

Want to find out more about each kind of affair?  Want to hear what the Disloyals typically say?  How they probably met their Affair Partner?  And what you can do to most effectively combat this kind of affair?    Read our new article: “The Six Common Kinds of Affairs…in depth” !

6 thoughts on “The 6 Common Kinds of Affairs

  1. My wife had an affair and a baby and was pregnant again she had to abortions before and I am the one suffering.she took the kids put a restraining order against me and lives with her new boyfriend while I can’t ever see my kids or file divorce but she gets the good life.I have no more faith in him.i have been through this tiwce but I don’t believe god cares about marriage or me anymore.I have kepted alone and my heart is completely gone 18yrs gone over night.haven’t seen or heard from anyone and now I’m just going to leave god alone.hw hasn’t changed anything.almost been a year and I am starting to fall apart even more.

  2. Im so sorry your hurting so bad. I know what you are going through. My first bit of advice is that God should be you number one go to person. He does love you. Pray pray pray. Take all your troubles to God and relinquish ownership. God will handle it. He promises that he will. Keep the faith.
    My story is rather long but i will give the short
    Version the best I can. 4 yrs ago my husband had an emotional affair. I caught them but i was told it was a bad decision and it wont happen again. They continued. 2 yrs later i caught them. My husband couldnt make up his mind and asked for time. I gave it to him. It was very painful. And he continued to go out with her. I got to the point I was done. I prayed and prayed then one day God spoke to me and said you can not leave him you have to save him. I was shocked and said I cant save him. God said no you cant alone but with me guiding you then you can. I was so upset I wanted out but im told I have to save him. Long story short 2 years later I am still married and living with my husband. I pray for him every day and I continue to get messages from God. He tell me as I get impatient be still…. it will happen in Gods time. Be patient. Keep your eyes on the Lord.
    I have been doing that for 2 yrs now since I found out and my husband is still seeing her im going to tell you I have had the most peace in my life that i ever have had. My husband says he doesnt know whats the matter with him. He says he loves me and there is something very wrong with him. His relationship with the OW is falling apart. She has been a habitual cheater and this is my husbands first affair. He says he askes himself everyday what has he gotten himself into. I believe God is working on him. And I am claiming my husband and marriage in the name of Jesus Christ. Im not saying this is easy by any means but . Once you trust in God you can relinquish all your problems to the Lord. My take on this is…this sin is not against me it is against God and He will take care of it. I truly believe that. My story is not over but I believe it will be a new beginning for our marriage. I have a glorious relationship with the Lord because of this path. Btw we have been married for 41 yrs. God bless you on your journey no matter where it takes you. Trust in the Lord and you will receive many blessings.

  3. Can you pray for my marriage i cheated on my wife and feel empty now i need the lord to shone a light on my marriage i dont like this feeling and love my wife i never want to do it again haven’t been with that person in a year and dont want too i pray every day and night to asking for forgiveness and help my marriage can you pray for me and thank you for listen to my problem

    1. Joe –

      Your marriage is your responsibility. It is your job as husband to create a marriage in which God’s love shines through. That requires spiritual leadership, and a commitment to leading a life that pleases God. That sort of life is found through a life of prayer coupled with a life of studying God’s word and surrounding yourself and your family with fellow believers.

      Notice that you cannot just sit back and pray for God to do the work for you. God doesn’t work that way, and prayer doesn’t work that way. Prayer keeps us in tune with God, keeps our focus on God, enabling us to go forth and do right. It is never enough to simply pray and wish for the best.

      Be a man worth being married to. Love your wife as Christ loves the Church. The love required in a marriage is not the emotion of affection you feel about your wife, nor is it about passion. It is about doing and being. You say you love your wife: make sure this is a true statement! Avoid thinking that the feelings you hav for her equate to what the Bible says about love. Over time your wife will know the difference!

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