Marriage Missions International

How To Stop Your Wandering Eye: Every Man’s Battle

What do you do if you find someone attractive—other than your spouse?

If you find someone attractive, your first line of defense is a proper mind-set, which is this: This attraction threatens everything I hold dear.

It may not appear threatening early in the attraction, when everything seems innocent. Remember, though, that attractions grow quickly and can destroy your marriage. Even if your marriage manages to survive, at the very least the lurking will weaken the foundation of your marriage and rob your wife of your full captivation.

Your second line of defense is to declare, I have no right to think these things. State this to yourself clearly, decisively, and often. You don’t even know this woman; who are you to be attracted to her? Didn’t your Master give you your wife?

The third line of defense is to heighten your alert. What do you normally do when you feel threatened? You take off your jacket and breathe deeply. You ready yourself for what’s coming.

Suppose you’re a bouncer at a dance club, checking I.D.s and tickets, joking with the customers. One night, five men in black leather loudly roar up on motorcycle, looking surly and arrogant. Would you relax and back away from the door? Not on your life. Without hesitation, you’d step up to the door and stand erect, ready to confront the threat.

Consider the old Star Trek television series. What did Captain Kirk do when danger approached? He cried out: Red alert! Shields up!

With your mind-set transformed, you won’t let her near the corral. The attraction will begin to starve, and she’ll drift back toward the horizon. How can you make sure this will happen?

BOUNCE YOUR EYES. You saw her passing your corral, and you were physically attracted to her. Starve this attraction by bouncing your eyes (which means to “build a reflex action by training your eyes to immediately bounce away from the sexual, like the jerk of your hand away from the hot stove”). Don’t dwell on her beauty by stealing glances. Do this with zeal.

AVOID HER. Sometimes this isn’t possible, but do it when you can. If she works with you, and the two of you are assigned to the same project, don’t ask her to eat lunch with you or offer her a ride home. Avoid opportunities that create positive experiences with her until the attraction phase dies. If she asks you to do something with her, excuse yourself.

WHEN YOU’RE IN HER COMPANY, PLAY THE DWEEB. Our hero, Dweebman, steps into a nearby public rest room and emerges as the polyester-clad enemy of all things flirtatious and hip. Dull, mild-mannered Dweebman—pocket protector shielding his heart and hair slightly askew—wages his quiet, thankless war of boring interchange. Our once-threatening Amazon withdraws to undefended sectors, leaving Dweebman victorious again in his never-ending good fight to stave off the hip and the impure in his galactic empire!

Okay, there’s not that much glory in playing the dweeb. There’ll be no comic-book deals no endorsement deals, no 20/20 interviews with Barbara Walters, but you’ll be a hero to your wife and kids.

A dweeb is the opposite of a player. In relationships, players send and receive social signals smoothly. Dweebs do not. When a player wants to send attraction signals, there are certain things he’ll do. He’ll flirt. He’ll banter. He’ll smile with a knowing look. He’ll talk about hip things. In short, he’ll be cool. You were a player at one time. You knew how to feed attractions. You spent your whole adolescence learning how.

As a married man, however, a little social suicide is very much in order. Always play the dweeb. Players flirt… learn to un-flirt. Players banter… learn to un-banter. If a woman smiles with a knowing look, learn to smile with a slightly confused look, to un-smile. If she talks about things that are hip, talk about things are un-hip to her, like your wife and kids. She’ll find you pleasant enough but rather bland and uninteresting. Perfect.

Sometimes a woman’s attractiveness to you will be mental rather than physical. This is common in work environments as you work with women on projects that interest you both. In business it’s common to spend more hours per day with female coworkers than with your wife. You talk with them about common goals and achieving success, while all you and your wife talk about are the kids’ discipline problems, who’s going to change the dirty diapers, and bills, bills, bills.

As with physically attractive women, you must understand that if your shields aren’t up, and if you don’t recognize the threat to your marriage, you’re flirting with danger.

To summarize: If you’re attracted to a woman, it doesn’t mean you may never again have any sort of relationship or friendship with her. It only means you must enact your defense perimeters. Once you’ve starved the attractions and she’s a safe distance away, you can have a proper relationship, one that is honoring to your wife and to the Lord.

The above article can be found in the excellent book, Every Man’s Battle: Winning the War on Sexual Temptation One Victory at a Time (The Every Man Series) by Stephen Arterburn and Fred Stoeker, published by WaterBrook Press.

This book shares the stories of dozens who have escaped the trap of sexual immorality and presents a practical, detailed plan for any man who desires sexual purity—perfect for men who have fallen in the past, those who want to remain strong today, and all who want to overcome temptation in the future. We can’t recommend this book highly enough! It’s powerful!

You can also visit the web site that goes along with this book, Everymansbattle.com. They have some great articles on this web site that could minister to your needs in tremendous ways.

Share

Join the Discussion!

But please observe the following guidelines:

  • Try to be as positive as possible when you make a comment.
  • If there is name-calling, or profane language, it will be deleted.
  • The same goes with hurtful comments targeted at belittling others; we won't post them.
  • Recommendations for people to divorce will be edited out–that's a decision between them and God, not us.
  • If you have a criticism, please make it constructive.
  • Be mindful that this is an international ministry where cultural differences need to be considered.
  • Please honor the fact this is a Christ-centered web site.
We review all comments before posting them to reduce spam and offensive content.


two + = 6

Comments

27 Responses to “How To Stop Your Wandering Eye: Every Man’s Battle”
  1. Pamela says:

    (SOUTH AFRICA) This is a wonderful website. A friend of mine sent me the link today and I must say, this is exactly what I was looking for. Marriage is no child’s play. In the years that I have been married, it has not been easy. I am not very happy in my marriage. I feel that I am second best. My husband is a cheater of all kinds –both physically and emotionally. He always puts himself first before the needs of the family and is not reliable.

    Ask me, why am I putting up with all this nonsense? The answer is, I don’t know. Could someone help me with suggestions for the way forward. Every time I pray to God about my husband and I ask God to show me in some manner if he is the right man for me, something worse than before happens. Even though I can see the sign, because of denial, I always think that perhaps that was not a sign. I convince myself that he is going to change.

    He recently got a job outside of the country and accepted the offer without my approval saying that he is going to make more money for us. But when we were looking for a house, he says he can’t afford a big house as he has other responsibilities. This person sacrificed us for a better job, but has nothing to show for it.

    To make it worse my mother always sides with him. I don’t have a good relationship with my mother anymore because of this. She seems to think all women have to go through this. It happens and I should keep quiet. Some days are better than others, but I know that deep down I am bruised, hurt and feel unloved. What is the best way of sorting this out? Should I just walk away? Even if I wanted us to go for counselling. Where is he to commit to that? Guys, I need your suggestions. I know the final decision lies with me, but it would be helpful to hear your views, ideas and suggestions. Thanks.

    • Joy says:

      (USA) Pamela, I feel your pain. My husband is very selfish, as well. We both have quick tempers and don’t want to be taken advantage of, although I feel like I’m the only one truly making sacrifices in our family. We have a 2 year old son and we both work a lot during the week. I can’t say he’s not a good father; he’s a great father, but a horrible husband.

      In relation to the article, he most definitely has a wandering eye. Not just that, he gets a fishhook in his eye whenever a somewhat attractive woman passes by. It’s embarrassing for me to stand next to him while he’s gawking at other women. And to make it worse, he’s very attractive, so when he does flirt with other women no one ever turns away. However, I can’t seem to catch him looking at me twice even when we have sex. Since my pregnancy he’s been saying he’ll dedicate his time and energy to getting better jobs to give his son a good life. Well, when my son was 3 months, he decided to take a acting course and told me to move to my parent’s place for a while with my son so he can concentrate. What was suppose to be 2 weeks turned into 3+ months, and for over a month of that time he didn’t even have the course but he was sitting around with his cousin and friends waiting for the course to start rather than getting a job.

      Ever since we first met and thru 2.5 years of marriage I’ve always paid for half of our expenses: bills/rent/baby needs. Even when I didn’t have a job and when I was pregnant I paid for my own entire pregnancy expenses. So after our 3 months separation, I started living with him again when I found a job, and paid for all 3 of us because he was still taking classes. He expected to make a better living for us through acting?? But then the argument would turn into my fault for not being supportive as a wife. Months later, when he wanted a car because he was sick of going to work (as a chef) by the train he asked me for the money for it. I paid a down payment before we ended up not getting the lease.

      2 years later, he decides he wants to keep pursuing acting and wants to save all his money then leave to his native country for 3 months to do a film then comeback for post production. And his offer is he will take his son with him and I can come or not come. It isn’t normal for someone to leave his spouse a quarter of a year or more and not even care whether she comes or not. Not to mention what am I suppose to do by myself here while he’s pursuing his projects. Just work and wait for them? If I do make the decision to quit my job to join him it doesn’t seem like he even cares whether I’m there or not other than someone to watch his son.

  2. Cindy says:

    (USA) Dear Pamela, I want you to know that I am praying as to what to write in response to the comment you’ve written above. But I need a little more clarity first. You say that your husband is a “cheater” both “physically and emotionally.” Are other women involved in this “cheating”? And is your husband hurting you through physical abuse, as well as hurting you emotionally? Your clarification on this will help, so I can respond to your letter in a more intelligent way.

    Please know that you are being prayed for and that many of us are saddened with you over your marital situation. We pray that God will give you wisdom and comfort and help.

  3. Pamela says:

    (SOUTH AFRICA) Hi Cindy, When I say cheating, I mean that there are other women involved. Actually it seems as if he has got a woman in every continent. I have found items of women’s clothing in his bags after he’s taken a trip, for instance. He gets phone calls at odd hours of the night and he never speaks fully. He always says he will call them back. Sometimes I can tell that he is speaking to women and when I confront him about it, he says they are his friends.

    How come I never get to meet these friends and how come he never converses with them when I’m there? One time I decided to look through his emails. I’m aware that this might be the invasion of privacy and perhaps not right, but I had to do what I had to do. I could see that he was spending so much time on emails and I really wanted to know what was going on. I found a series of emails sent to different women in South Africa and in other countries where he had gone on business. They were not innocent friendly emails, but rather he was thanking them for the wonderful weekends or nights and the responses from these women were that he was such a perfect and experienced gentleman.

    I was also not intelligent to do enough research about him before marrying him, because everywhere I go everybody remarks about how he used to like women and wonders whether he has changed. You can actually see sadness in the way people who know him look at me.

    Over and above this, every woman that he gets to befriend is always better than me. No matter what I do for him, it’s never good enough. When he left to work in the UK at the beginning of the year, he had just done a hand operation and could not do most things for himself. I took care of him in every way possible when he was still around, but he cannot stop being so grateful for what his brother’s wife has done for him since he arrived in the UK.

    Apparently she has been washing his clothes and he is so appreciative of the fact that she even washed his underpants. Oh she is such a woman and his brother is so lucky to have a wife so dedicated, someone who can juggle between work, school and family. To make matters worse, when he came back for the holidays he asked me what I would like for mother’s day. I told him that there is this perfume that I have been eying for some time and I really would like to have it. So we went to the shops. Guess what he did, out of the blue? He said to me, there is something that he keeps forgetting and it is the reason why we came to the shops in the first place. I kept quiet because I thought the reason why we had gone shopping was because he wanted to buy me perfume. Then he said oh yah, I had actually come to buy perfume for my brother’s wife because he has done so much for me. He told me that he didn’t go to the shops because of me.

    I was so hurt Cindy, and I started to doubt the woman that I am. I felt so unappreciated and I felt that perhaps I don’t deserve to be his wife. He deserves so much better. Everybody else is always better than me in every aspect yet he chose to marry me. But now I am not even half the woman that he would like me to be. Maybe I have not been a good wife, but I know that I have been a good mother as he is never around to parent the children with me. That I don’t doubt.

    Cindy, these are just some of the examples, there is so much more that I cannot put all of them in this email. He always makes nasty comments about how greedy women are and they will not hesitate to kill their husbands for money. I know this happens and it makes headlines in the news, but he makes me feel bad for being a woman because then if he is always trashing women, then what is he saying about me?

    What happens with me Cindy, is that after he says all these nasty things, I lose interest in him completely. He likes to say hurtful things, then expect me to have sex with him. Suddenly, he knows that I am a woman. Even if I don’t want it, he will force himself on me. Then he will pretend that everything is fine.

    I am just sick and tired of everything now. I am a born again Christian and he is not. I have not asked for help from anybody before and I am not sure who to ask. He does not get satisfied with the way I cook, with the way I keep the house, with the way I dress. He’s not satisfied with the way I raise our kids. I am certainly not a good wife. He does not want us to have a joint account as he does not want to consider my salary as something to fall back on. After all I may lose my job soon. (Mind you, I have never lost a job before and I earn quite a good salary.) It might be less than his, but it’s something. Now really, where am I good at?

    About the house issue, he keeps on changing. One minute, we can buy a house for R1.9 million rand, the next thing he says we can perhaps look at R1.7 mil. I go around like a mad person asking the sellers to drop the price to at least R1.7 as discussed. Once they agree, my husband will change his mind again and say we can’t afford it. The truth is that we can afford it. We have done an analysis of that and it should not be an issue at all. My bet is that I probably do not deserve such a house according to him and that is why he keeps on playing games with me.

    I am also worried about the children who need a stable home so that they do not keep changing schools. I just want to get my own house and forget about him, but before I do that, maybe there is something I could try to sort out the situation. I know that once I decide to get my own house without him, then there is no turning back and that will be the end of us. Thanks Cindy. I hope this is clearer than the previous message.

  4. Cindy Wright says:

    (USA) Dear Pamela, The scripture verses that came to mind as I read your letter are found in Psalm 61:1-2: “Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer. From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”

    Somehow, as difficult as all of this is for you — and it is. It’s HORRIBLE! It’s unjust, unfair, tragic, and downright senseless, for any human being to put another human being through such disrespectful circumstances. If your husband wanted to live a loose, single life, then he should never have married you. And he shouldn’t have had children with you. You may have been hurt in the beginning of your relationship, but you would have been spared from entering into a covenant relationship with a person who thinks little of breaking such a covenant, and breaking your heart.

    You ask for my advice. It is — that as difficult as this is for you, you should pray the prayer above and ask the Lord to show you how to live in a way that is higher than the storm you are going through. Pray and confess everything you can think of that you have done that is wrong in this relationship. Pray, asking God for mercy and grace and help. His disrespectful behavior is to his shame. You personally have no reason to hold your head in shame. You didn’t break covenant with your husband, he did. You are providing for your family, but he isn’t doing his part in this partnership. You are beautiful in God’s eyes, no matter what this man has tried to tell you otherwise.

    I’m sure that you are not without sin in this relationship. Sadly, we are all sinners, and we don’t do what we should all the time. But if you confess and repent, and ask for forgiveness for your part in all of this, God will forgive and will help you. He will not take away the consequences, but He will love you through them.

    There is an article we have posted in the Abuse section of this web site titled, “Living in Confidence Because of Who You Are.” I encourage you to read it. I pray it will help you to hold up your head to know that God values you and wants you to realize what He has done, and is doing in and for you. I pray it will give you confidence — not false confidence, or prideful confidence, but confidence in knowing that God values you so you can proceed in the future trusting Him for your future. Your future good is not out of His control.

    Also, I hesitate to say this, because some people could abuse what I am about to say, but I pray God speaks truth into their heart. Your husband is leaving your marriage bed and is sleeping with other women. He could bring home all kinds of diseases to you that could compromise your health and could even take away your life. And then where would your children be? You need to be wise in this.

    Unless God very definitely tells you otherwise, you should not have sexual relations with this man again because he is breaking covenant with you, and unless he stops, repents — changing his sinful behavior, he is not acting like your husband. He is acting like an alley cat that doesn’t belong in your sacred marriage bed. The decision is his, determined by his behavior. God knows what it is like to have those He loves break covenant with Him and to act in adulterous ways. He does not excuse it or bring this “fire” into His lap. Read Proverbs 5, Proverbs 6, and Proverbs 7. It will help you to see how God considers adultery.

    You say that you have a good job. Praise God! He has already provided. It sounds like you could obtain a house somehow because of your income. Praise God! He has already provided.

    I believe that you should pray for your own heart and then pray for your husband’s. I believe that you should pray for God to give you wisdom as to how and when to talk to your husband — doing it in the timing and the Spirit of the Lord. God will show you if you need to have others with you when you do this for your own protection. Don’t talk to him in a place or at a time that could compromise the situation further or endanger you or your children. God will give you wisdom.

    And in the right timing, I would tell him that you will not allow him to degrade you any longer. He has damaged your heart and your home and has hurt your children and this has to stop. If he wants to be man enough to let go of his cheating ways and become a man who lives in integrity and truth, he is welcome to live with you as husband and wife. But if he wants to cheat on you and disgrace your marriage, he needs to physically leave, because he has already emotionally and covenantlly already left. The decision is his. You are just following through with his actions.

    If he tries to lie, claiming innocence, and God reveals truth to your heart, don’t allow yourself to be taken in by the lies. Rely upon God to show you what to do.

    You say that once you “decide to get” your “own house without him, then there is no turning back and that will be the end” of you. I ask you to reconsider that statement. God can turn your husband’s heart around. Please give God the elbow-room to do so. We are all sinners, save by God’s grace. We don’t deserve anything and we don’t deserve a second chance. But by God’s example, it is always good to have an open mind as to what God can do, and be open to it.

    Do what God shows you to do as far as making a stable home for your children and raising them up to be good men who love God and treat women (and men) respectfully. But commit your husband to God and stay open to the possibility that given a miracle, your heart will be open to what God asks… IF He asks.

    This advice is some of the hardest I have ever given. I NEVER like to see marriages break up in any way. But sometimes you have to exhibit tough love, praying that by doing so, it may turn the offending spouse back into the direction of seeking God. Please pray about what I have written. Don’t take my advice if God tells you otherwise. But very prayerfully consider it. Please know that you are loved and prayed for by me and by others who are also reading this. May God abundantly bless and keep you and your children in His continual care!

  5. Cindy says:

    (USA) Pamela, I can’t tell you how much my heart goes out to you, as I am in a very similar situation. It’s so very difficult to know what to do when you have given your heart and soul to a marriage for so long and you can see your spouse looking elsewhere to have his needs fulfilled. That feeling of abandonment is the most lonely feeling in the world. The white hot anger I have felt towards the other women has been unbearable, but I can tell you that when I asked the Lord to take it from me, I did find relief.

    My husband, fortunately, has at least been repentant and has worked very hard this past few months after his most recent affair to really make everything "right" with both me and with God. It’s interesting, though, that this is a very familiar cycle that I have seen before, and when he starts to feel like it’s too hard to keep up all the things that are required to make a strong family and marriage, he tends to fall back into a status quo, which would then lead to an affair. So I must also make the difficult choice that you need to make, and decide if my children deserve a more stable environment and a home that has examples of men who respect women and hold them in high regard.

    I pray for you and for all of the women in this most excruciating place in their lives, and hope that God will lead us all to more stable and loving circumstances where we can truly start to love and trust ourselves again.

  6. James says:

    (UGANDA) I am joining this discussion for the first time. I hope that I an guided by God in the future debates.

  7. Sue says:

    (SA) Ladies, God knows I have been praying for weeks on end- please could you all join me in prayer and pray for my marriage and that GOD’s will shall be done- Amen

  8. Pamela says:

    (SOUTH AFRICA)  Hi ladies, I have not been to this website for some time now. My husband finally agreed to buy a house with me and we will be moving there sometime in September. He is still in the UK though, but is looking to come back home. Thank you all for praying for my marriage, I know you did and I am so grateful.

    All is not well yet as I have not forgiven him for all the things that he has done to me. I need your prayers so I can open up and allow the Holy Spirit to shower me with his love and open my heart to a new world of forgiveness and happiness.

    I think he has stopped cheating now, at least physically, because he seems to have a problem with his erection nowadays. He is 56 years of age. I think that is the only reason he is not cheating. His time is up. And guess what, when the penis does not erect he wants to blame it on me! What a shame!

    I have recently visited him in the UK and I did not see any sign that there was a woman in the apartment. Believe me, I would have seen if there was anything going on. He is not good at hiding the traces!

    I have one more concern though, sometimes I don’t know if I still love my husband or not. I feel like everything that concerns him is a struggle. I cannot get through to him on major issues that affect us without fighting and persisting. It is indeed tiring and sometimes I wonder if he really loves me. Why should I suffer all the time? I know I can be difficult too, but maybe we are incompatible.

    I have no interest in sex at all and the worrying part is that he sometimes sees it and interprets it as a sign that I am seeing someone else. He will then accuse me of all sorts of things. When he starts these things, I do not even defend myself because it’s no use.

    I have met a male friend at work and I think I am also starting to have feelings for him. I am praying that these feelings go away and I also ask God to bring my love for my husband back. I also pray that he stops his unhealthy ways and let us enjoy life. Even when we are together, we are always fighting because he likes to interfere in my responsibilities. I get irritated, I snap and we start fighting.

    For example, if I’m cooking, he will open my pots and try and add whatever he wants to add and it is just plain irritating for me. I normally just tell him to continue and I will stop. Then he will pick a fight with me saying that I always get irritated with him for nothing. What has he done and so on. If I do the washing and hang the clothes outside, he will come and change the way I have hung the clothes. I get really pissed off with such things. They are not major, but I just can’t take them. What can I do to let him know that I would like him to stop interfering? Cheers guys.

  9. Manpee says:

    (NIGERIA)  Great to run in to this page! God bless you all… My sister Pamela, the Lord is your strength, I have read all the comments and really want to encourage you to keep trusting God. If your husband can turn to be responsible enough to finally buy the house with you somehow that tells me God has not forgotten you.

    But please, you have survived the worst and may as well hold the key to further breakthroughs in this your marriage. I write as an average African man. Please open your heart and watch out for "POSITIVE" things from your husband. I am tempted to think that the saying "what you think is what you get/what you look for is what you see" really comes to play even in Christian marriages.

    Don’t make excuses on the negatives, please. I know you have been through a lot pain and heart break but I kind of think you were "happy" that he does not get erection anymore. Please, no matter what, never rejoice at your spouse’s problems even when it’s a consequential result of his wickedness. Show more compassion and dig a little deeper for more love towards him. You can still enjoy life together. It is not impossible with God.

    Also, when you say, his lack of erection might be the reason behind his changed heart so far, I think you should be careful as you might just be giving the glory of the Lord’s blessing to self or the devil. I have a feeling that he might have truly changed his heart even before his problem surfaced. In that case, it will rather kill him to perceive that you attribute his effort to his problems.

    My sister, this is your chance to consider Galatians 6:1-7. You sure need to be careful as the devil knows how to fix these things. In other words, try and make sure you are not the next reason to have a bad marriage, because now you are on the "winning" side, see? You now have feelings for a male friend at work place, please watch it.

    Finally, please let love rule your heart. It is up to you now to make efforts and consolidate your victories. You have survived the worst, so open up a little more to your husband. For me, I think your husband’s coming into your kitchen, though I cannot say for sure, his approach to opening your cooking pot, BUT if you ask me, those little things could well have been what got him "hooked" to those women. I am not making excuses for him, but I think you can loosen up and enjoy him a little more.

    Please my dear sister, if you cannot get anything from all I have said so far, get the fact that the law of "what you think is what you get or what you look for is what you see" applies in Christian marriages too.

    Please I speak from experience as am also laboring under the weight of negative expectations from my wife. That will be a discussion for another time. THE LORD IS YOUR STRENGTH…

  10. Meme says:

    (NIGERIA)  My dear sister Pamela, The strength of our risen Lord is sufficient for you. I have been longing to write you for a long time ago. I understand deeply what you are passing thru cos I am passing thru the same thing. How I wish God will come down in a fleshy form to come and rescue us! Pamela, no one will speak the language you will want to hear except Jesus.

    Please Pamela, if he has truly repented, he will no longer abuse you in those manners. You know the problem with these cheaters are their secrecy characteristics. They are too secretive, pretenders, and they are liars. Please, for the sake of Christ and your children, if he sincerely changes take him back, but if not and you know you can stay without committing fornication, please stay away from him.

  11. Alain says:

    (BELGIUM)  Please read: Lamentations 3: 17-25.

    I thank you all. I’d just like to say that I will keep Pamela in my prayers. I’ve been married for three years now. I can only have a glance of the pain Pamela is undergoing. I was very touched by her testimony. My heart broke while reading it. It’s terrible. But I know He who is able to solve all the problems: Jesus. I put my trust in Him and I know He’ll touch Pamela’s family. God bless you Pamela and may He refresh His spirit in you.

  12. Mary says:

    (USA)  I think the above article has some good advice, but as a single Christian woman who is 50 years old and has never married, I would add the following comments. Just because a woman is attractive to you does NOT make her an adulterous b—-. She may be a a lovely, Christian woman, who is lonely, and she has feelings too.

    A married mans allegiance is to his wife, but that does not give him a right to go around hurting single women. I recently have had problems with a married man I know socially in a group. I think he is one of the most devout Christian men I’ve ever met, (one of the only really). His wife has cancer. I think he is afraid she is dying and the is afraid of being left alone, so his eyes have started to wander around looking at what may be out there for him at his age.

    I don’t think he means to be bad, but he is being very hurtful. I have no intentions of having any sort of personal relationship with him as long as his wife is living, even if he had a moment of weakness and was willing. That said, all the averted eyes, ignoring me when I’m around, etc., can be very hurtful! I am very lonely, and single men at my age do NOT grow on trees. It would be nice if he could just maintain a polite, friendly behaviour towards me when I am around. If he needs to monitor his behaviour, he needs to work on his behaviour and thoughts in PRIVATE.

    Take a few cold showers if he needs to. I have to email this person occasionally due to the group I know him from socially, he coordinates activities. On rare occasions he has signed his emails inappropriately, I think letting me know that he is attracted to me and likes me. It makes me very uncomfortable, and leads my thoughts were they shouldn’t be. No fears. I am a rock, and would never act on this and I have thus far ignored any such “overatures”.

    My point, is that I think men with this problem need to monitor their personal behaviour and thinking and try to maintain a kind demeanor to the object of their attraction. It’s not necessarily the woman’s fault. All single women are NOT Jezebels.

    • Daddy L says:

      (USA)  ”All single women are NOT Jezebels” – what is this in reference to? As a man, I noticed that my response time and sensuality is better if I don’t artificially stop paying attention to the outside. However, if my lady is being good to me, she will always be the center of my desires. So I will notice other ladies, but will not act on it.

  13. Juliet says:

    (UNITED STATES)  To all who are suffering through the nightmare of infidelity, please let your soul be well in our Lord. Our worlds may be in shattered bits, our trust horribly broken, but God is so big, so very big. I’m here another day with hope, that at some point, I will feel balance. I thank God for carrying me through. My best to you all.

  14. SM says:

    (SOUTH AFRICA)  I have fallen short in my marriage. I am in fire with my wife; I am scared and I feel so threatened. I have committed adultery and have fallen short of the grace of God. I have sinned. Please pray for me.

  15. MELINA says:

    (USA)  My husband looks for opportunities to lust at women, give then the “Look”… This hurts so much specially when he is not even intimate with me. I am under a lot of sexual pressure, and do not want to sin nor offend God nor the marriage. But I am sexually starved, and it is hard for me to even try to make my husband go to bed with me specially on the days I witness him looking at other females. How can a woman continue living a healthy life after being treated like this by her husband who does not even care if it huts her, and how do you not feel or control your sexual desire???

  16. Dennis says:

    (USA)  While yes, these methods of defusing the attraction will work. I am an artist so observing, and drawing beauty is part of what I do. So I’ve come to my own method of aversion. I can admire a woman’s beauty, but I must NEVER allow myself to desire her “booty”. I have many friends who are women, and they all know that I’m married, and have kids. If a woman starts coming onto me I just start talking about my kids, and my wife. Let me tell you it has served me very well these last 14 years of marriage. Once you mention a wife, and kids she’ll run for for the hills unless she is able to be just a friend in which case she’ll start talking about her boyfriend, or husband, and her kids if she has any, or if she’s single, and is able to be just a friend then she’ll ask questions about how long you’ve been married, and how old your kids are, and all. There’s nothing wrong with having women who are your friends just don’t allow it to go any further in thought, or action.

    You just have to separate attraction, from desire. To be attracted to a woman’s beauty as such as she catches your eye is natural, but you must remember that if you allow it to go any, and I mean ANY further than that then your wife will skin you alive. Believe me, my wife was a tomboy who used to kick the butts of the guys in her neighborhood when she was younger, so for me this IS VERY much what would happen. Also since we’ve been together since we were 13 it would just be REALLY stupid to try to start over after all these 17 years. Seriously though if you love your wife then take one of these methods of avoiding the desirous end of attraction to heart, and NEVER let attraction become desire.

    • Tony says:

      (USA)  I agree to a point. I believe the overarching point of this article is to be proactive. It’s to not see how close you can get to the line without going over, but rather how far away from the line can you stay. The further the better.

      Also, I wouldn’t count on telling folks about your wife and kids, to always work. There are always a few folks who simply take that as a challenge.

      But I agree, I can talk to my wife about someone who is attractive and notice he or she is attractive without lusting (at least in the case of the woman, LOL). But should I leer and begin to imagine more than just appreciating her beauty, then I’ve crossed a line the Bible is clear to say I should not cross.

      • Dennis says:

        (USA)  Tony, I gotta admit that could possibly be very true. I’ve yet to see that, but I’ve always been very focused on my wife so the temptresses have never had a chance. Unfortunately not everyone is able to stay so focused on the woman God made for them.

        I suppose the other thing that keeps me so focused is that at 13 I wanted a girlfriend, but knew that God wouldn’t just send me a girlfriend so I asked God to send me the woman He meant for me to marry. 2 weeks later I met my wife the day after she moved to the neighborhood near me. So knowing that I know better than to go looking since God already gave me the greatest gift of a wife I could ever ask for.

        I was just offering my method for avoiding that pitfall, since there are VERY few men who can honestly say that they’ve never strayed from their wife in the whole time they have been with them. What’s funny is that my parents wanted me to go out, and meet other girls, and not get tied down to my first girlfriend, but I’m a one woman man. Always have been, and always will be.

  17. Beth says:

    (USA)  Hear goes, I have been married for 25 years. My husband is wonderful man but has admitted to falling and when I say falling I mean FALLING! He has physically and emotionally cheated on me throughout our marriage. When he turned fifty he finally decided to accept Christ as his personal saviour. I was thrilled, but along came the purging. When I say purging, I am talking about confessions of having been with several woman along with fantisizing while we were intimate as well as mb.

    I have been fasting and praying this weekend for guidance and affimation. The only thing I could see and hear was to sever this marriage. I mean a clean slate! I wanted to ask your opinion. I know that this revelation are grounds for divorce and I am okay with this. We have 2 beautiful children and I understand the devastation that a divorce will cause. They are my main concern.

    I want to ask for a divorce on the grounds of reconciliation with a clean slate and a new foundation of a Christ centered family. I want him to get help for this addiction he has. I did see this person changing (slightly) after he was baptized but I am afraid I don’t set boundaries as well as punish the crime, he won’t take me serious.

    I know that I run a risk of him failing in his healing of addiction but I do know that with Christ WE can do anything. Please help with any positive suggestions… this is what presented itself today.

    • Dennis says:

      (USA)  Beth, Your husband did one of the worst things a man can do to his wife. As I agree, divorce is probably what he deserves, my question is can you forgive him? Though this is from a 30 year old man’s point of view, it is the point of view of a 30 year old man whose own wife has cheated on him in the past. We weren’t married at the time, but the pain of betrayal was just as real, and agonizing. Though her infidelity I was able to forgive, and put aside as part of the fall out from the abuse she suffered as a child, I doubt the same can be said for your husband’s infidelity.

      As I stated in a previous post I am an artist by hobby, and so I occasionally draw women. Though always dressed this is comic book style art we are talking about so clothes are basically drawn on the naked form as if painted on. To me to admire beauty is one thing, but to desire the booty of that beauty is another thing entirely. When he allowed his admiration to turn to lust, and then act upon it he thoroughly crossed the line.

      Though what was done is done, and there is no way for him to take it back, or undo the last 25 years. So my ultimate question to you is can you find it in your heart to sit down with him with out the kids around, let him know just how you feel about what he did, and forgive him like I did with my wife?

      My wife, and I were very young when she cheated on me with the two guys that she did. We were only 15, but we had been together, and intimate for about a year, and a half by this point. I was in Track, and Field to try to lose some weight for her, and get ready for football in the fall, while my parents had her watching my little brothers after school. Unfortunately as soon as I got home from practices, and meets they rushed her home, and she ended up hanging out with friends.

      A couple of times the friends she ended up hanging out with were guy friends, whom she thought she could trust. Unfortunately that trust was misplaced. They forced themselves on her, and she felt trapped due to her abuse as a child. After the second time she told me about both times, and I told her that if it happened again we were through. I told her that I understood that it wasn’t entirely her choosing, but she let herself get into those situations, and I wasn’t willing to share her with the rest of the guys in the neighborhood. Especially knowing that she could eventually get pregnant (which she did about 5 months later with our oldest son), I wanted to know for sure that when that time came it would be with MY child. She agreed not to allow herself to get into situations where that might happen again, only hanging out with her girl friends. And after getting things straightened out with my parents about not sending her home right away we were able to set things about that right between us.

      We decided that we couldn’t just keep being intimate, w/o being married. So since we were only 15, and couldn’t actually get married, and knew we couldn’t wait years to be intimate with each other again we said our vows to each other out in the woods between us, and God. I know that we still weren’t really married until we got married in church on Jan 1, 1998, but we were married in our hearts, and she’s never strayed again.

      Perhaps rather than divorce, after you and your husband sit down and talk in depth about this, you might want to renew your vows. If he is really remorseful, and has changed, then renewing your vows just might give you BOTH that clean slate you want. Make sure to let him know though that he might get “out of the dog house”, but he isn’t “off the hook” by any means, and if it happens again you’re through. A second chance is only a SECOND chance the FIRST time after that you’re just kidding yourself.

  18. Grace says:

    (SOUTH AFRICA)  Wow! I’m not married but I see the signs already. Cheating starts with looks and with chats, later on it will be Big. I received Proverbs 5 and my heart’s desire is to have a healthy relationship. If you see trouble do something about it before it’s TOO LATE! I’ve heard many stories about people who cheat and come home with sickness only to spread it to their partner.

    May God give us wisdom and insight. It’s written in the Word that husbands and wives should honor marriage and those who commit adultery will be judged. Let’s stay pure for God… amen!

  19. Toni says:

    (USA) My husband told me that he found a woman in our church attractive last night. I was upset but I did not fight with him. I just went to bed. He said that he did not have lust for her, and thought it was ok to be attracted to her, but I don’t see that it is ok to be attracted to other people. I have no interest in anyone but my husband. Am I right in this? I told him that thinking that was ok was cracking the door open for the enemy who would use that compromise to push his way in. I could feel something between them . . . a mutual attraction when they both looked at one another in my spirit. It felt uncomfortable for me many times when they would talk to one another or even look at one another, and yesterday she wore a very sheer dress. When she walked her buttocks would giggle for all to see; what makes it worse is that she is one of the dancers. It made me worry that he would look at her. He said he didn’t notice. My question is…is it ok for my husband to be attracted to other women? He says that he no longee lusts after other women like he used to. He had previously had a problem with lust, a porn addiction, and adultery.

  20. Kate says:

    (USA) Beth, I too am married for 25 years and my husband has been lusting, and cheating on me. I’ve prayed for him day and night. After a few years he had a conversion. I was so happy, but things got even worse. He started mentally abusing me and accusing me of stuff I had nothing to do with. While asleep at night I was half sleeping, but he was up. He thought I was totally sleeping. He deliberately took his foot and priced my calf. It hurt so much. I said to Jesus if you died on the cross for me, then this should be a breeze.

    He told me when I was pregnant with baby 5 that he thinks of other women while we’re in bed together. The pain he has caused me is unbearable but I give it to Jesus. I truly believe that after having 6 children with this man he is trying to make me leave. He loves women. What should I do?

  21. EVA says:

    (USA) Recently I discovered by accident some texts between my husband a women who asks hims “I know I’m being selfish, by why don’t you leave her?” My husband is a personal trainer at a gym and I know how difficult it may be to not have a wondering eye. I confronted him about it and he said that it was a young girl who has been bothering him. Even though he told her he was married she insisted in talking to him. This is not the first time I know of my husband was communicating with other women.

    I didn’t believe him, so I called this person and asked her to tell me what was going on between them since my husband was putting the blame on her. She was honest and told me that he had approached her. She asked him if he was married or had any children because he is way older than her. He responded “NO”. She said weeks later he confessed to her and told her he was married with an 18 month but that I was not living with him and that I was at another state. Even after I confronted him about it he continued to talk to her an make promises of love. (I knew this thru phone records.) He deleted every text message between them. The only reason he admits this is true is because he has been caught in the lie, if not he would still deny it.

    What hurts me the most is that he was capable of denying his son. I know he loves his son and gives him lots of attention. I have not once shed a tear with this incident. It’s like I’m numb with anger. We finally attended some counseling thru our church and we have a lot to work on. Its only been since Sunday (4 days) and I feel that the drive is not there from my husband’s side. One of the tasks the counselor asked us to do was to pray every morning together and we are having a hard time accoplishing it. I am very confused. I know I have it in me to forgive but the trust is not there. Like I mentioned, in the two years that we have been married this is the third time I discovered flirtatious communication between him and other women and he always promises he won’t do it again.

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Eva, I hate to say it, but it appears that your husband is a player. And being so, he certainly is in the wrong business to stay monogamous. He obviously is more “hands-on” as a trainer than he should be. If he’s really serious about being faithful to you then he needs to make some changes. One of them would be to either change jobs where he works only with men, or he refuses to work with women on a one-on-one basis. There are plenty of men out there who need “training.” If that doesn’t work (because it may be that even if an attractive gal is in the gym he’s still wanting to be more “hands-on” with her than he should) then he HAS to find a way to get out of the personal training business. Right now, he is a type of stalker and is taking unfair advantage in his job. He’s misusing his “off-time” and is capitalizing on what he can gain when he sees an attractive gal. Flirting and marriage isn’t something that should be done, unless it is with each other. That HAS to stop.

      I’ve seen it over and over again where gyms and fitness training centers are meat markets. Many guys and gals go there to not only work-out, but to hook up with someone. Your husband is obviously young and needs to re-evaluate what is truly important and what line of work he can go into so he isn’t so tempted. He has a son that he seems to love a lot. If he loved him like he should, he would work hard to be a good role model for him. Faithfulness and integrity are important character traits to instill into our kids. They learn by example. If he is catting around and lying and flirting with other women, he is not going to be a good role model. The best love parents can give their child is to love each other, be faithful to each other, and model the type of integrity that they would want their child to emulate. This gives them security and guidance –part of what parenting is all about.

      As for your feelings on all of this, it’s no wonder that you are feeling confused, numb and hurt. Anyone with any sense in them would. But I give you credit for trying to reach the place of forgiveness and reconciliation. Trust –that’s something he has to earn and he is FAR from earning that. If you can, you might want to read the articles we have posted on protecting your marriage and putting up hedges of emotional protection to try to guard your marriage. As you read, run these ideas past him and if he isn’t willing to do what it takes to guard your marriage, he’s clueless and suspect. You don’t get different results by doing the same thing over and over again. What was in place in the past obviously didn’t work, so some changes need to be made. As a victimized spouse, you have the right to expect them. Eva, I hope things go in a good direction for you and pray the Lord helps you, guides you, and comforts you as you reach out to Him.

Marriage Missions International