Infidelity And What To Do After The Affair
Recent statistics suggest that 40% of women (and that number is increasing) and 60% of men at one point indulge in extramarital affairs. Put those numbers together and it is estimated that 80% of the marriages will have one spouse at one point or another involved in marital infidelity.
In a new study conducted by marriage counselor M. Gary Neuman, it’s estimated that one in 2.7 men will cheat—and most of their wives will never know about it.
The truth about infidelity is that no one sets out to purposely hurt their spouse. Something is missing and you get very vulnerable doing without the human need that allows you to feel content and fulfilled. You start searching for a way to fill the void or feel better about yourself.
For over 12 years, I’ve been working with couples and individuals wrestling with the effects of infidelity from an affair and I know this is so terribly painful for you. It’s difficult to know what to do. Sometimes it just feels overwhelming with all the thoughts that are constantly bombarding you. Not only that it can take a huge toll on our self esteem and create a tremendous amount of fears and doubts.
Healing from betrayal with infidelity takes time and commitment. If your spouse has stopped all communication and is ready to recommit to you and the marriage, the following will assist in restoring your relationship:
The truth about infidelity is that you need to:
• Commit to place your marriage first.
• The unfaithful partner is okay about giving you complete transparency and reassurance to help restore the trust – granting access to emails, phone, passwords, etc.
• Commit to healing. Each partner must make a decision to heal and create space for forgiveness.
• Understand what led to the infidelity. Take into account the events that occurred in the relationship contributing to the affair. What were the things that happened or were allowed; how did you not support or nourish each other? Pursue the “how” not the “why.”
• Commit to effective communication. Reframe from blaming. Acknowledge and validate one another. Be open to listening and hearing each other’s perspective.
• Reestablish a friendship. Take genuine interest in your partner. Really get to know one another.
• Design an intentional marriage. Establish agreements that protect your love.
An affair does not need to end in divorce. It creates an opportunity to reclaim and redefine your marriage.
It’s not about blaming someone. That won’t fix what happened. It can’t be explained by blame. It’s really about empowering you to take action to turn things around.
If I can give you knowledge that says that I could have proof that if you do certain things, you can lead your relationship to a better place, that will be much better for you as well because it’s not just about stopping tragedy. It’s about building a much more mutually beneficial relationship.
Stay positive and focused on the marriage.
Men want to feel like they’re pleasing their wives…. making them happy. Sometimes as women we can get caught up in our complaints and criticism as an attempt to pint out what’s missing for us. Men hear that as if they are making us unhappy.
When you give him the message mainly that you screwed up and can do nothing right, then believe it or not, it makes him feel insecure. He thinks,’I can’t win. Turn this around by appreciating what he has done and praising the good no matter how little or if it is 100% correct. That will come in time once he sees you looking at him with the eyes of appreciation and not disappointment. That’s where the love really is.
If your wife has cheated think about the listener you’ve become. Are you letting her turn to you and say what she needs to say? Women yearn for emotional intimacy which is connection and it makes them feel valued and safe to be heard.