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Ask E. Jean For DearSugar: Should I Have an Affair?

Dear E. Jean,

I’m married to a man who works 14 hours a day. When he finally gets home he doesn’t talk to me, doesn’t ask how our 7-year-old son is, he only grunts, gets a bottle of water out of the fridge, sits down in front of his computer and does more work. He hasn’t thrown a baseball with our son once! When he’s home he’s either in front of his computer in his den or watching golf on TV. He’s so closed off and self-involved that when I suggest we actually play nine holes of golf together, he says his back hurts. He pays more attention to our Labrador than to me and his son.

We don’t eat dinner together (he usually eats with “important” clients), we don’t sleep together (he sleeps in the den), we haven’t gone to a movie or a restaurant in a year, and have not had sex in three years.

On the other hand, he’s a great provider and my life is rather pleasant. I have closets full of clothes, a new car, a personal trainer, and my son is going to the best country day school in the county. But my husband does not talk to me. Every day I try to be cheerful, upbeat, try to suggest fun “dates,” interest him in the neighborhood gossip, but nothing. I cook great meals, invite people over — he leaves our guests and goes and sits at his computer!

I knew my husband was a loner when I married him, I also knew our sex life was not the hottest thing going — but what do I do with no sex and no social life? Recently I met a very nice man at the dog groomer’s and we’ve been meeting for coffee. I love our deep conversation — I’m starting to feel human again! He makes me feel appreciated and like I have something to contribute to the world. I’m writing because a couple of days ago he kissed me and my world exploded. I’ve never wanted anything or anybody like I want this man. But I also don’t want to divorce my husband. What do I do? Nobody’s even listened to me in years, let alone kissed me! — Feeling Like New

To see E. Jean's answer

Feeling, My Poor Flamtag,

Nine out of 10 people on DearSugar will disagree with me, but here’s my advice: Have an affair. It will give joy to your life, pleasure to your body, and spirit to your mind. You must, of course, inform your husband first, by walking into his den, turning off his computer and saying: “Darling, I’ve noticed we’ve not slept together since 2005. I’d like a good boffing. Are you up for it?”

When he replies that his “back hurts,” or gibbers some other excuse, smile and say: “I’m sorry to hear that, sweetheart. I hope you feel better. But I can’t be expected to go the rest of my life without one of the greatest pleasures known to womankind.”

When he grunts and asks what that is, reply: “Well, darling, I’m going to put on my prettiest dress, run away to meet the handsomest man, and when I arrive, I’m going to grab him and suck . . . down every word that comes out of his mouth. I’m going to hold . . . a conversation. We’ll exchange ideas, learn more about the world, and perhaps even laugh. Afterwards, of course, I’ll probably hump the daylights out of him.” And with that, leave the room, call your friend, and make a date.

This is not a threat. This is your life. You must create it!

Many DearSugars will advise you to end your marriage and then have the affair — and, indeed, this is an excellent suggestion. You will get more money in a divorce if you stay inside your prison. But I’m going to pay you the compliment of actually believing you possess the mental strength and moral vigor to rebel against a conventional code, stay married, tell your husband you’re going to have an affair, and then make your own happiness by taking what you want. Because if you are not free to love whom you love — what is your worth as a human being?

To see more advice from E. Jean, visit Elle Magazine and

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