Sep 222012
 

These tips on how to stop thinking about the other woman are inspired by a reader’s question. He wants to get to a place where he no longer feels tempted to talk to the other woman, call the other woman, and be with the other woman.

thinking about other womanGetting Past the Affair: A Program to Help You Cope, Heal, and Move On – Together or Apart by Douglas K. Snyder, Donald H. Baucom, and Kristina Coop Gordon is a valuable book for individuals or couples recovering from an affair.

My suggestions below on how to stop thinking about the other woman are only one piece of the puzzle. Moving on after infidelity – forgiving after an affair – is a long, long process for everyone. Healing is possible, but it takes time.

Here’s the question about getting over an affair that I received from a reader. He said: I recently confessed to my wife that I had been cheating for nearly a year. This affair took place while I was away from home on business. The affair was not just physical, we became emotionally involved. I am not attempting to justify my actions. They are beyond justification. Now, my wife and I are both seeking help. We are working very hard to get back to one another and in some ways our relationship is at its most healthy. I am, however, struggling. There are days where I miss the other woman and I have repeatedly cut contact with her only to get in touch with her again. My decision about how to conduct myself in this situation has been made but my resolve is not where it needs to be. I would like to save my marriage and be the man and husband I know I can be. My wife is making changes regarding how she approached our marriage before. I’d like to make changes into what was bad in me that allowed me to do something this hurtful. Is there any insight you would be willing to give that would help me get to a place where I no longer feel the desire or temptation to speak to this woman?





How to Stop Thinking About the Other Woman

Learn the paradox of change. “As soon as you say, ‘I want to change’ or make a program, a counter-force is created that prevents you from change. Changes are taking place by themselves. If you go deeper into what you are, if you accept what is there, then a change automatically occurs by itself. This is the paradox of change.” Frederick S. Perls.

If you keep berating yourself for thinking about the other woman, then you’ll keep thinking about the other woman. That which you resist, persists. You’re feeding the beast by trying not to think about her. And, she’s no doubt becoming more attractive and alluring in your mind because you can’t have her.

Getting to the place where you no longer feel desire for the other woman depends on your personality. We’ve all struggled to give up some sort of temptation, but what really works depends on who we are. For instance, I struggled with bulimia for years – and I didn’t quit because I forced myself not to think about food. I quit because I got emotionally and spiritually healthy.

Relationship Help

Do you regret the break up? Get Your Ex Back

Want to stop the separation or divorce? Save Your Marriage

Wondering how to make a man fall in love with you? Captivate Him So He'll Never Want to Leave

Gaining control over your temptations is a process that takes time, whether you’re giving up the other woman, cigarettes, or hot fudge sundaes. That’s why Mark Twain said, “Quitting is easy – I’ve done it hundreds of times.”

Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment may help you stop thinking about the other woman, because it’s about being in the moment – not being dragged down by the past or consumed with anxieties about the future. I think one of the best ways to overcome temptation is to be present in this very moment. Acknowledge your desire, and acknowledge your desire to stay married. Be present with those contradictory thoughts.

It may sound like a lot of fluff, but it sounds like you have nothing to lose! I encourage you to read The Power of Now a couple of times, and take his suggestions.

It’s also important to become aware of why you cheated on your wife – it’s not because something was “bad” in you. Read Why Do People Cheat in Relationships? for insight into your own choices. Something was missing in your marriage, and you found it elsewhere. You’re not a bad or evil man; you were trying to meet your needs. Now, you need to meet your needs within your marriage.

How to Stop Thinking About the Other Woman

“How to Stop Thinking About the Other Woman”

Other ways to stop thinking about the other woman:

  • Talk to a counselor for a session or two, and explore different ways to stop thinking about the other woman.
  • Make a list of reasons you want to save your marriage, and pull out that list whenever your thoughts wander to the woman you had the affair with.
  • Ask your wife to write down how the affair affected her, and carry around that piece of paper with you. Read it when you feel tempted (maybe you’ll only need to think about it! That may be enough to snuff out those thoughts of the other woman).
  • Consider making lifestyle changes that take you out of the affair. For example, avoid business trips for the next couple of years. Find a different job, or a different employer. Remove yourself from the routine may help.

If you need more practical tips, read Do You Think About Your Ex All the Time? 6 Ways to Stop Obsessing. It’s been one of my most popular articles for a long time – you’re not alone! – and it might be effective for husband who can’t stop thinking about the other woman.

laurie pawlik kienlenI'm Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen - bookworm, travel bug, flute player, writer, blogger, warrior princess. :-) My husband and I live in Vancouver, Canada with our cat and dogs.

Are you happy? My Grade 10 Social Studies teacher always asked me that. And I am happy, despite a hard childhood (schizophrenic mom, no dad, foster homes), infertility, an eating disorder, and a chronic illness. The source of my peace and joy is God; I'm a Christian. Where do you find peace?

I welcome your big and little comments below, about big or little things. I can't give you advice, but writing can give you clarity and insight.

In peace and passion...Laurie

  6 Responses to “How to Stop Thinking About the Other Woman”

  1. My apologies for missing your comments! Looking back, I realize I was going back to school in Sept 2012, to get my MSW at UBC. I must have been overwhelmed with classes and assignments, and unable to keep up with my comments here on Love and Relationships.

    I trust you have worked through your issue, and are facing a whole new life now. Still, I do apologize.

    Blessings,
    Laurie

  2. Our very good friends have been married for 10 years. They appeared to have what seems “The Perfect Marriage”. They never argue or fight, and always seemed happy. They have no children and are 35 years of age. This past August, Brad started an affair with a co-worker. He told his wife (Lola)about it. She was shocked, sad, mad and everything else. She does not want to separate from him. She wants the marriage to work. He cannot stop obsessing over the other woman and thinks he is in love with her. This girl is not his type whatsoever, and all of his friends think he is making a huge mistake. The affair is still going on this day, but he has tried to breakaway from her, but cannot. He cannot even go a day without texting her. It is almost as if he is brainwashed. He has not made efforts to file for divorce, or separate from his wife, which tells us that he is utterly confused and very torn. He is a mess. They went to a counselor 4 times, but it didn’t seem to do anything as the girlfriend will not leave him alone, and vice versa. He stays with us sometimes, he has broke down and cried, just balled. He is truly in a state of depression, anxiety, and literally obsessed with this other woman he barely even knows. His wife is hanging in the balance, but is wearing very thin, she wants her husband back. Most would have ended the marriage months ago. Any thoughts?

    -Extremely concerned friends.

  3. My husband had an affair with an ex. I found out 3months ago. She has just given birth to their child. I so not know how to deal with the situation because he says he has to keep in contact with her. We are in therapy but he is not proactive in trying to make amends. He behaves as though he is the victim because our marriage was in a sorry state to begin with. I feel I have over invested emotionally in our marriage because even though he says he loves me he doesn’t consider how devastated I am by his affair. Is it fair on him to give him an ultimatum because I am not able to continue sharing my life with him if he maintains any kind of relationship with her and this child.

  4. Laurie,

    Thank you, so much, for this. I am going to be seeing a therapist once a week to help me deal with my own personal struggles regarding my infidelity and marriage. My wife and I will be going to therapy together, a different therapist (of course), to work on the difficulties in our marriage that we face as a pair.

    A lot of the things you said rang true with my own interpretation of things. And, while I don’t know you, the support has lifted my spirits today.

    I really liked your idea of carrying around that slip of paper.

    Thank you, again, for taking the time to be active on this matter. It makes more of a difference than you might suspect and given the medium you undoubtably don’t get to feel the results of your attention.

  5. Hi Jill,

    It makes me sad that your boyfriend says he’s “past the age of dreaming.” What’s up with that?? Even 80 and 90 year olds still have dreams — and their dreams keep them young, healthy, vibrant, and healthy.

    I wrote this for you:

    My Boyfriend Isn’t Ambitious – Will He Drag Me Down?

    I hope it helps, and welcome your thoughts.

    Blessings,
    Laurie

    PS Readers, if you have questions on how to stop thinking about the other woman after you had an affair, you’re welcome to comment here. We’re on a bit of a tangent, but that’s okay :-)

  6. I am deeply in love and in a relationship with a man who is ten years older than me. Despite the age difference, we have a great time and lots of fun. My biggest problem with him is that I’m in my 20’s and life is just starting for me, but he has NO goals, NO ambitions, and NO passion. I appreciate that he is a hard worker, but he is constantly stuck in dead end jobs at minimum wage. He also has a culinary degree, but chooses to work small construction jobs here and there to make ends meet. I don’t understand him! He says he is past the age of dreaming and now he just wants to pay the bill. Finishing college and having a career along with a family is my number one priority and something I am working hard for. Is his lack of passion for life going to drag me down? I understand paying the bills is important, but following your dreams and personal journey (I feel) is waaaay more important.

 Leave a Reply

(required)

(required)