The day after “Lemonade” debuted I awoke to the masses wanting to quench their Lemonade thirst on my Facebook timeline! Having not been a big “B” fan I had to do some research, having missed the big HBO debut. However, I was able to locate a free trial via Tidal (which is owned by Beyoncé & Jay-Z; do you see how genius and strategic this power couple played this?).
I watched while being rather intrigued by her level of transparency on what seemed to be a very personal journey of betrayal, revenge and reconciliation with her husband. There is no way to know if all that was true or just for drummed up for sales. But if infidelity did happen in their marriage, I give Jay-Z credit in his transparency too. Because it was obvious to me (and confirmed online by Beyoncé’ later) he was heavily involved in this work of art.
This led me to ponder: What were the conversations that took place between Bey and Jay? It reminded me of what I’m sure were the same conversations that took place between my husband and I as we prepared to share intimate details of our affairs on national TV via the show “Unfaithful: Stories of Betrayal,” which was broadcasted to millions around the world on the Oprah Winfrey Network.
But on a side note: I can’t speak for the Carters and their motives for going public. My husband and I didn’t consider our openness to disclose our personal infidelities as “airing our dirty laundry.” Rather we saw it as empowering marriages all over the world to fight for their marriages because there is true healing and love after adultery.
But getting back to my point: Because we very publicly revealed our marriage difficulties, I could appreciate Beyoncé being an open book on national TV, setting herself and her marriage FREE while empowering marriages. There is a great deal of power in transparency!
Power to be free is derived from the truth, and sometimes the very harsh truth of infidelity. I have a saying in my business, and that is “You cannot conquer what you are not willing to confront.” So as long as you act like the affair is not taking place, it is conquering you rather than you conquering it. However, when you make the decision to CONFRONT, meaning to face the harsh reality head-on, then only in that moment, can you get out in front of the affair. I’m a firm believer in being transparent because it empowers you as individuals and as a couple to stand firmly in your power. Transparency makes it that much easier to get over these seven emotional trials being: Guilt, Shame, Fear, Anger, Hopelessness, Condemned and Loneliness.
As in the case of Bey and Jay along with my husband and I, we took back our power and stood up to the world. After our story debuted I took LIVE questions from people via social media…and oh yeah, it turned all the way LIVE when people wanted to give me their 2 cents and what I should and should not have done, but honey ask me if I entertained that…absolutely not! Why? Because me and my husband had already prepared via our conversations for such shenanigans—likely just the way The Carters had done.
But is revealing a private matter such as infidelity a good idea for all marriages? Should Beyoncé and Jay Z receive public praise for “coming out” or do you think they built themselves a private prison due to the aftermath?
Should you “come out” to outsiders regarding a spouse’s affair? By outsiders, I mean anyone outside of the marriage. As this is a very private decision, and there is no cookie cutter approach. With affairs, I strongly encourage getting crystal clear in putting things in the proper perspective first before making this or any decision.
When it is all said and done, the only ones who will have to live with the consequence of such decisions are you and your husband, not your family or friends or even the public–who will quickly offer their 2 cents at the drop of a dime (no pun intended). If the singer’s “Lemonade” is to be taken as truth, then I applaud Beyoncé and Jay Z for turning a negative into a positive; and now they are making bank on people’s 2 cents.
But before you reveal your own truths, regarding your spouse’s affair, here are some factors to consider:
SILENT SUFFERING PROHIBITED:
When you’re in pain, it’s hard to keep things inside. Sometimes you need to share your thoughts with someone else, particularly when you can’t or are not ready to share with the spouse who hurt you. In this case, it is wise to confide in a TRUSTED source.
The gossip websites would have us to believe Solange was her sister’s confidant during “Elevatorgate.” For me that source was a very close friend and her husband, who were both friends to me and my husband. These were people who I KNEW not only could I trust but most importantly people who I KNEW had been in my/our shoes!
- PAUSE and THINK, who can I confide in BEFORE just running your mouth to any and every one out of hurt or revenge.
- Make sure they are a TRUSTED source for you and preferably your spouse too.
- Select someone who has been in your shoes AND has successfully navigated the affair, coming out on the other side (preferably happily)
CONTEMPLATE NEXT STEPS:
Can you imagine what a disaster it could have been if Jay-Z didn’t know and/or wasn’t on board with “Lemonade”? The Carters would have had to deal with all the critics, pessimists and self-proclaimed social media therapists while they were in the process of dealing with their problems.
Navigating the aftermath of an affair can be tricky. Emotions are high. Damage has been done to your relationship’s foundations. Be mindful in taking the time you need to make wise decisions about what’s right for you and yours. Though you might want to pull away or act out in revenge, you’ll want to discuss the next course of action together. You’ll thank yourself later.
You might forgive your spouse (as it seems Beyoncé did) or you may decide the marriage is irreparable.
If you decide to heal your relationship, will the person you’re confiding in also be able to forgive your spouse? Sometime it’s easier to forgive an offense against ourselves, than it is an offense against someone you love. If you’ve previously discussed your marital problems, then insists to that person that he/she respect your decision.
YOUR MARRIAGE NEEDS PROTECTION WHILE IT HEALS
It’s encouraging to know when a bone is broken and heals properly; the place where it heals is actually stronger than before the injury. In the same way, your marriage when healed properly can be stronger than before, but left unattended would be like a person with a broken arm who never gets it set back in place. The untreated arm could never be used as it was intended again, and would remain a painful source of regret and irritation.
Before you can experience the freedom of going public with your marital problems, you must be sure you’ve properly healed. The outside influences and 2-cent commentators will tear at your wounds until they are broken again. But if you found true healing from your marriage’s past infidelity, then you, too, are ready to turn those lemons into lemonade.
BMWK, should you tell others about your spouse’s affair?