Dear Stavroula

Ask Stavroula: I Don’t Know if I Should Return to My Husband

Dear Stavroula,

I find it very difficult to write to you about my problem, because I know that many will rush to judge me. But it’s easy to judge when it’s not you going through it. I do not like criticizing people, and I would have said the same things before I went through what I went through. I was married to a very good man, kind and loving, who loved me and gave me everything but one. Our love life was non-existent. I tried to come to terms with the idea, convincing myself that it is more important to have a good quiet life with a man by my side, who provides me with emotional and financial security, who is a good father (we have a young son) than to have passion, and I had managed it until I met X. I met him at work and from the first moment we felt comfortable together, we talked about various topics and our world view matched. He was also married, trapped, as he told me, in a relationship with a woman who has nothing to give him, but they married right out of school and it is not easy for him to break free, since they have a daughter. At some point without planning it we got closer and he kissed me. I fell madly in love with him, I felt unprecedented feelings and as much as I wanted to stop thinking of him, I couldn’t. I asked him to keep his distance but he was approaching me at every opportunity until our relationship finally progressed.

Because I am not a person who can bear to make a fool of someone else, I spoke to my husband and asked him to split up. Even though I hurt him so much he was willing to ignore the fact that I had had another relationship, but I was so in love that all I wanted was to leave. He left and I was now free in the hope that X would do the same as he told me he would and we could be together. But he didn’t. He continues to be with both his wife and me. It’s been about a year since I broke up with my husband and X keeps telling me to wait while he lives a normal family life. We are together when he manages to steal some time. I feel betrayed and alone. The holidays are coming and my child will go to his father and I have no one. I don’t even have a good relationship with my parents anymore. My husband implicitly tells me that he wants to get back together again. Maybe this is the best choice for me? I am so confused. What should I do?


Dear Helen,

If I understand correctly from your letter, you are still having an affair with X but because you can’t stand the impasse you’ve found yourself in, you’re thinking of getting back to your husband, who still wants you and you’re asking me what to do.

The only one who can decide what is best for you is you. But it would be good to think about some things before you make a decision.
When you were married and found that there was a problem in some area of your relationship (from what you tell me), did you somehow try to overcome the problem? Did you discuss it with your husband, did you seek the help of an expert?

If not, have you thought about why you didn’t do it? If you tried to overcome the problem again, what went wrong?

Because if you decide to go back to your husband, you may face the same problem. What are you going to do? Do you have the will, the maturity and the determination to work on the relationship with the man you have a child with and get away from the other, or do you just want to go back because you need it, or because your expectations of a grand romance with a happy ending were denied and now you feel lonely and frustrated? How do you feel about your ex-husband? Have you ever shown that you love him, appreciate him, admire him, or have you tired of having a relationship with a colleague and are looking for the safety of returning to your husband?
You are wondering what would be best for you, but I think you should think about others and especially your child. If your return is not a conscious decision, if you do not have the will to fight to reclaim your home, to try to rebuild your relationship with your husband, you may have to reconsider.

What will be the consequences for you, your husband, and your child if you come back as a family and after a while you realize that you can no longer take it and want to leave again?

I think it might be good before you do anything to work a little on yourself, maybe with the help of an expert. It will help you to clarify some things inside you.


Dear Stavroula, I study at university, I go out, I talk to a lot of people, I communicate with a lot of people on social media, but I don't have any friends.

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