Recovering from an affair is no easy process. It takes time, it hurts a ton, and ultimately, it requires you and your spouse to both face some troubling realities about the marriage, where it went wrong, and how you can get things back on track…
With that in mind, there are some very straightforward facts you need to acknowledge before you can begin the healing process. Face these head on, and understand that the pain you feel doesn’t have to last forever.
1. Details Hurt
While you may want to know some of the specifics – like who and why – digging too deep into the details will only make you feel worse. It can create mental images that are hard to shake, make you not want to go certain places, and so on.
The gritty details won’t make the situation any better. Learn what you must to help you understand the issues that lead to infidelity, but don’t torture yourself with every last piece of information.
2. Your Spouse is a Liar
It hurts to hear, but it’s true. If your spouse cheated on you, kept secrets, snuck around, etc. – they ARE a liar.
Now, that doesn’t mean they’ll always be one, or that there’s no coming back. It just means that you both have to acknowledge that trust is broken, and has to be rebuilt from the ground up. Own this fact, and begin the slow journey of repair.
3. Your Spouse is The Source of Your Pain
You’re hurt, and you have every right to be. No amount of apologizing, kind actions, or any other action on your spouse’s is going to resolve that right away. You both have to accept that things are going to be tense for a while, and that you won’t just be able to jump right into the healing process.
You can begin, but go slowly. It will be painful to share a home, a bed, a meal… They are the source of your pain, and that’s going to take time to get past.
4. You Can Make It Work
Affairs do NOT have to mean the end of a marriage. In fact, some marriages become even stronger after infidelity – first, because it exposes many of the unaddressed problems in the relationship, and second, because a couple who can get through it will have bolstered their communication, rebuilt trust, and forged an even more powerful commitment to one another.
5. You Can’t Do It Alone
Again, this is no small undertaking. You and your spouse both have to make the conscious choice that you want to work through this, that you want to develop a healthier marriage than you ever had before… That you want to build a relationship where something like this will never happen again.
This is far, far more likely to be a success with some outside help. Whether it’s using a system like ours, reading books, seeking individual professional support, or visiting marriage counseling together, you can gain valuable ideas and personalized advice for your unique relationship.
If your marriage is suffering in the wake of an affair, you first have to accept these truths before you begin to work toward solutions. It can be done, but it will take patience, perseverance, and some professional help. You can do it if you commit!
For more advice on how to strengthen your marriage, check out the StrongMarriageNow System today!
Dr. Dana Fillmore and Amy Barnhart, co-Founders, StrongMarriageNow.com