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Recovering From Betrayal
If you are interested in saving your marriage after an affair, there are a number of steps you should take to begin the healing process. Further, you must keep in mind that recovering from an affair is not an overnight process, nor is it something that can be accomplished within a matter of days. Rather, recovering from an affair can take months or even years, therefore you must hold onto the faith that you can recover your marriage.
If you have found out that your partner has had an affair, along with questioning why, you may want to know who they had an affair with and for how long. Nevertheless, in considering such questions it is imperative that you brace yourself for the answer as you more than likely will not like what your spouse tells you. Conversely, if you allow your spouse to be totally honest with you about what occurred, you will not be surprised later when the truth is revealed—and as luck may have it—the truth is almost always revealed in one form or another. Thus, to begin the healing process in your marriage, you must open the door and allow the truth to enter—as ugly as that truth may be.
In order to begin the path to healing, the spouse that is having the affair must agree to completely sever the relationship. Emphasis is placed on the word “completely” here; individuals that partake in a martial affair cannot simply remain friends, thus the relationship must end if the marriage in question is to possess the possibility of survival. Further, because one spouse has been betrayed, that individual will be on guard; they will attempt to protect themselves emotionally by questioning the cheating spouse’s actions and behaviours repeatedly. Therefore, a spouse that has cheated will have to be patient with the spouse that may seem accusatory.
Counselling can assist greatly in the healing process. A professional counsellor can assist you with overcoming the emotional pain and anxiety that accompanies betrayal and can further help you and your spouse make amends. Conversely, sharing the fact that your spouse has betrayed you with family and friends may not necessarily be a good idea; in doing so, too many opinions and personal feelings may enter into the mix and can distract the couple from the healing process—or worse—end the possibility of healing altogether. Therefore, when attempting to save your marriage, save your counselling sessions for a professional that has no emotional bonds or personal attachments to either individual involved in the relationship.
Regardless of who had the affair, both individuals will require quite a bit of patience. The spouse that has been betrayed will need to overcome the immense hurt they feel and the spouse that has betrayed their partner will need to successfully overcome their guilt. Needless to say, the process of healing is a difficult one, and both individuals need to be willing to deal with the issues that arise as they occur. In the end, re-establishing the trust you once had in one another can happen, if you possess the patience and love necessary to allow such a healing process to occur.
Finally, forgiveness will be the hardest part of the healing process. The spouse that has been betrayed will have to forgive their partner for being unfaithful, and the spouse that has been unfaithful will have to forgive themselves to overcome their own guilt. Yet, in the process of forgiveness, you and your spouse can find renewal in your relationship and thereby successful begin the healing process.