Infidelity: Steps in the Healing Journey

What does it take to heal from infidelity?

I asked my readers, in terms of what is helpful about some of my information. Here are some responses:

***I am learning how to control my mood and my feelings about my self. I just I could get my husband to think and open his eyes when it comes to the OP. I know that he will only see what he wants to see and I have to stay strong in my direction and continue working on myself. I am emotionally ready for whatever comes next. I know I will make it.

***I find some comfort in knowing i am not the only one. It has also helped prevent me to continue from doing some of the things (I love you’s, counseling)it said not to do.

***I have somewhat of a better understanding of why my husband’s affair happened.

***Acknowledging how I am feeling, knowing that my feelings are natural.

***I learned that I had to back off and let my husband come back to me on his own time–but he knew he was welcome to come back. I had to work on me–not my hubby–abut my problems that I knew had to change. I had to work on self-esteem so I wouldn’t be so needy.While talking things out my hubby is now willing to change jobs–his idea–his decision!!I learned how to listen to him and just be supportive–it worked he opened up more from the heart than he has in a long time!

***i have come to realize that the affair he is into is not my fault and that i can become a better person if only i stop feeling sorry for myself and be more realistic.

***It helped me getting a different perspective on what is happening in my marriage and in myself. I also helped me avoiding some things that I impulsively felt like doing that could actually jeopardize my goal. It gave me insight that I didn’t have and that made things somewhat more understandable.

Coping with Infidelity When It’s Not Going Well

What happens if the cheating spouse has seemingly no intentions of admitting the affair, is not remorseful, and fails for move off course of his/her destructive path?

How do you maintain yourself, keep your focus and keep the life of your family intact when this happens?

And, please remember, once we discover infidelity we tend to be hopeful that it will soon end and the marriage be restored. This does not always happen.

Here are some responses from my readers. Note I use the words “charging neutral” to describe a skill needed to intervene with the spouse and maintain ones’ equilibrium.

Reader #1:

1. What goals have you set for yourself and what got the best results to help you feel better and charge more neutral?

My goal is to close the gap in the broken circle that was once my family. i thought i needed my “husband” to make my circle complete but i am learning to close it myself. i have realized that the only person i can really count on is myself ( and my parents of course). i have focused on healing my children and i am getting a part time job.

2. Jot down a turning point between you and your partner that helped the two of you move in a positive direction. Tell the story, if you would.

Reader #2:

The turning point is me accepting the fact that he will never show “remorse” or take responsibility for his actions. this way i can dictate the provisions of his visitation with my children and state my financial needs and not feel greedy. i just decided that i have not had what i have needed or wanted for so long that it is now time for me. i have also realized that even though i am lonely, everything good i do will lead to something else.

He has made himself out to be the victim, even though he is the one who betrayed me and my family. It is infuriating to know that he has justified everything, and rationalized his behavior, to absolve his own guilt. For the sake of his adult children, I have asked him to face the truth, but he will not. … You asked for goals. My goal is to restore the relationship, which seems impossible at this point. For myself, I exercise regularly and that has been a great way to keep my stress under control and help me get the sleep I need. I pray daily and this helps keep me focused on my inner peace, knowing that I must rely on God for my strength and for guidance in making wise decisions. It is still very difficult to be around him because of his attitude, so mostly I avoid it. This gives few opportunities to “charge neutral.” Recently, I told him I will not tolerate the disrespectful way he treats me. He immediately said he does not disrespect me. I listed several actions that I find disrespectful. Since then he has stopped doing some of those things.

Reader #3:

1. What goals have you set for yourself and what got the best results to help you feel better and charge more neutral?

In my situation, I have tried to learn the lessons and take positive advice away from this. I am on a quest for spiritual growth and want to improve form the inside. I am not hiding form new relationship, but I want to be able to look at them and know for sure what I am getting into.

2. Jot down a turning point between you and your partner that helped the two of you move in a positive direction. Tell the story, if you would.

My wife of 15 years (53 years old) is deep into a mid life crisis. She has turned 18 all over. She ran off with a guy who does not even have a job, is an alcoholic, does drugs, and who knows what else. I tried for a year to work with her but to no avail. After reading Break Free and learning about the type of affair I was dealing with (my marriage made me do it) I came to the realization that Dr. Huizena’s advice about taking care of your self and improving your own life is the best way to handle all this mess. I had to laugh at myself when I read about the 12 things you should not do. I did them all. And I was feeling terrible about myself. I kept looking for the mistakes I had made that caused my marriage to fail. After reading the book, I started working on me. I am in counseling and am working on why I am the way I am. I probably will never see my ex wife again. I really do not care at this point. I am getting to the place that I feel good about me. I am pursuing my personal goals, have changed jobs (more money) and am just improving my life in all areas. Once I started working on me I realized that the affair issues were hers and not mine. She is living the life she created and I am much better off without her. Make no mistake it took a long time to see this and get to this point. I still have a ways to go. My ex has refused to acknowledge her role in all this and blames the marriage or me for our failure. What a load of horse hockey. The more I see her for what she is, the easier for me to move into a positive direction. Come to the point of knowing that it is not your fault and you did not do anything wrong to make your spouse have an affair. Look to your spiritual beliefs to help you move forward. I did. Take care of your self.

Coping with Infidelity and Abuse

One of my 7 types of affairs, “I Can’t Say No” often points to compulsive rigid patterns of behavior that only get more intense over time.

The focal point for the person becomes more and more the object of his/her addiction. It may be another person. It may be porn or strip clubs. It may be a variety of sexually acting out behaviors.

And, when confronted with the his/her behavior or fears that his/her object of addiction may be taken away, all h*** may break loose. Abusive and threatening behaviors are kicked in to keep the other person away from his/her fragility.

The spouse begins the process of deciding how to handle and manage the destructive behavior, which may have many forms.

Here are ways that 3 readers began managing the destructive behavior of his/her spouse:

I say “I’m sorry you feel that way”, then state the facts as I see them, I don’t defend (validate) or rebound the blame onto her (blame back)… it seems that over time it has lead to her “growing up” and really seeing things for what they actually are… I also remove myself from her (usually just other part of the house) after this, not to avoid or pout but to give her time to think (ALWAYS if there is ANY physical abuse which there can be I’m 6’2″ #220 and she is 5’9 150 so it CAN happen!!!)… doing this over the last year has lead to my wife realizing almost ALL of her demons and emotionally fallen to almost rock bottom which I hope will lead to her finally addressing them… of course I think to really be able to do this you have to re-build up your self esteem and know that whether you stay or go (divorce) that YOU will be OK…

Beginning to move on with my life. When on a couple of dates – nothing serious but ego and confident boosters. Finally telling him I can’t do this anymore after 2-yrs and I’m done and need to move on if he can’t stop. I believe I am dealing with a “I can’t say NO” affair. Its time for me to say NO MORE cuz nothing works. Going on a date did help me realize that I don’t have to keep stuck in this cycle anymore. It seems when I use feeling messages it helps to defuse the attacks but when my emotions kick in; I still get defensive. NO matter what he just doesn’t get my perspective only his needs are important.

Well i found out she was an alcoholic and drug addict, what has worked for me is attending Al-Anon and setting boundaries. I also started evaluating the things that were going on instead of just reacting to what was happening and found a lot of the things she was blaming me for was the way she truly felt about herself, her weight (she has gone through 4 wardrobes in the past 2 years because of weight gain), as for the chores and the kids she wasn’t doing any of them and had guilt that she couldn’t do anything for her family. I still am dealing with a lot of double standards but as they come up and are revealed I set boundaries and detach with love trying to keep my program as a top priority, as well as reading the bible when i feel stresses or just praying. I know that for me my religion went out the window when i was just reacting to the situations that would come up so now i try to turn it over to God and work my program. Not sure if this is what you were looking for but i know there isn’t much info for the Husband of an alcoholic / unfaithful wife.