One of the great temptations in doing the MAP toward the end of the process, is to use your new attractiveness to create a serious attachment to someone outside your marriage. After years of struggling to get your wife to show you attention, affection and sex, to suddenly have that offered from another woman is near impossible to turn down.
But I think you should think carefully before you start up a relationship triangle between you, your soon to be ex-wife and a girlfriend.
The first thing to know is that anyone you attach to like this, is a transitional person.
Urban Dictionary: A transitional person is the first person you date during and/or after the ugly ending of a long term serious relationship, or possibly a drawn out death of your partner. They comfort you through the pain, self doubt, insecurity and other difficulties. Then, as you heal, they are a reminder of that terrible time and pain, so you gently ease them out of your life.
Only 3% of affairs turn into a new marriage, and those marriages fail at very high rates. So when you have an affair partner during the last year of your marriage, realize that your affair partner will not be part of your life over the long term. Or in plain English, when you leave your wife for another woman in particular, it’s odds on that you will eventually end up with neither one of them.
Should your transitional person actually realize that they are your transitional person at any point, they may end the relationship. Typically this happens at the worse possible moment for you, usually just as you step boldly and bravely out the door leaving your sobbing wife behind, only to hear your girlfriend tell you that she’s going to give it one more try with her husband and she can’t see you anymore.
Failing to make the jump between women like this is called Not Sticking The Landing, and it basically means you are seriously screwed, and all by your own hand.
So in terms of running the MAP, I generally advise not actually getting a girlfriend into the mix or having a full fledged affair. By all means flirt and prove that you can pull female attention – in fact that’s vital. But gaining a transitional person means that you have started to abandon fixing your marriage as a goal, it makes the situation more complex and you abandon the moral high ground.
The moral high ground is important to keep if you have it. It’s one thing to leave a woman with a serious drinking problem that refuses to get help. It’s another thing to have your marriage finally fail because you had an affair in no small part because of her drinking problem. By the time the spin doctors get through with it, she only ever had a drinking problem because of your affairs. And by “spin doctors” I mean her lawyers.
So keep the problem you are trying to fix simple and reasonable. Once the divorce is final (or close to it), then it’s far easier to move forward with a new relationship without the old one dragging behind like a broken anchor.