Generally, married men engaged in extramarital relations exhibit the same symptoms of the affair disease. Because every relationship is unique, the words, tune and rhythm may vary. But they all dance to the same adulterous music aptly named affair fog.
How can you tell if your husband’s recent weirdness isn’t just the flu? These signs can help spot the difference:
1. His behavior takes a 360-degree turn. The once timid man is now outspoken, or the previously gregarious becomes reticent.
2. He erects an invisible barrier between the two of you, trying to distance himself from the marriage and your family.
3. Does every little thing tick him off? Impatience may mean he wants to be somewhere else, with someone else.
4. Each time your blissful marriage is the topic, he brushes it off as a myth.
5. The office suddenly issues him notices of suspension for slacking, tardiness or absences.
If you’ve checked three or more of the above signs, then your husband is unequivocally in the affair fog zone. But you want to be certain and know how to snap him out of it, so read on.
What is Affair Fog?
The mental and emotional high a married man feels at the beginning of an affair causes an internal transformation. It’s called affair fog because he becomes oblivious to everything outside of the affair. Prompted by the affair’s illicit nature, the cheating husband lives it out in his mind. While he wants to bask in the euphoria that newfound “love” brings, he must also keep his feelings private. Tough act!
But the mind is even more powerful. So even though the man wants to keep his feeling to himself, his mind doesn’t allow it, no matter how hard he tries. The result – a skewed version of the experience – a male who walks around in a perennial daze. Remember the walking dead? Well, only he’s not dead.
This passive state at home is one of the more common signs your husband is cheating with a coworker.
Not a Cloud of Mental Disorder
The Dr. Jekyll to Mr. Hyde’s transformation worrying you? That his personality change is triggered by an affair is true. However, that truth won’t be apparent until you discover it. Meanwhile, he seems distracted, mumbling in his sleep, and hardly touches his breakfast. Aren’t these symptoms of someone going mad?
He is mad. As in delirious with infatuation, not mad as in crazy.
Affair fog is where he’s at, his very own happy place. The deep, dark secret he planted as a seed of possibility is now a full-blown universe of his creation. A new life with his affair partner, a bright future mostly existing in his head. For now, at least.
Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
In the early months of a relationship, both parties are swept up in a whole new world inhabited by only the two of them. It’s an exciting journey of discovery. Knowing that an emotional connection exists between oneself and another person encourages one to explore the extent of their bond.
An affair is no different. So, if your husband is having one, then he’s trekking a path away from you and the kids. Into the fog of his affair.
The Stages of Affair Fog
The changes you now see in your husband didn’t happen overnight, or all at the same time. Rather, they descended on him in gradual cadence as the affair developed. And, sadly it is not a blink and it’s over kind of situation. It veers its course through a few affair fog stages. Read on to know more.
Lost in the Mist of Romance
You’ve been there and done that. Family, friends and coworkers knew you were in love before you spilled the beans. They all saw the signs – rosier cheeks, fuller laughter, more inspired work.
An unfaithful spouse doesn’t have the same liberty of exhibiting the same signs. In fact, he needs to do the exact opposite in order to continue deceiving the unsuspecting wife. Hence, his speech becomes deliberate and calculated, so also his actions. He cannot speak or move freely in his own home for fear of giving his real thoughts and feelings away.
Only two places exist where he can be spontaneous – the one he shares with the affair partner, and the one he created in his head. Thus, the first stage of the affair fog commences.
The Trance of Time
As your husband’s relationship with his affair partner develops, he would want to spend more time with her.
Does he leave for work earlier than usual, and then come home much later? You should wonder where he’s getting breakfasts and dinners. And with whom.
Next, he will look for excuses to not spend the weekend at home or to miss family gatherings. He’ll jump at every opportunity to work overtime or travel for business.
On the other hand, these actions may be legitimate. The company where he works could be launching an important project requiring your husband’s input. If he’s eyeing a promotion, this is the best springboard.
How, then, can you discern what’s really going on?
If your hubby used to be a devoted and loving spouse but is now distant and aloof, then something is amiss.
And in the few hours he spends at home, is he still the doting father you knew him to be? Or is he also indifferent to the children?
This detached demeanor is an indicator of being enveloped in an affair fog. It’s also what usually sets off a betrayed spouse to investigate, and eventually find out, about his infidelity.
Deep in the Mist of Intimacy
The next stage in an affair fog coincides with your spouse and his affair partner taking their relationship to the next level.
Whether they’re just having sex, or they define it as making love, the implication resonates through your marriage. To your husband, replacing you with someone else in bed signifies the severing of your marital ties.
Through the fog, everything and everyone looks blurry, except for his affair partner. She shines forth like a beam of light carrying the hope of a young and free relationship. This version of his reality is devoid of the burden of responsibilities.
Thus, he views your home as a nest of shackles. He snaps at you each time you remind him of a bill due for payment. Every chore he used to do without complaint is now met with groans.
Dazed and Confused Memory of the Marriage
Finally, in the last stage of an affair fog, your husband tries to rewrite your love story. His state of mind dictates him to stress the bad and downplay the good.
He feels compelled to write you off as the villain because you are the only obstacle in the path to his affair’s fulfillment.
In order to maintain a relationship with his affair partner, your spouse must regard it as perfect. And it can only be so if compared against a problematic marriage. In addition, the delusion of being in a bad marriage cushions the blow of guilt.
The pull of a blissful affair fog is difficult to resist. Its deception is such that men of stature have been known to bow down on bended knees before it.
At this stage, your husband compromises his values like he never did before. He throws caution to the wind and ditches all effort to hide the affair. He’s prepared to pay the costs – whether it’s his job, his friends, the kids, and you.
How long does the Affair Fog last?
Sadly, there is no right answer to how long does affair fog lasts. There is also no hard and fast rule to an affair fog timeline. It depends on the man’s resolve and the strength of the foundation upon which his values are built.
A married man lost in the fog too long may not escape until devastating damages have been done that can’t be undone. This means getting a divorce, being away from the kids, cut off from family followed by a mountain of regret.
But the haze can clear even before stage two is concluded. How long does affair fog infatuation last? Often, not beyond a few months. Sometimes, his conscience reigns supreme, opening his eyes to the person he has become isn’t his true self.
While your spouse is in the thick of an affair fog, he will transform into a person you hardly recognize. He will do things you would have never imagined he’s capable of and say things you’ve never heard him utter. However, the fog can be lifted, and you can help him get out of it. Learn to recognize the signs early. And then, earn his trust by understanding without judgment. It’s easier said than done I agree, but if your marriage is worth saving, then it must be done.
As with any affair, there is an underlying reason for your spouse’s vulnerability to being caught in the cloud of euphoric infatuation. Assure him that you are still the same woman he married, his best friend, the only person he can rely on to be his partner in resolving his issues.
Infidelity is obviously not an easy situation but it’s not the death knell for marriage you might expect. Roughly 40% of marriages going through something like this have come back from it and (sometimes) stronger than before. I’ve covered how to get over being cheated on and stay together in more detail but it’s not about pretending it didn’t happen. It’s about addressing the underlying causes.
The relationship advice I provide on this website aims to help people heal, move on, and repair their marriage. However, keep in mind the context of your marriage when applying suggestions, whether they are from me or from someone else.
Each marriage is unique, and only you know best the next step to take in your journey. But like I always say, if the relationship is worth salvaging, then spare no effort. You can heal together and come out stronger. Coz the sun doth shine!