More on Affair Recovery
Affairs have the ability to completely upend our lives. Because the pain of an affair can be so great, many trauma experts agree that the symptoms associated with one are akin to a traumatic experience. Those symptoms may include depression, sadness, hypervigilance, anxiety, hopelessness, sleeplessness, anger, nightmares and many more. Which may leave you wondering, "Can we ever come back from this?"
The answer to that question is: It depends.
Are you and your partner willing to put in the necessary work? Are you open to having hard conversations?
Are you both in this together?
If the answer to those questions is "yes", then there's certainly hope.
First of all, you aren't alone in this experience.
It's easy to feel a great amount of shame and loneliness, no matter if you were the spouse who cheated or were cheated on. Some estimates show that nearly 70-80% of married couples will struggle with the issue of infidelity over the course of their marriage. Affairs have been a thing since, well, marriage became a thing. But this isn't a pass to betray your spouse. This just simply means that you're not alone in this problem, and if that many people have experienced it and overcome it, then there's certainly hope for you too.
Affair Recovery can help you and your partner heal and rebuild a new relationship.
The fascinating thing about affairs is that they often serve as a wake-up call for the entire relationship system. There were things going unsaid, unnoticed, undone, unfelt. You can't really keep things hidden in the shadows anymore in the aftermath of an affair. If both parties are willing to move forward together, it's possible that this could be the start to an entirely new relationship with one another. Will the road be easy? No. Will it be a perfect science? Absolutely not. Will it take lots of work? You bet your ass it will. But it CAN be done. On the behalf of the partner who cheated, you will need to take accountability for your actions, explore your internal (probably unknown) motivations for stepping out on your marriage, take the necessary steps to regain your partner's trust and be a willing participant in the therapeutic process. As for the partner who was cheated on, you will have to learn how to express your hurt in productive ways, be willing to understand your partner's decisions, work towards forgiving your partner, and also be a willing participant in therapy. Please keep in mind that it can take on average anywhere from12-36 months to truly find relief after an affair.
Affair Recovery is an investment in your relationship and in yourself.
And if you have children, you're investing in them as well. Working through your issues, processing through your collective pain and choosing to understand each other will yield much better results than stuffing things away, shutting down, incessantly fighting and resenting one another. Therapy isn't always rainbows and unicorns, I promise you that. But having a therapist present to help you sort through your thoughts and hold you accountable can be such a huge step in getting over this hump.