Rudy Giuliani and Judith Nathan are divorcing. Is this a surprise? Yes and No. On the surface it’s definitely a surprise. However, as my book, The Affair Playbook explains, it’s not a surprise at all.
To marry Judith, Rudy Giuliani, who was mayor of New York City at the time, divorced his previous wife Donna Hanover and moved out of the family home (Gracie Mansion, the mayor’s official residence) where he lived with Donna and their two children.
At the time, he called his new relationship, the affair with Judith, adult and mature and he said that he hoped it would last forever.
Going through cancer treatment at the time, Giuliani said, “You don’t go through treatment for cancer and radiation all by yourself. You need people to help you and care for you and support you. And I’m very fortunate I had a lot of people who did that, but nobody did more to help me than Judith Nathan.”
It seemed like a very promising beginning. Thus, it might be surprising that now it’s the “new” couple that is getting divorced.
How This Fits The Affair Playbook
As I explain in The Affair Playbook, this is no surprise at all. The seeds of destruction were planted right as the relationship began.
According to The Affair Playbook, these seeds of destruction are:
- The methodology, way of life and habits of an affair
- The creation of a great story built on a foundation of lies
- Generalizing from the courtship to the marriage, and
- The personality of the woman having an affair, who tends to emphasize the positive and feels looking at the negative serves no purpose.
Rudy and Judith were surprisingly open and walked around the streets of New York City while he was still married to Donna Hanover. Usually secrecy lasts until there is some kind of announcement or information passed on to the spouse that the marriage is over. But there were signs of secrecy at the beginning of the relationship such as different stories about how they met. There was not the usual one set of facts, one story about how a couple met.
It is not uncommon in an affair to hide the details of how the couple met so it can seem accidental, not intentional, a matter of fate and that it was meant to be. Another sign of secrecy is that Mayor Giuliani had expenses for a security detail for Judith billed to obscure city departments “as he was beginning an extramarital affair with current wife Judith” most likely to keep them secret because he may have sensed there was something questionable about openly billing the taxpayers for expenses for a paramour.
We don’t have many details about the methodology and way of life of Rudy and Judith’s affair but what this seed of destruction means is that communication and time together are limited in an affair. Thus, if the couple is around other people who don’t know about the relationship (say work colleagues), the way they speak and act towards each other can be quite unnatural in order to keep the secret going.
The foundation of lies refers in part to what each says about their present marriage partner. Reports say that Giuliani’s lawyer said some very negative things about wife Donna, and apparently Rudy didn’t object.
Also, generally, affair partners only tell each other only positive things about themselves, leaving out any problems or personality quirks. These are errors of omission and sometimes outright lying.
It’s common to generalize from the courtship feelings and circumstances to the marriage, to assume that the sex, the mutual admiration and the positive atmosphere will continue forever. Rudy was a little more reserved, saying he “hoped” it would work out.
Please take a look at The Affair Playbook, What Happens In An Affair in order to gain more insights about the relationships around you.