Thursday 19 April 2018


James Delingpole

"I have been married for 22 years, and my extramarital relationship is the only thing that I lie about. It was a big step for me. I pride myself on my honesty in other aspects of my life, but I was sick of lying to myself and pretending I was happy when I wasn't. The physical side of my relationship with my wife has disappeared, and there is little prospect of it coming back.

"We went to counselling four years ago, and things improved for a few months, but then we got back into the same old routine. It is the one thing in our relationship that gets swept under the carpet and not discussed.

"I came to the conclusion that my wife's physical needs are just far fewer than mine, and then had to decide between breaking up the marriage, which I certainly did not want to do, and seeking something physical elsewhere. The choices left to me were to go and pay for it, which was a no-go because I wouldn't feel comfortable just having sex -- I wanted some kind of friendship, or to meet someone else. I was only looking for one person, not to score notches on my bedpost, and I wanted someone in a totally different circle to mine.

"A year ago I joined a website for married people looking to have an affair. It's called Illicit Encounters. At first, I was incredibly sceptical about online dating and dating in general -- I hadn't been on a date in 22 years. I had coffee with a couple of women, but there was no spark. It wasn't until three months later that I met my mistress (I haven't actually described her as that before). She is also in a sexless marriage. We now meet twice a month on average, always at a neutral location, normally a hotel restaurant, before going upstairs.

"I have learnt that relationships and marriages are not black and white. I never wanted to leave my wife; I love her and we have two lovely children. I am the first to admit that it is a very 'Have your cake and eat it' attitude, but, perversely, the website is keeping my marriage together. I am happier at home now that this yearning is fulfilled.

How long that will last I don't know, but at the moment it is ticking all the boxes."

Irish Independent

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