An affair is a romantic, friendly or sexual relationship with another person outside of marriage or committed relationship.

It usually involves intense emotional and sexual connection towards another individual that is not your spouse or partner.

Affairs typically happen when a married person develops strong physical or emotional attraction towards another individual that leads to a series of events and activities.

Since affairs are acts of deception and are illicit and unlawful, they are always kept confidential and hidden from the public eye. Hence the term “secret affair” has become widely known and used to define such relationships.

Character and Nature of a Secret Affair

An affair may or may not last for a long time and has an unpredictable course. But it certainly happens between two individuals who are not within the bounds of marriage or commitment with each other.

One or both parties within an affair may be married and are technically committing an act of deceit and disloyalty towards their partner.

Affairs come in many forms and usually involve emotional, physical or sexual attraction towards another person even while in a relationship or married to someone.

Affairs develop in work places, social gatherings, among friends and even within neighborhoods. Physical attraction, emotional connection, spiritual chemistry or sexual desires are just some of the factors that can potentially lead to secret affairs but not all.

Contrary to common beliefs, sex is not always an element for some secret affairs. In this age of technology and social media hype, cyber affairs and online romances can also easily happen between two individuals who have respective partners or spouses.

The internet plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of such affairs.

Still, regardless of the nature of an affair, most people agree that it falls under the act of cheating. The emotional, sexual or romantic elements that exist between two individuals who are already married to others strongly suggest infidelity.

Such betrayal of trust can potentially affect a marriage/relationship and lead to serious consequences and even permanent damages.

Affair Types

The term “affair” has become a fairly common word. But you have to understand that not all affairs are the same and equal in terms of magnitude. Infidelity can find its way through in many different ways.

Therefore, it is crucial to know what type of affair a cheating partner is having. This can help you decide whether to end or to fight for the relationship.

The magnitude of the affair is detrimental to a marriage or relationship. It directly affects all the parties involved in a lot of ways as well as the fate of the marriage.

The deeper the emotional and sexual connection, the harder it is to accept, to forgive and to understand the affair.

Affairs that are sexual and emotional in nature have direct impact to marriages and relationships.

In this age of digital enthusiasm, cyber-exploration and self-curiosity, extramarital affairs have become easily accessible.

Aside from the typical course of affairs that we’re all familiar with, the internet has also become a source of secret affairs through online dating sites, dating apps, and matchmaking sites.

To understand this further, here are the different types of affairs that currently exist in this modern age;

Sexual Affair

Also known as the classic cheating, sexual affairs develop through physical and sexual attraction. For some, emotional involvement may further complicate the situation.

Such affairs happen due to lack of intimacy, sexual discontent and lack of excitement in marriage. Thus, a person may develop physical and sexual attraction to another person in an attempt to fill in that void in his/her marriage.

Other individuals fall into sexual affairs to feel young and desirable again. The affair serves as a constant reminder of their vitality and sex appeal. It helps boost their ego and adds excitement to their lives.

Emotional Affair

Emotional affairs start with harmless friendship and do not involve physical intimacy right away. They usually start as an inspiration and a “ray of sunshine” to a rather dull and boring day.

People who have emotional affairs claim that they feel youthful, more vibrant and energetic. A typical example of an emotional affair is “office fling” or regular bouts of flirting that happen in the workplace.

It could also stem from the regular conversations you have with a colleague, neighbor or gym mate. Some emotional affairs could lead to sexual affairs but not all.

Affairs can weaken the foundation of marriages and relationships.


Also known as the digital affair, cyber-romances fall under the modern types of affairs. You may or may not meet the person physically but your exchange of messages, daily chats and regular emails are enough to reveal that cheating is actually taking place.

Cyber-Romances start online usually through social media apps like Facebook, dating sites like or sex cams. Matchmaking sites that promote extramarital affairs can likewise be found online and trigger infidelity.

Accidental Affairs

One-night stands and unintentional sexual relations are the typical examples of accidental affairs. They are usually short-term and range from a single night of mistake to a few weeks of sexual hype and flirting.

Accidental affairs may either be purely sexual or emotional or both. However, the cheating partner may eventually realize that he/she is not enjoying the affair.

It may even seem that the consequences and guilt far outweigh any pleasure that the affair is causing.

Accidental affairs are usually brief. They can either be purely sexual or emotional. However, the realization that the consequences far outweigh the pleasure are the most common reasons why they end.

Exit Strategy Affair

An Exit Strategy affair stems from unhappy and troubled marriages. In this type of extramarital affair, the person who strays from the marriage feels that he/she is no longer romantically in-love and sexually-turned on with his/her spouse.

They may feel that their spouse is just like a constant friend who’s there for them or a brother/sister who helps them in times of need.

The love still exists but it’s no longer enough to hold the marriage together. Thus, they visualize their marriage as a dead end.

In such cases, having an affair offers a convenient “exit strategy” to end the marriage.

People who are in this situation are unwilling to let go of their marriage until they are firmly grasping on another potential relationship that will enable them to land on solid ground.

Revenge Affair

As the term implies, a Revenge Affair stems from anger, disappointment or resentment towards the spouse. This affair may also happen as a form of retaliation for the partner’s bad habits, extramarital affair or serious mistakes.

In some cases, mistreatment and neglect of spouse are the main factors behind such affair. Sadly, Revenge Affairs have the worst outcomes and may eventually lead to permanent separation or divorce.

For example, the wife discovers that her husband is cheating on her. She commits to take on “revenge” and gets even by having an affair herself.

This may worsen the scenario and can further complicate the situation. Thus, marital conflicts from “revenge affairs” are the most challenging to fix.

For some individuals, the feeling of neglect, discontentment and unhappiness are the reasons why they cheat on their partners.

Love Obsession Affair

Love Obsession Affair has something to do with “obsession” over the intensity of a new relationship. Sex is not always a factor but rather the concept of “being in love” and “getting high on love”.

This affair is common among those who have love addiction. Such love addicts tend to have one relationship after another in an attempt to find a perfect and lasting love.

They suffer from obsession over the blissful honeymoon stages of a relationship. Thus, when a relationship starts to get old and comfortable, they seek for the intensity of a new love affair.

Some love addicts have a tendency to feel uncomfortable and lost once they get into a deeper relationship. There is a constant hunger for that one person that they cannot seem to find.

People who fall into Love Obsession Affairs may feel secure and comfortable with their marriage but something is always lacking.

They may sometimes feel as if they are with the wrong person and they feel half-hearted about their marriage.

To fill this void, they get into an affair in an attempt to find the “feeling” they’re longing for.

People who are obsessed with being in love constantly seek for the thrill and excitement of a new relationship.

Why People Cheat and Get Into Affairs

There are many reasons why people get into affairs. Sadly, as seen in some cases, it has completely nothing to do with their marriage or relationship. People who get into affairs may even be very vocal about loving their partners or spouses.

The reasons vary from wanting to infuse some excitement into their lives all the way to finding inspiration in others.

For instance, a man who gets into an affair with another woman may be drawn to this person simply because of the feeling he gets whenever they are together.

It could be that the man experiences a sense of youthfulness and vitality whenever he’s with this other woman – a feeling which he can no longer feel within his marriage.

Therefore, not all secret affairs are indicators of troubled and unhappy marriages. As much as we would like to perceive it that way, some people get into affairs for other reasons other than falling out of love from their partners.

Getting into an affair is also not a symptom of unhappy or discontented people – especially in this modern age. Having an affair is an expression and behavior of a person who is seeking for something else or something more.

Having an affair is not always a symptom of unhappy marriage. It results from the desire to seek for something else or something more besides the current relationship.

How Secret Affairs Start

Having an affair is not something that people would willingly expose or talk about. The fact that secret affairs may be happening even in stable marriages is reason enough to conclude that they can silently take place without anyone knowing about it.

Boredom and loneliness are factors as well as discontentment and lack of excitement in marriage.

Perhaps a close relationship with a co-worker can get too far during long nights at the workplace. Or a sudden attraction may develop during a business trip with a colleague.

For example; you may find yourself developing attraction towards the public adjuster miami who’s helping you with your insurance; or the local bank manager who’s in charge of your loan; or that gym instructor from California who’s giving you extra attention.

Needless to say, an affair can happen without a plan and without any intention.

It could also be a long-running circumstance wherein a married person turns to someone to fill-in an emotional or physical void that his/her spouse is unable to fill.

Affairs could happen between colleagues, friends and other acquaintances. They can happen without a plan, without any intention and sometimes, without warning.

Infidelity and affairs no longer come as a surprise among men. What is actually more surprising these days is the fact that women are likewise getting into their own secret affairs. And the nature of affairs varies from cyber romance to emotional to sexual.

Apparently, men and women sometimes cheat to overcome their boredom and to beat the monotony of their lives.

Others experience discontent and lack of appreciation from their partners so they choose to seek attention from others.

There are also some who get into affairs to feel attractive and desirable once again and to relive their long-lost youth.

And finally, there are certain affairs that just develop out of nowhere without warning.

The Impact of Having an Affair on Marriage – Conclusion

Having an affair is a serious form of infidelity which means that you are cheating on your partner/spouse. It comes in many different forms and is not limited to having sex with another person.

Affairs, infidelity and cheating can be emotionally-draining to couples and can put an end to an otherwise beautiful marriage.

Sex or no sex, an affair is still an affair. And it counts as cheating. It could be your diversion or “time out” from your marriage but it’s only a matter of time before your spouse learns about it.

Cheating, even though it is wrong, has always had a way of seducing vulnerable couples and fragile relationships. And this is where the various types of affairs always come into play.

Having an affair may be very common. However, it does not alter the fact that it can be morally-damaging and emotionally-draining to all those who have an involvement.

It can significantly weaken the foundation of a relationship and put an end to an otherwise beautiful marriage.