The key to moving on as a couple after infidelity is simple: change. You might think that seems obvious. One part of the couple has betrayed the other’s trust, clearly he or she needs to change. At a minimum, the change needs to involve stopping the affair and resolving to never do it again. What can be harder to accept, however, is that if your spouse has cheated on you, and you truly want to remained married, then you might need to change as well.
Filling the gap
There are many reasons why a husband may go behind his wife’s back or vice versa. In general though, we can say that he or she is looking for something that wasn’t there within the marriage itself. Sometimes that might be something that he or she has no right to ask for, or something impossible to give. Often, however, it will be something they do have the right to expect, or something that they genuinely need. The first condition for saving a marriage is that the cheating party needs to be willing to change, to become more honest and faithful. The second condition is that the cheated-on party can get beyond feelings of hurt and look honestly at what changes they need to make and whether they are willing to make them.
A satisfying for marriage, for both of you
Let’s say that particular husband cheats on his wife because he craves feelings or intimacy, warmth or love he has been missing at home. In the best case scenario, he realizes that he has been doing wrong, confesses and sets out to remain faithful from now on. What happens if nothing else changes? One likely outcome is that he will give in to temptation a few years down the line. Another outcome, arguably even worse, is that he will become bitter and distant, and he will argue with his wife more and more until they find life together intolerable. Sadly, if the underlying issues are not resolved, some marriages can become even more unhappy when both partners are being completely faithful.
Recovering from an affair together
There are many stumbling blocks for couples looking to rebuild their life together after infidelity. First, the cheater may not really understand what it was he or she was really looking for in the affair. Secondly, they may be unable to honestly tell their spouse what it was. Finally, the other party may not understand the problem or be willing to hear it. The key to successful couples therapy after an affair is getting to the heart of the problem and allowing the couple to speak and listen to each other honestly, and with love. If your spouse has had an affair, or if you have had an affair yourself, and want to find lasting happiness in a fulfilling marriage, contact our practice today.