steps to an affair

Steps to an Affair and Ways to Prevent It

Watch Out for this Slippery Slope!

The first steps that lead to an affair are common to most couples. Let’s outline them and then discuss some strategies for safeguarding your marriage!

  1. Something makes you lean away from your spouse (argument, sickness, a trauma).
  2. Awareness of another person (entertain lingering thoughts of them).
  3. Innocent meetings with that person open the door to flirting (stop now, or you’ll go down the slippery slope quickly) — or, perhaps more common in today’s day & age, starting to text, Facebook or email with that person on a regular basis.
  4. Meetings become intentional and planned by one of the persons.
  5. When in a group setting, the two people linger in conversation with each other.
  6. Conversations shift to feelings about life, God, relationships…deeper topics. (Raise the red flag for help!!)
  7. The two people have isolated meetings under the guise of legitimate purposes.
  8. The two people have isolated meetings just for pleasant conversation.
  9. Embraces become affectionate, and playful touching begins.
  10. Embraces become passionate (everything but sex).
  11. Adultery happens (and torment begins).
  12. The affair is made public.

The Importance of Leaning Towards Your Spouse

Since Jim and I first learned about this topic (we were at a conference in Texas years ago and heard Pastor Brady Boyd talk about this), we’ve added new phraseology when talking about staying close in our marriage relationship. We talk about “leaning away” and “leaning toward” each other. Some examples:

“Sorry for leaning away from you earlier, Sweetheart!”

“I made you this snack because I want to lean towards you, honey!”

“I am leaning towards you, heart and soul. All of me, all for you!”


Another thing to keep in mind is how else you can intentionally connect with each other on a regular basis, as on a weekly date night (never underestimate this habit – it can change your marriage).

Here are a few other resources you may find helpful to avoid an affair:

Do you see yourself sliding down the slippery slope leading to emotional, and even physical, adultery? If so, get help, and start working on repairing your marriage relationship now!

Don’t underestimate the power of… leaning towards one another!