His Lips Unzipped: “Is He Having an Affair?”
By Martin Brown
I’ve been in an exclusive relationship with my boyfriend for 3 months. We’ve been spending the majority of our weekends together and have gotten pretty close until last week. We hadn’t spoken much during the week and when we did, he seemed distracted and made no mention of getting together over the weekend. It’s almost a week since we’ve spoken last. What do you make of this? Seriously, could he be having an affair?
—Bewildered in NJ
There are a variety of possible answers that run the gamut from he’s gone cold on the relationship to he’s just had a bad week at the office. Those, of course, are not the only possible reasons.
As to whether he’s having an affair, I’m guessing that’s a long shot for the simple reason that infidelity comes with lies. From what you describe, he’s MIA, but that doesn’t mean that your relationship is DOA.
No doubt about it, you can run through a hundred different scenarios, and none of them will give you an answer that is absolutely satisfying. Honestly, no approach is better than picking up the phone and calling.
When you get him on the phone, don’t give a long and hesitant preamble as to why you’re calling, and don’t be defensive. Simply say: “We haven’t connected during the last week, and I wanted to check in and see how you’re doing.”
No pressure, no recrimination, just a straight-forward question.
Women tend to over think relationships, while men pay too little attention to the proper care and feeding of a relationship. You’re probably wondering if his interests have gone to another woman, but with men it’s just as likely that he’s in a down mood because he’s had a rough couple of weeks at work, and he’s not in the mood to talk about his issues.
As a general rule, women communicate at times when men go silent. Let him know that you’re available, ready and willing to listen. If he has any genuine interest in the relationship he’ll resurface and want to communicate as well. Don’t crowd him, but let him know that you are there and happy to hear about what’s going on in his life.
Any relationship is as successful as two people want it to be. I hope for your sake that he hasn’t decided to move on without telling you, but if that is the case you’re better off knowing sooner than later. It’s like the advice we got as kids not to take off the bandage an inch at a time. Instead, gather yourself together, remain cool, calm and collected and ask just in the way I suggested.
In all your intimate relationships you always have to assume the position that it’s better to know sooner than later. If this is not the relationship that you had hoped it was going to be, have a good cry, process your feelings, and then go out with the girls on Friday night. If indeed this guy was Mr. Wrong, you’re that much closer to meeting Mr. Right if you leave him behind, both physically and emotionally.
And, in the end if it was just a bad week at the office, ask now, find out, and move forward.
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(c)2008 His Lips Unzipped, By Martin Brown. Marin is co-author, along with his wife, Josie, of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Finding Mr. Right [September 2009].