When you start seeing a married woman, it usually starts off as being all about the sex. It’s a thrill: an illicit affair that is just your little secret.
Maybe you thought, at first, that it would always be just that: a fun affair, rather than a long-term relationship.
You might have thought it would just last a few weeks, but now it’s turning into months (or even years) and you’re starting to develop real feelings for her.
You’re falling in love, and you think she might be feeling the same way.
When this happens, you really want her to leave her husband, so that you can be together as a legitimate couple. You’re sick of sneaking around and feeling guilty and grubby all the time.
You just want to be able to have a normal relationship. To go out for dinner without being worried that someone will catch you.
To meet any time you choose and not just when her husband’s away. To be able to make plans together for the future – book a holiday, or maybe even move in together.
You’re ready for this to be more, much more, than just an affair.
But you know that will never happen unless she leaves her husband. How can you tell if she will?
In this article, we’ll run through the key signs that she’s willing to leave her husband for you. You’ll learn what to look out for and what to do if you think she’ll never leave him.
What makes a married woman leave her husband?
Before we talk about the signs that she’s going to leave, it’s important to understand why she might want to leave her husband.
If she’s going to leave him for you, then there needs to be reasons that she wants to leave.
These won’t all be about you. If she is mostly happy with him, even though she loves you too, it’s much less likely that she’ll leave him. Especially if she has kids.
But if her marriage has serious problems, then there’s a chance she’ll decide that she’s better off with you. Women actually initiate divorce twice as often as men do.
Here are some of the biggest reasons why she’ll choose to leave him and choose you instead:
1. She doesn’t talk to her husband any more
Many women leave their husbands because they feel emotionally neglected. They feel as if their husbands don’t really value having an emotional connection with them, and just want sex and someone to cook their dinner.
Women tend to value real companionship and want a husband who can be their best friend, not just their lover.
2. She has different goals from her husband
Sometimes, a woman might feel as if she’s grown apart from her husband. Maybe they met when they were very young, and now her priorities have changed, but his haven’t.
Perhaps they used to be out partying every weekend, but she’s ready to chill more and focus on her career. Or she wants to move out of the city, but he’s not ready. Or she wants to socialise together, but he still wants to be out with the boys every weekend.
Whatever the specifics, if they want different things, they’ve got problems.
3. She wants kids (or more kids) and he doesn’t
For many people, kids are a natural progression after marriage. But sometimes, people change their minds. If a woman married a man who promised her children, and now he’s backtracking, she has a pretty major reason to want to leave.
The same can be true of the number of children. Sometimes a couple agreed to have two or three kids, but after the first one, the husband decides he’s done.
Not having the same views on future children is a big marriage killer. Of course, if a woman does leave her husband for you for this reason, there are some pretty big implications for your future relationship…
4. She’s not happy with their sex life
Lack of sex, or poor-quality sex, is often a sign that there are other things wrong in a marriage. If the sex becomes dull or only happens occassionally, it’s usually a clear sign that the marriage is in trouble.
No-one wants a relationship where they feel like they’re just friends with their husband. If that happens, she’ll want to change something. If a couple is having sex less than 10 times a year, then they are in trouble, according to sex therapists.
5. She feels like she has to do everything
This is a big one for many women. Most couples start off being pretty equal in terms of housework. But then, over time, the husband starts to do less and less.
This is especially true of couples with kids – the woman naturally takes on more at home when she’s on maternity leave, but that doesn’t change even when she’s back at work full-time.
This gradual increase in ‘wifework’ inevitably leads to resentment, and if it’s not fixed, she’s going to feel disrespected and will start thinking about leaving.
8 clear signs that she will leave him for you
For a woman to want to leave her husband, at least one of the 5 reasons above (or something else big) will probably need to be there. But how do you know that, if she leaves, she’ll leave for you?
How do you know if she’s just using you as an escape, while she daydreams about a different life, or whether she’s actually serious about being with you, rather than him?
We’ve come up with 8 clear signs that she might just be thinking of taking the leap.
1. She chooses to spend time with you and not him
Has she started spending more and more time with you?
If she’s beginning to cut back on time with her husband to spend with you, that’s a good sign that she’s now seeing your relationship as her primary one, rather than the relationship with her husband.
Perhaps she canceled their usual date night…in order to spend time with you.
Or she’s stalling on booking a holiday with him for the summer…because she’s not sure if she’ll actually be with him by then. Instead, she’s asking you what your favorite place to travel to is.
2. She talks to you about what life might look like if she was with you and not him
In any relationship, when you start talking about what the future looks like, you know things are getting serious.
When you’re having an affair, introducing those conversations is a big thing. Even bigger than when you’re in a ‘standard’ relationship.
When you get into a relationship with someone who’s single, there are no barriers to you both progressing the relationship however you like.
This means that things often lead naturally from dating to talking about living together or even getting married and having kids.
When you’re in a relationship with a married woman, things are more complicated. It’s hard to make plans for the future because you don’t know if you have a future. Your relationship is supposed to just be about sex and fun…but what if it’s not?
If she starts talking about what you two might be doing together in a year’s time, or she’s asking you where your dream place to live is, or she’s just saying things like ‘imagine if we were together all the time’ – then you know she’s thinking about leaving him for you.
3. She gets careless about being caught
When you started out, she was probably super-cautious. At that point, you were just about fun.
She was happy to meet up for a few hours, have some amazing sex and then head home to her husband. At that time, leaving him just wasn’t on the radar at all.
If this is changing, that’s a good sign that maybe she wants to be caught. She’s thinking about leaving anyway, so being caught would just speed up the process.
Perhaps, rather than having to make the decision to leave, she’s leaving it to fate and half-hoping, half-planning to be found out.
Maybe you find that she stays over with you just a little too often for her to be able to explain it away as ‘staying with a friend’ every time.
Or she has you stay with her when the husband is out of town, and she doesn’t get you to leave until 5 minutes before he’s due to come home.
This is risky…and she wants it that way.
4. She wants to go out and do more things together
As well as getting careless about being caught at home, perhaps you’ve found that she wants to go out with you a lot more often.
At the beginning, everything was secret. There’s no way she wanted to be caught walking down the street with you, let alone out in a restaurant or having a drink in a bar.
But that’s changing. She’s booked a table for the two of you at a restaurant in town, where just about anyone could bump into you.
Or she’s totally happy to spend the day shopping, stopping for coffee and hanging out in the park, not worried at all about whether you’re seen together.
This shows you two things. She’s not worried about being caught, and she now sees you as a partner who she wants to do ‘normal’ things with, rather than just sneaking around for sex.
5. It’s not just about sex
When you’re together, you might start to get some clear signs that she wants a lot more than just sex from you.
Maybe she suggests just hanging out and watching a movie, rather than just coming over for sex and then leaving.
Or she doesn’t want to go home to her husband, and gets upset when your time together nears an end. Or perhaps she seems jealous if she thinks you might be dating other people.
All these are signs that she’s moving from this being just a bit of fun, to something much deeper, with a loving emotional connection rather than just a sexual one.
6. She shows her feelings
If that emotional connection is developing between you, it’ll begin to show pretty clearly in the way that she acts around you.
This might be especially noticeable after you’ve had sex.
Rather than just turning over and going to sleep (or worse, getting dressed and heading home to her husband), she wants to stay in bed and cuddle and talk.
Rather than just telling you how good the sex was, she talks about how great you are, and how much she loves spending time with you.
You might also find that she begins to show affection at other times.
Perhaps she loves to snuggle down on the couch and watch a movie with you, and maybe talk about what a good time she’s having.
Or she likes to surprise you with a cuddle while you’re cooking dinner.
All these are clear signs that her feelings for you are much stronger than just wanting some fun and an escape.
And if that’s happening, she might just be ready to take that leap…She takes off her wedding ring when she comes to see you
If she’s been cheating on her husband with you, she probably feels a bit of guilt for that (even if their relationship isn’t that great).
When you first started seeing each other, maybe that guilt wasn’t so strong.
At that point, all she wanted was a bit of an escape and some fun.
She wasn’t thinking about leaving her marriage, so she didn’t feel too bad about it.
But if her feelings are changing, and now she is thinking that she wants to be with you and not him, that guilt is probably beginning to grow.
And if she’s with you and she just can’t help seeing the wedding ring on her finger, then it’ll eat into her even more, all the time you spend with her.
If you find that she’s started to turn up to your place without her ring on, that’s a good sign that the guilt is getting too much because she doesn’t want to be with him any more – she wants you.
7. She tells you she loves you
This is the big one. It’s pretty hard for anyone to truly love two people at the same time.
And if she loves you, it’s natural that she’s going to want to be with you full-time, and not just occasionally.
If she says those three little words, then you can be fairly confident that she’s thinking of leaving him and being with you.
What if she doesn’t leave her husband?
You’ve fallen in love and all you want to do is plan a future together. But she just isn’t playing ball.
Maybe she talks sometimes about how she’d like to be with you, but it seems like she’s just daydreaming. She never takes any action.
What do you do when this happens?
The first thing is to understand the reasons why she doesn’t want to leave him and be with you.
She might be in love with you, but that doesn’t mean that she’s not also in love with him.
1. She doesn’t want to break up her family
If she has kids with her husband, that’s a pretty big reason for her to want to stay with him.
It’s natural that she’s going to want to keep the family together if she can, rather than dealing with a potential custody battle and not being able to spend as much time as she’d like with the kids.
She’s probably thinking about how it’ll feel to have to split Christmases and birthdays, and might be feeling a lot of guilt at the thought of leaving her stable family set up for an unknown life with you.
2. She’s comfortable
If she’s lived a comfortable and mostly happy – or at least contented – life with her husband for years, it’s a big thing to leave that behind.
She’s probably thinking that while she loves you and the time you have together, she’s also happy when she’s home with her husband.
3. She’s worried about money
Even if she does leave her husband, it’s unlikely she’ll be ready to jump straight into a full-on relationship with you where you live together from the start.
So she’s probably worried about how she’s going to fund a home on her own, especially if you live in an expensive city.
If she’s the one choosing to leave she might not feel like she can kick her husband out. And if she doesn’t have much spare cash, getting set up on her own is going to be hard.
4. She’s scared and worried about the kids
If her husband is volatile or emotionally abusive in any way, she might be scared to leave him.
If she has the kind of relationship where she’s walking on eggshells constantly, then the thought of doing something that will make him blow up, is going to be really hard to contemplate.
If there are kids involved, even more so. She’s not going to want to leave him and then have to hand the kids over every other weekend to an abusive man.
5. She just doesn’t want to
Even if she keeps on talking about how she’d like to be with you, if she doesn’t take any action, maybe she just likes having you as a fantasy escape.
That can be hard to hear, but actions speak louder than words.
What can you do about any of this?
Realistically, there might not be anything you can do.
If she doesn’t want or can’t bring herself to leave, then there isn’t anything you can do to make her change her mind. You can only choose whether to keep seeing her or to end it.
If she really does love you and want to be with you, then you ending it might give her the push she needs.
If she doesn’t, then it’s time to move on. If you are worried about her safety or wellbeing while she’s with her husband, let one of her friends know. That’s almost certainly not something you can help with.
Will she ever leave him?
It’s hard to be with someone who you love but can’t be with full-time.
Love hurts in many ways, but having to see the person you want most in the world going back to her husband every night, when you just want her with you, is one of the hardest love problems there is.
If that’s where you are, it’s natural that you’re constantly on the lookout for signs that she’s going to leave him and be with you.
All you want is to be a normal, legit couple who can go out together without worrying about being caught, and can spend the whole night together whenever you like – without a midnight flit back to the husband.
The good news is that women are more likely to be the ones who start the divorce process, so you’re in with a chance.
And there are several big reasons why they do: lack of sex, different life goals, disagreement on kids, housework rows and lack of communication are all big drivers for divorce.
But even when one or more of those drivers are there, she still has to make the leap.
Signs that she’s about to do it include getting careless about being seen with you, wanting to spend more and more time with you, being more emotional with you and (the big one), telling you she loves you.
Sadly, sometimes even when she wants to leave and does love you, she chooses to stay with him.
The realities of dealing with a split – emotional, practical and financial – can just be too big for some women, especially when they have kids.
You can’t make her leave him. But you can look for the signs and, if they’re there, talk to her. If the answer’s no, you have the choice to move on rather than hanging on hoping.
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