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A broken bond

sex-and-relationships Updated: Aug 22, 2013 11:32 IST
Dr Brahmbhatt
Dr Brahmbhatt
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

An extra-marital affair can never be hidden. It has a way of coming out in the open. But it’s all the more surprising that nowadays people don’t mind flaunting such clandestine affairs. Men have often been blamed for straying out of wedlock and it’s not all that wrong. Reports reveal that of every 100 men, 30 were involved in extra-marital affairs, some of them with married women.

It’s a foregone conclusion that married men have extra-marital affairs to increase their self-esteem, feel younger and add that much needed zing to their sex lives. For them, a desire for a new relationship is similar to owning a new cell phone model.

Respecting in-laws A 37-year-old woman once came to me for counselling. She was beautiful and married to a 42-year-old, rich and good-looking man. He was having an affair with his secretary - a 29-year-old, average looking married woman. The affair lasted for four years.

The secretary even had a baby and the wife was paranoid as everyone in office insisted that the child resembled her husband. She was aware of the fact that the two had clandestine meetings in hotel rooms.

The couple had three children aged 16, 12 and nine. Things seemed hunky dory between the two on the surface. They holidayed abroad and even had a good sex life. I wondered what prompted the husband to cheat on his wife.

A little probing, and I discovered that there were problems between them right from day one. He had a widowed mother who lived with them. His wife was very rude to her and even had fights with her.

Women hold the key Problems between the couple increased after they had their second child. The wife got more involved with the kids and was too tired to have sex with him. Anyway, women don’t have sex with their husbands during pregnancy.

Probably it’s stress, fatigue or the fear of getting pregnant again, but they lose interest in sex after childbirth. Most of the times, the husbands feel left out and drift away. Most women also stop caring about their looks and figure.

They are secure in the knowledge that the husbands have no choice but to just hang on to them. Women should remember that men are put off with this and look for sex outside marriage.

Physical proximity between the couple is important. The couple has to keep working at the marriage all the time. It’s as if the woman holds the steering wheel in her hands.

Shoulder to cry on My counseling sessions with married women for 27 years show me that women will never tolerate their husbands’ emotional involvements with other women..but will turn a blind eye to the husbands one-night stands or pure sexual relationships.

Over the years, I’ve also seen that married men usually go for younger women. But there are instances where they are attracted to older women.

Coming back to the couple, it was probably the man’s way of punishing his wife for her cruelty towards his mother. Their day started with a fight. Probably, he found the secretary very caring, unlike his wife.

I’m not aware if the secretary too was facing problems in her marriage. Probably she did, and the two felt drawn towards each other to discuss their personal problems leading to a sexual relationship.