In a way, this is like some sort of criminal enterprise. A conspiracy wherein the participants knowingly obscure their movements and take actions to hide their tracks. Fake email addresses, rules of engagement on how to communicate; what to say if we suspect compromise of our discussions.
There have been close calls like when my little iPad tried to sync with my phone - in front of my wife. Or when Erin inadvertently placed an Internet phone call while my wife sat a few feet away. I'm quick to suppress the evidence and divert attention elsewhere. I've learned to mute all the sounds on my phone, my computer, my laptop, my iPad. These seem to be the tricks everyone in this business, everyone engaged in such an arrangement learns.
I move small accounts of cash to gift cards. Cash I would have used to purchase odds and ends, snacks, lunches or daily work necessities I don't really need and instead slip into an unnoticed pocket in my wallet. My wife will occasionally take my wallet from the dresser and place twenty or forty dollars in it so I'm not that guy who never has cash. I siphon off funds and transform them into gift cards which will allow me to anonymously purchase little gifts. She laughs at the idea that I'm earning all the money and then funneling it out $20 at a time. She loves fancy panties and I love seeing them on her. A single picture of her ass partially covered in Victoria's Secret is money well spent.
I don't envy any of the Ashley Madison lovers who were hacked, but I must use what they have learned to help in my own world of secret e-mails and chats. My phone must remain pristine at all times; I can't be nervous about handing it over to my wife, ever. She may not be a snoop in general, but an innocent review of my pictures, my instant messages or my e-mails must not and never will reveal conversations with anyone that is not easily associated with work or family or neighbors.
We've talked about being caught or questioned. Deny, deny, deny, and if all else fails, deny some more. Erin tells me that she can cry on cue, and if pressed she would turn on the waterworks to make anyone feel bad for even suggesting such a horrible thing.
We know it would be bad to be caught, yet we move forward. My confidantes tell me I should cool it, slow things down, back off and let it fade. Yet, here I am. I trust the advice I'm given and I know it to be good. And still, I move on. We're just friends. We chat and e-mail. We have not seen one another in over six months. This is not a sexual affair, but it sure feels like an affair.