The impact on the lives of those who practice infidelity is enormous. It violates the integrity, trust, and commitment upon which marriage is based. When two people enter into a committed relationship, they make a promise to love and honor each other. This involves making a heart-felt promise to work through the problems that are sure to arise within the relationship. To break that promise means dishonoring the trust of the person who has agreed to live with you and build a life together. When an extramarital affair is discovered, a crisis ensues. Now the question is – can this relationship continue? Depending on how this crisis is dealt with by both partners, the relationship does have a chance to continue. In some cases, this relationship crisis serves as a watershed event that opens the door to self-examination and honest communication that may put the relationship on stronger ground.
In my opinion, it is extremely difficult for couples to get through this without professional help. There are too many places for each partner to get stuck. The betrayed partner asks many questions, often the same question over and over—why? The partner who has the affair, recommits to the primary relationship but grieves the loss of the affair partner—why? These are just two examples of topics that need to be handled with care.
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