The chemistry was obvious, but nothing ever “happened.” Or did it? Gail Saltz, MD, associate professor of psychiatry at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell School of Medicine, says “probably.” “Many of these emotional affairs do move into a sexual affair,” Saltz says.
They made a beeline for each other every morning, and their chats became more and more personal. “If they don’t, it’s easy enough to say to yourself that you’re not doing anything wrong.” The problem, she says, is the attachment to this other person impacts the marriage.
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“It makes them feel good to feel understood, to feel desired. You go home and have your vegetables, and you go to work and you have candy.” For some spouses -- more often women, Saltz says -- learning of an emotional affair can be worse than discovering sexual infidelity.
“Everybody understands a sexual act need not necessarily contain affection or intimacy. Whereas the emotional affair feels like it’s much more about being connected, about loving or liking.” These affairs can be hard to stop, Saltz says.
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