Has your partner cheated on you? If so, you’re devastated and apt to jump into an impulsive decision. When my husband cheated, my first thought was to get the hell out! To slam the door on our twenty year marriage and be done with him and our relationship. I was so angry.
It’s tempting to simply cut and run. You’re shocked, humiliated, angry, hurt and all you want to do is preserve your ego and let the bastard/bitch go. But in the long run, an impulsive decision just might haunt you down the line. You might cut ties only to find that you made a big mistake. That your anger kept you from seeing the good in your relationship and now it’s too late.
As for me, my clearer head eventually prevailed. Realizing that I could use the crisis to learn about myself, I chose to give it time. Sure, a knee-jerk response might have given temporary satisfaction to my poor bruised ego, but it wouldn’t have given me the insights and wisdom that I eventually gained from letting the process unfold.
Going through the “adventure” consciously—exploring myself, our relationship, my husband’s motivation—gave me valuable insights. I learned it was easy to blame him, but that I had a part in creating the circumstances that led to what happened. Yes, he betrayed me, but I betrayed myself as well. How? By making too many compromises so that I wasn’t getting what I needed. I settled for less and fooled myself into thinking I was getting enough. There were other issues, but my point here is that I didn’t act impulsively.
Today, because I chose reflection, I’m happy to report that my husband and I have forged a loving, trusting relationship. One that’s better than before. Infidelity brings a huge upheaval to your life. It feels horrible at the time, but it gives you an opportunity to reach a new level of being. The greater the upheaval, the greater the opportunity.
When your heart is cracked wide open you have to choose: do I want to fill it with anger and bitterness? Or with love? I chose love. But that doesn’t mean I denied the other stuff: rage and ice cold razor blade fear, which led to blaming, threatening, sneaking…you name it. But it was only through allowing all of it that I got to the other side. Growing, getting better was always my goal. And even though I didn’t always take the high road, I never lost sight of my goal.
What are you going to choose? The easy, cut-and-run way? Or the harder, more mindful, conscious way that ultimately leads to a deeper, more satisfying life…with or without your partner? It’s up to you!
Check out my book, The Affair: From Breakdown to Breakthrough, A Therapist’s Real-life Journey, to learn how my husband and I got through our crisis and made our bond ever stronger. You can buy it on Kindle worldwide from all Amazon websites, including www.amazon.com