10 Unexpected Ways Affairs Begin

10 Unexpected Ways Affairs Begin

You would be hard pressed to name something that can cause more devastation in marriage than an affair. Caught, or finally confessing an affair, are so often those who once declared their undying love and fidelity, “I would never under any circumstances cheat on my beloved.” God is clear, “You shall not commit adultery.” (Exodus 20:14 NIV) It is one of the 10 commandments, so the line separating where Christians and the rest of the world stands should be clear, right? Wrong.The number of broken covenants left in the wake of infidelity is a terrifying warning to all. We must stay guarded; the enemy knows how to prey on our unrequited romantic fantasies and the desires of our flesh. He will scheme and manipulate to get us to look at the co-worker, neighbor, or even a friend’s spouse a little longer, in a slightly different light. These are some of the circumstances where people are more likely to drop their guard, and entertain the seductive whispers of temptation, pressing them to break vows they thought would stand for life.

  • 1. Bible Study

    Think you are immune to an affair just because you are at a church event? Think again. People can often bond over deep conversation, shared beliefs, and the intimacy of prayer. It is totally reasonable to have shared discussion, and engage in group prayer, but avoid situations that would bring you closer to a person of the opposite sex; especially, if you find yourself attracted to someone in particular. If you find yourself waiting for that one person to arrive, feeling a sudden anxiousness and excitement when they do, and listening more attentively to their every word, get some accountably and consider telling your spouse as soon as possible.

  • 2. Life Change

    When we start new jobs, we meet new coworkers. When we move to a new city we have new neighbors. When change happens opportunity presents itself, and often we have heightened emotions because we are in the midst of transition. We want to be friendly, and should show kindness, but as we build new relationships we also do what we can to also include our spouse in the building. Relationships with the new people in our circles of influence need not be avoided they just need to grow from a foundation that allows no room for seeds of betrayal to be planted. 

  • 3. When Grieving

    It is common wisdom to not to make life changing decisions when in the midst of mourning. The wisdom is solid, but can be easily forgotten, and it is a short walk from life-changing to life-destroying. When we are experiencing the heart-sickness of loss, we are more likely to cast aside considering the consequences that our decisions carry, for just a brief moment that helps us forget the pervasive pain. Instead of relieving the pain, it’s ultimately multiplied.

  • 4. Checking Up on Your Old Beau

    This type of affair has skyrocketed with the emergence of social media. While in the days before the internet people may have simply wondered what was going on with someone who had once occupied their days, and held their heart. It is now easier, and riskier than ever to find out. Explore your own motivations for looking at their Facebook, Instagram, or even Pinterest, and you will find they are unlikely to be God-given motivations. Snapchat – don’t even consider it. Even if you convince yourself you are just checking, so you can pray for them — don’t. You can shoot up a prayer for God to draw them near to Him and leave it at that. God knows more about them than the internet, and has far greater power to do something good about their circumstances.

  • 5. With Your Best Friend’s Husband

    Of course you wouldn’t; but unfortunately, you could be tempted. Again, this comes down to what lines of intimacy are being crossed: are you often alone? Has joking turned to flirting concealed just beneath the guise of friendship? Are you constantly thinking about how you are not that friend? Frequently meditating on how you could never, is another way of allowing the fantasy to play on repeat, and the more your thoughts circle around the idea — the closer you get to committing it. 

  • 6. Child-Centric Events

    If you have ever sat on the sidelines of a kindergarten soccer game, you know that there is a lot of time for friendly conversation. The tykes are cute, but often no one is keeping score and their athletic ventures aren’t always engaging. This naturally leads to community building and parent camaraderie, but if you find yourself week after week looking forward to seeing a certain other parent, especially if they are part of the same team, and your spouse cannot be at those games/play dates/bus stop – “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.” - 1 Corinthians 16:13

  • 7. When You have Suspicions Your Spouse is Cheating

    Are you wondering if you are being cheated on? If so, you may be more likely to have an affair yourself. People can self-destruct when they are living in anticipation of pain and heartbreak. Sometimes they even strike first in a foolish attempt to self-preserve and lessen the emotional damage to themselves. If you are suspicious — find the truth, don’t act out of unfounded paranoia.

  • 8. You or Your Spouse is Struggling with Porn

    This one comes at people sideways. A husband is dealing with his own sin, struggling to rid himself of an addiction. The wife tries to be supportive but finds herself suddenly dealing with her own longings for romance, and a man who adores only her. If you find yourself in this position, seek out biblical counseling and support within your church.

    We also have to leave behind the idea that pornography addiction is a man’s game. More and more women are finding themselves drawn to images, storylines, and easily accessible websites that not only sell sex but show it. Many people convince themselves porn is harmless and that it can even help enhance your sex life. Let me say this clearly: PORN WILL POISON YOUR MARRIAGE. It will grieve the Holy Spirit, and make you increasingly spiritually numb. It will cause intimacy to decay, draw your eyes from Jesus, and your husband , and steepen the slide into sexual sin. 

  • 9. With Someone of the Same Sex

    When people have been wounded or are longing for intimacy it isn’t always someone of the opposite sex that begins to arouse fallen desires. With romantic story lines of same sex couples prevalent in theaters, books, and sitcoms.  The imagination does not have to search far to begin writing its own, and evil is happy to come alongside to wreak destruction.  Some couples will even consider bringing in a third person to spice up their sex life. This never goes well. An affair with a person of the same sex is the same as one of the opposite. It still counts as cheating and will still destroy.

  • 10. Thoughts: Your Brain Will Always Go There Before your Body Does

    One commonality among all acts of adultery is that at some point an individual gives themselves permission to act. They let their mind wander too far and put their body in places where opportunity becomes more likely. It always begins in the mind, but the mind, heart, soul and body must be guarded. The best way to do this is first with submission to Jesus.

    “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”- James 4:7

    This is the verse that gives you all the wisdom you need for avoiding an affair. If you RESIST you will always be better off, but people don’t always listen to that first conviction and allow themselves to linger in dangerous spaces. Get out now. Resist!!!