How To Put The Pain Behind You

In one of our monthly calls, we tackled the tough subject of getting over the pain – putting those hurtful memories of affairs and altercations behind you. Holding onto to painful grudges can lead to long-term trouble in a relationship. Even if the problem has been addressed, apologies made, many people have a hard time letting go of the pain, even as years pass by. They will continue to hold it over their partner’s head, and this isn’t healthy for any relationship.

One of the points Dr. Dana stresses is the “ah-ha” moment, when one partner truly understands how the other felt – this is absolutely key in getting past any major issues in the relationship. When you are hurt, you want your partner to understand why.

Holding grudges isn’t healthy for any relationship.
Holding grudges isn’t healthy for any relationship.

Call it a “moment of clarity” if you like. It happens when the two halves of a couple can empathize with one another, and understand how certain behaviors or actions might make the other feel. Or, in some cases, it might mean understanding why or how an affair happened, or what factors led to a negative change in the bedroom. It’s all about being on the same page.

As our phone call wrapped up, there were an incredible amount of questions, all of them tackling some BIG issues. These callers really did something brave here. It’s tough to talk about the hard parts of your life!

One of the toughest questions was, “How do you deal with flashbacks after an affair?” This man couldn’t shake the image of his wife in bed with another man. Dr. Dana’s advice was twofold: First, don’t let yourself get on that train of thought. Teach yourself to see it coming, and simply don’t get on the train – make a point to replace those negative thoughts with something else. Part two: replace those memories with new, good ones! The couple is back together, working to get past the affair, and one way to do that is reconnecting in the bedroom.

Other questions included how to “help her get over the resentment,” how to deal with, “a spouse who has anger issues,” and “a husband who doesn’t admit they did wrong.” While there are plenty of specifics for each of these problems, it goes back to the “ah-ha” moment, and finding some empathetic middle ground with your partner.

If any of these concerns apply to you, this is just a small portion of the advice contained in our monthly call, each centered on a theme, culminating in an open Q&A with our marriage advice expert! To gain access to the monthly call, direct help from Dr. Dana, and our extensive member’s forum, check out the StrongMarriageNow system today!


Dr. Dana Fillmore and Amy Barnhart, co-Founders,

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mollie 11 years ago

I follow your emails and I am in a situation where there is an affair in process, my husband is having an affair and has left the house in january, he is still seeing this girl and at the present time we have no contact.....He at the present time does not know what he wants, I have tried to talk to him, and he always seem to be confused....Im really not sure what to do, I want to try and make this work, but how can you work on a marriage when there is a third part involved. He is confused I understand, he does not want a divorce, which I already filed.....My life is in libo and not sure what to do.........PLEASE HELP...

John Plocharczyk 11 years ago

Hello mollie, my name is John... My wife of 25 years left the house a few months ago when I discovered the same thing. I want our marriage to survive as well. I try and try to fight for this, but we have little to know contact. I heard all the excuses, I'm confused, I need space, it's my time etc.... I'm now living as a single parent with two kids in college...I do not plan on filling for divorce just yet, as I have faith and hope that she will wake up before its to late. Until that time, I'm living my life and enjoying myself. Best of luck Girl.

Mischelle 11 years ago

I am struggling with the same issue. My husband left me because he was having an affair. Recently be came back saying he was very sorry and made all kinds of promises and said he would never hurt me again. After only two months of being back, he left without any warning saying he still had feelings for the other woman. I am devastated and don't know what to do. He saying he has to following his heart. I want my marriage to work but I just don't know what I can do to save it. Any advice?

Mike_Olsen_SMN 11 years ago

Hi Mischelle, Surviving an affair is very difficult. Please watch our video "7 Steps to Surviving an Affair" There are many other helpful videos linked to this page. Best of luck!

John 10 years ago

Well, here I am one year later, another year on paper to mark 26 years of marriage only to end in a Divorce... She filed for the divorce in April and the shit show ended in August of this year. Funny thing, the way my wife handled things was like a complete COWARD. She never once sat down with me to discuss our feelings. I believe that she felt she had no choice but to follow through with this. You see way back early on in my marriage she cheated. I can only assume that she was always a cheater. She always hung out with our group of friends after we split up, now one of these couples are going through the same thing. She even had her friend move in with her. I can not understand for the life of me why these women think the grass is always greener. I provided a great family life and home, now she will have her own house to call home... Kids are still with me, and she just basically checked out of all responsibility. "It's all about me" Well baby, I hope you see this post & hope that you and Mare are finding your happiness in the "BLUE" best of luck to anyone that hears the words "space, independence etc" at this point its way to late as they have already checked out and found someone that will use and toss them to the side. Best of Luck Julie, John

Mike_Olsen_SMN 10 years ago

Hi John - I'm sorry to hear it ended that way for you. I wish you the best of luck in the future, and hope you find your happiness. Good for you for being the rock your children need.