Should I Try to Save My Marriage? Healing after infidelity

Written by: Steve Knight

Infidelity is undoubtedly one of the most devastating things to happen to any marriage. The unexpected shock and feelings of betrayal that ensue are often too much for some to deal with, causing them to feel as if they have no choice but to seek a divorce. Although repairing a relationship after such an upheaval is certainly no easy feat, it doesn't have to be impossible. If you've already asked yourself that heart-stopping question, "Should I even bother trying to save my marriage?" consider the following before you make any permanent decisions.

The emotional roller coaster that one often experiences after their spouse has been unfaithful may at first seem as if it will never end. One minute you may feel pure anger, while the next you're in a state of disbelief, only to be followed by a deep rooted pain that has the power to take your breath away. But in all actuality, it's only you that has the power to control your reaction to the affair, and whether or not you feel the marriage is worth saving. You are also the only one who can gauge whether or not this transgression is one that you'll be able to live with, or if you truly believe the marriage has been irreparably damaged.

So often marriage counselors hear the statement, "I have no choice but to try and save my marriage, we have children together." While to a degree, this is definitely true, but only in certain situations. The long standing notion that married couples must never divorce if they've had a child together is now being seen for what it truly is, a fallacy. There is no child who will benefit from living in a hostile environment, or one that's wrought with anger and discord. The same is true for relationships where abuse is involved, regardless if it is physical or mental.

It is often said that one of the best predictors of future behavior, is of course, past behavior. This isn't to say that change is not a possibility, as anyone is able to stay true to their word, it's merely a matter of doing it, and how willing they are to prove themselves trustworthy. Equally as important is how willing their partner is to forgive, and allow them the chance to prove themselves worthy of one more chance.

Working through infidelity isn't supposed to give the betrayed partner the right use this mistake as a "weapon" or reason to make life miserable for all involved. If that's on your agenda, perhaps it's best to move on, for everyone's sake. If, however, you have decided to do your best to salvage your marriage, then by all means, look deep within yourself and tap into the strength you never knew you had in order to put forth your best efforts at mending what has been broken.

Seek professional counseling if you feel you are ready to benefit from the healing process therapy can bring, or simply surround yourself with comforting people who at least attempt understand what you're going through, and offer a kind shoulder. There are also many web sites, groups and forums devoted to marriage, relationships and other related issues online, as well as informative advice and guidance for those dealing with infidelity.


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