06/03/2017 03:02 GMT | Updated 06/03/2017 04:57 GMT

This Is How Not To Have An Affair

Have you ever met someone that you just knew spelt danger? The attraction is undeniable yet anything more than friendship is impossible.

Le Club Symphonie/ Getty Images

False Alarm

Have you ever met someone that you just knew spelt danger? The attraction is undeniable yet anything more than friendship is impossible. It's not love, its possibly chemical or infatuation but this forbidden fruit is oh so desirable. The internet is rife with stories and columns on how to recover from an affair but not much is said about how to avoid them. The song 'False Alarm' by Becky Hill/Matoma springs to mind. Google it!

How about when it's an attraction so intense it makes you weak in the knees, come on, we have all been there. Have you been there while in a committed relationship though? Or for better or worse, married! Fear not! There's hope. You CAN overcome the attraction and turn flirtations into friendship. Look at it this way, if you are attracted to a person physically and mentally you must have something in common with them, so why not be friends and avoid the drama? Of course you love your partner and you will remain faithful. Passing fancies need not destroy homes.

Step 1

Kill attraction in its tracks

If you dig deep enough you will find traits about everyone that you don't particularly like. Have you considered that the person you find so irresistible may be totally wrong for you? Have you watched how they eat or questioned what their thoughts are on the things that matter to you? Of course not, because he/she is just sooooo pretty... Well! Think about it! And then look for the flaws.

Step 2

Spice it up

Maybe the problem is not that you have discovered your 'kindred spirit', maybe you just take for granted the one you have at home. Why not spice it up? In the bedroom of course! But don't underestimate the power of a good conversation, or a long walk alone with your partner or better yet arrange a date night at least once a month and do any or all of the above.

Step 3

Stop Nitpicking

If you are constantly looking for flaws you will find them. It's as simple as that. The things you find cute in some other person may start to seem grating in your partner. See it for what it is. You are romanticising some new attraction that makes you feel desirable again. That feeling is positive and the guilt is negative so you are projecting negativity onto your partner. Looking for flaws in the other person is not the solution. If there is something so deeply fundamentally wrong in your relationship that you are seriously considering cheating, you need to identify what it is. You need to make an effort to resolve it. If there are children involved, you owe it to them to try and fix what is wrong before it breaks.

Step 4

Speak up

Before you take a step that leads to avenues that you think are desirable right now, speak to someone. Find someone you know you can trust and let it all hang out. Some perspective sometimes makes all the difference.

Step 5

Find the strength to draw the line

It is ok to have a laugh over coffee or at the water station or even in the communal work eatery. The catch is not to socialise one on one out of work/campus or gym if this is where you encounter this 'false alarm'. Draw the line at planning a social interaction. Do not make plans with people that may cause you to forget all that you hold dear.

Step 6

Passing go

If your relationship is broken and you both know it and have tried everything to fix it. Then you know what you need to do. Because you have met someone more suited to you it does not mean you should abandon all decency. Once you have tried everything and you both agree its time, end it with sensitivity and care for all parties concerned. Help others to understand but if they don't that's ok too. Your happiness is extremely important. If there are children involved, it is your responsibility to do what is best for them but ultimately they will be happy if you are.

I am a firm advocate of the sanctity of marriage or life partnerships. How each couple makes it work is between them, if it works that's wonderful, if not, try harder. If you have tried everything walk away. Ah, if only it were as cut and dried as all that.