Having Affairs and Holiday Celebrations

Relationship Advice for those who are into, or considering Married Dating

(The very best insights to the difficult questions from the dating forum)

I'm dating a married woman. It's getting close to Christmas time and we both want to spend time through the holidays. Is this insanity or are there viable options where we could find some time with each other?

Well, I'm going to work through two different possible scenarios for you. It'll depend on where you're coming from for me to suggest where you might want to go. In general, a man that makes the decision to date a married woman does so for many solid, good reasons. One of the bigger ones is usually that they don't want all that relationship fanfare and stress. It's more likely that they are looking to rendezvous, have some fun and passion, have some relaxing easy time together, and then not see each other for days. It's a no strings attached arrangement. Your wanting to spend time together around Christmas sounds like it could mean you're looking for a girlfriend, not a married woman.

The thing is, there is actually a very big difference between men that are purposefully seeking a married woman to date, and people who just wind up in the situation. You didn't give a lot of detail. That could mean you were looking for general advice. It could mean you were rushing, or that you didn't know what to say. But, it could mean that you didn't want me to know the details. 'Affair' has a dirty sound to it, doesn't it. It doesn't sound as in control as 'dating a married woman.' There's a difference emotionally. Which means there's a difference in the advice you should follow.

I try to give advice to people to make the best of their lives. I try to do that without judging and without projecting any old fashioned or unrealistic rules of perfection. We're human. We screw up. We make mistakes. We're complicated and our lives are unpredictable. People get married too early, or they change, or they grow. Sometimes people have to deal with dysfunctional families, or horrible jobs. There are lots of reasons why someone just can't leave a marriage that isn't making them happy. Maybe they have to stay for financial reasons, maybe they think the spouse wouldn't survive divorce, maybe there are kids involved or elderly parents to care for. Maybe the marriage isn't so bad, they just need something on the side for sex or companionship so they can keep their sanity and feel happy... and sometimes being honest about that with the people it would potential hurt just isn't worth the pain it would cause. If you've read my advice, you can see I'm very supportive of the 'life is short, you should go ahead and live it' philosophy. I see nothing wrong with your married woman deciding she wants to have a dating relationship with you. I see nothing wrong with you, who I'm assuming is a single man, choosing to enjoy the single life and date a married woman at the same time. I hope for your sake that's the case. No judgments, but it really would be very hard if you were wanting more with this woman than she can give you. Is it possible you're in the wrong relationship? If you are in love with this woman and want more with her, but she doesn't want to leave her husband and make that happen, then you have a harder path to follow here. You're going to have to accept that those Christmas get togethers are going to be slim. Hey, married dating isn't for everyone. If this feels close to the kind of relationship you're having, my advice to you is not to make it any harder. Forget the holidays. Either accept that this is what it is, or seriously spend this alone time over Christmas thinking about whether or not you should be trying to move on. Now, here's the other scenario I said I'd broach.

Enjoying your married dating, enjoying your decisions, enjoying your life... and wanting to enjoy it for Christmas too? You can't do Christmas Day. Forget that. But you might be able to swing Christmas Eve, or at least the day before. Do not be fooled by the idea that the mall or department stores or local outlet shops will be packed with people and you'd never be spotted in big crowds. There will always be people you know shopping too. Do not fall for that hide in plain sight thing. You want to be as discrete now as ever. But what you could do is try to meet up on your way to the shopping. Shopping is a great excuse to get out of the house. It sounds like she is the one that will need the excuse to slip away. She shouldn't try to do it at any time something is actually scheduled: during dinner, a play, during any kind of planned event. You're just going to have to suck it up and deal with that. She could however make the excuse that she needs to buy one more present on Christmas Eve. She could head toward the mall and detour to your rendezvous. As long as she comes home with that gift in her hand with a valid receipt, then you should be fine. She can always say the crowds, the traffic, it was manic, and she is later than she had thought she'd be. If not on Christmas Eve, then maybe the day before. Hey, it's better than nothing. Additionally, the day after Christmas is a huge shopping day. Most stores start the after-Christmas sales. As long as she goes home with big bags of 50% off wrapping paper and ornaments, she should be able to slip out for the whole day or early evening without much issue.