Betrayals & Affairs: Recovery for Couples
Affair and Infidelity Recovery
The discovery of your partner’s emotional or physical affair is devastating. It can turn your world upside down. You may wonder if your relationship and marriage can ever come back after this? Each couple determines what is a breach of trust in their relationship defining the context of the affair – whether it is an emotional or physical connection or online sexual encounters,
According to the research studies, it is possible to heal, repair, mend and rebuild your relationship. It is essential that the affair has ended and the door closed. Your first marriage is over. If you are both willing to commit to the process, then you now have the opportunity to create and establish a new relationship that will be built on a solid foundation.
Affair Contributing Factors
· Lack of attention and reciprocity in the relationship
· Unbalanced: one is giving, and the other taking
· Communication problems and issues
· Unable to emotionally connect with the partner
· Medical health conditions
· Mental health disorder
· Alcohol and substance use
· Avoidance attachment issues
· Life transitions: career, parenting, or midlife crisis
· Stress on the couple due to separations
· Military deployment
Discovery of Affair
The initial discovery of the infidelity is painful shocking to most partners. You may be feeling a double betrayal where your partner has become either emotionally or physically involved with your best friend. An emotional affair may be just as devastating as a sexual affair due to developing an intimate connection where you may begin to experience feelings of love which usually leads to a physical affair. You may be experiencing sexual betrayal trauma and become stuck in knowing all the details of the affair. Likewise, your partner may feel deep guilt, regret, and remorse and wonder whether you will ever be able to forgive them. It is most advantageous if you both must seek support through a therapist, a spiritual leader, family, and a trusted friend that you may confide in without blame, guilt, or judgment. Provide each other with space and time to process this information before making any permanent decision.s
Putting The Broken Pieces Back Together
Each couple is distinctive and unique, and deciding to commit to repairing and healing your relationship is a process that can take approximately six months to two years. The partner who committed the affair will need to end the affair with the third party and take ownership and responsibility for their behavior and actions. The partner who discovered the affair may develop PTSD Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder symptoms including anxiety, panic attacks, hypervigilance, sleep disturbance, nightmares, mood swings, and flashback images. Providing yourself and your partner with the gift of patience is an essential step on the road to recovering and rebuilding the connection, intimacy, and trust in your marriage.
Gottman Method Couples Therapy for Affairs & Trauma
Dr. John Gottman and Dr. Julie Gottman have conducted forty-plus years of empirical research studies with evidenced-based assessments, treatment planning, and interventions for relationships and PTSD trauma. Couples therapy for affair and infidelity repair and recovery can provide an inclusive, safe space that is non-blaming and non-judgemental in rebuild a stronger relationship and marriage. These include processing guilt, learning to forgive yourself and your partner, and facing your unmet needs that may have contributed to the affair. Additionally, reconciling the relationship problems and issues, learning communication skills, and conflict management.
Moreover, resolving the aftermath of the affair and its impact on the family, repairing the pain and hurt, and establishing a unified family. Ultimately, committing to rebuild trust and intimacy in establishing a caring and loving relationship. Healing from an affair takes commitment, patience, energy, and time. There is hope for establishing a deeper connection.
It is my privilege to help guide you along your path and journey in empowering you to rebuild a meaningful and satisfying relationship and protection from potential future betrayals.
Gordon KC, et al. (2005). Treating couples recovering from infidelity: An integrative approach. Journal of Clinical Psychology. 2005; doi:10.1002/jclp.20189.
Infidelity. American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. http://www.aamft.org/iMIS15/AAMFT/Content/Consumer_Updates/Infidelity.aspx. Accessed July 7, 2021.
Online infidelity. American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. https://www.aamft.org/Consumer_Updates/Online_Infidelity.aspx?WebsiteKey=8e8c9bd6-0b71-4cd1-a5ab-013b5f855b01. Accessed July 7, 2021.
Mao A, et al. (2009). Online infidelity: The new challenges to marriages. Indian Journal of Psychiatry; doi:10.4103/0019-5545.58299.
McCarthy B, et al. (2013). New strategies in assessing, treating, and relapse prevention of extramarital affairs. Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy; doi:10.1080/0092623X.2012.665820.
Scott SB, et al. (2013). Reasons for divorce and recollections of premarital intervention: Implications for improving relationship education. Couple Family Psychology; doi:10.1037/a0032025.