Overcoming Infidelity: 3 Reasons Your Spouse Can’t Move Past Your Affair

BY: - 17 Feb '17 | Infidelity

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Someone was recently sharing with me that she was in a relationship where her husband cheated. So, she decided to cheat as well and now they are struggling to get past the situation.  She has moved forward and she wants her marriage to work.  When her husband becomes frustrated with the situation, he brings up her infidelity.  The conversation becomes heated, they start fighting “dirty” and they create more problems than they had at first.  They aren’t talking to each other, they are talking at each other, with no real communication.

Here 3 reasons why this couple is not able to move past their affair.

1. They Blame Their Spouse for the Affair

When you are upset and you fight dirty, you might say things like “If you weren’t out chasing those women, I wouldn’t have had to step out.”  There might be truth in that statement, but there is no accountability or responsibility in it.

Acknowledge to your spouse (multiple times, if necessary) that what you did was something you made the decision to do.  It was wrong and you sincerely apologize.   Show that you are cognizant that you were wrong, it was a conscious decision, and it was a mistake which won’t happen again.  The important takeaway here is that you hold yourself accountable to your spouse and you are sincere in your apology, and just as sincere in the fact it won’t happen again.

2. There is No Forgiveness.

This one is a tough one.  There are times in situations like the one I described where we may have to forgive, yet we haven’t been forgiven.  We have to make decisions to make a change in marriages.  Marriage is worth fighting for.  We know our marriages are worth the battle, so we have to fight in the best way we know how-with love, honor and respect.  We don’t forgive to be forgiven, we forgive because it’s the right thing to do.  It may take time for your spouse to come around, if ever.  While this point is true, it’s irrelevant to the fact we must forgive, work to rebuild trust, learn again to respect your spouse and honor the position they hold in our lives.  If you want a chance to move forward beyond infidelity in marriage, you have to forgive. Here is what Dr. George James, licensed marriage and family therapist and BMWK Infidelity expert, says about forgiveness:

“The betrayal you’re experiencing is difficult, but are you working on your anger. Like I said, it’s okay to be angry in the beginning, but you should be working on it so it’s not as intense especially if you’re the person who’s been betrayed. Try to think about what happened from your partner’s side. How can you forgive? How can you express what you want and need as you move forward? Don’t let your anger speak for you, ask for what you want.”

3. They Don’t Have Boundaries

If your husband has been stepping out on you, it goes without saying you’re going to have a hard time trusting him.  If you have been “out on the town” so to speak, the same holds true for him.  Back to the scenario which is the topic of the article, the husband continues to have the deeper struggle with moving forward.  I think in this scenario, its key for them to agree to boundaries.  If she has any connection to her former flame, it needs to be broken off.  This could be deeper than deleting a number out of a cell phone.  This may mean changing jobs, churches, schools, or even moving to another neighborhood or city.  If you have done something to break your spouse’s trust, it’s not going to be easy to regain.  Make the point to set a boundary which works for them (may not work for you, but this is the consequence you must accept for your actions).  Embrace the new boundary and respect it to the utmost.

You both made the decision to stay, which means you believe your marriage is worth fighting for.  So, you both must do everything possible to bring the love, respect and loyalty back to your marriage.

About the author

Jay Hurt wrote 85 articles on this blog.

Jay Hurt is a Relationship Coach, columnist and author of the book, The 9 Tenets of a Successful Relationship (http://9tenetsonline.com/about-the-book ). Jay’s focus is working with people who want to design better relationships and get more out of life!

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The Only Way to Restore and Rejuvenate Your Marriage After an Affair

BY: - 13 Mar '17 | Infidelity

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After the trust has been broken in your marriage, in order to really move forward with getting your relationship back on track, we have to talk about reestablishing trust. It’s the only way to restore and rejuvenate your relationship and get it to where it used to be and sometimes in even a greater place. In order to do that, we have to start from the very beginning. 

We do that by looking at the entire relationship and rebuild brick by brick, piece by piece. Sometimes this step can be very difficult. And trust is a necessary ingredient for your relationship, which is why we need to rebuild it. That’s why couple’s need to spend so much time on this particular area of reestablishing trust. We have to go back to beginning.

Go Back to the Beginning

ToHaveaBetterRelationshipPinterestWhat worked in the beginning? How did you both date? How did you both decide to get together? What did you like? What were you doing and what weren’t you doing? Some of the couples I’ve worked with think that because they’ve been together for a while, they should be able to quickly overcome broken trust, such as an affair, and move forward quickly.

But when you break trust and have an affair, the trust goes right down to zero.  And and as much as you don’t like it, it’s like starting over from day one. It’s like starting from ground zero.  When you first met your spouse, you had to do all these things to allow them to feel like they could trust you, and that’s what you’re gonna have to do again.

For some people, the struggle is that they want this to happen quickly.

Most of us do, we want things to happen in a very fast way, we want things to move from step one to the last step. Trying to quit smoking, trying to lose weight, getting a new job, or even having a  baby are things that we just want to happen quickly…but they don’t. The same thing is true with overcoming the impact of infidelity or broken trust in your marriage.  Sometimes we want it to move quickly, and that’s usually the person that’s betrayed their spouse. I’ve also seen it with those who have been betrayed where they’re like,

“When is this gonna stop?”

“When is this gonna be over?”

“When can we get back to being the way that we used to?”

I want you to realize that it takes time.

It’s not an overnight process.  You didn’t trust each other overnight. Usually, there was a set of things that happened along the way that allowed you to feel safe enough to trust each other.

I can’t give you a concrete time of how long it’s going to take to overcome infidelity, but what I’ve seen with the couples that I’ve worked with over the past 15 years, is that it takes about 9 to 12 months to heal.

If I had to give you a ballpark (and this is not something that I’m saying is scientific, but more of what I’ve seen in my practice) then I would say that the first three months is rocky, it’s tough, it’s overwhelming, and that’s where we’re really trying to rebuild trust.

Three to six months, you start to feel that some of the trust is really coming back and both people are in it, you start to have better times and they last a little bit longer.

Six to nine months, you start to feel much better about the relationship and start to work through other things that might have been there.

And then 9 to 12 months, you see yourself moving in a great direction where your relationship can actually be better than it ever was.

I’ve seen people work to reestablish trust, make some clear decisions, and now they’re at a great place, they are really connected with each other and it is more of a “we against the world” instead of an “I versus you” situation.

This why reestablishing trust is so important and it is the foundation of everything else that you are going to do in your marriage.  And it is impossible to get your relationship to this place, this 9 to 12 month place that I’m talking about if you don’t take the time to reestablish trust. Don’t move quickly and don’t brush it off.  Take your time by starting from the beginning and rebuilding.

Dr. George James, LMFT speaks, counsels, consults, coaches and teaches people how to overcome difficult relationships problems and build successful happy connections. James has been a reoccurring expert on many radio, TV and online programs. He is also a reoccurring relationship contributor to Ebony magazine. James is a staff therapist and an AAMFT-approved supervisor at Council For Relationships.  Find out more about Dr. George James at GeorgeTalks.com.

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