Pages - Menu

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Affair Recovery

I put this together some time ago but never posted it. I found it while sorting through a bunch of unfinished blog entries I have been working on and decided to polish it off and post it. As always, the full article can be found here as I have edited some parts out for length.

Affair Recovery - Oprah Show on Cheating Husbands by Anne and Brian Bercht.

… Infidelity is a topic that strikes at the very core of human emotions, so it goes without saying that people hardly feel neutral about it…

The main and most hurtful ingredient of affairs is the lying and secrecy. In fact you cannot have an affair without having lies and deception. Secrecy is to affairs what sunlight and water is to plants. As long as we keep affairs secret, we as a society are promoting their growth. After witnessing the tremendous pain affairs cause to all 3 people in an affair triangle, to the children, to extended family and friends and on and on and on… it’s evident that affairs are a horrible, deceptive and destructive force in our society…

Why do men (and women) have affairs?

There were reasons which had nothing to do with the marriage or the faithful spouse and everything to do with the character weaknesses of the person having the affair:

- Because it strokes your ego when someone else pays attention to you
- Selfishness/the lure of temporary pleasure
- Provided confirmation, a need fulfilled
- Admiration, the “Adoring Eyes”

Brian explained his draw to the other woman as a “pulling toward”. She made him feel like a king. It was a fantasy. He was attracted to how HE was FEELING, not the other woman…
  
There can be no doubt that we all need to pay attention to our marriage relationships.

Men don’t have affairs just for sex! Men stray from their wives because of how the other woman made them FEEL… Yes, a happily married man can stray... There can be unmet needs and unhappiness in a marriage which makes a man (or woman) look for needs to be met outside the marriage (which still doesn’t justify the behavior), but there doesn’t HAVE to be anything wrong in a marriage for a man/woman to stray.

All marriages are vulnerable to affairs. This does not mean that married couples should start living in fear that it will happen to them, but it does mean they should stop being na├»ve and judgmental of others…

The men were not having affairs because they weren’t getting enough at home! The other woman was NOT extra special! In the person’s mind the affair seems right at the time. An unfaithful spouse justifies and compartmentalizes their behavior…

Affairs are one big gigantic lie. The definition of lying is not only knowingly giving wrong information, it includes withholding relevant information. If a spouse has had an affair it’s relevant to the relationship. How can anyone think the solution to affairs then is to keep it a secret from their spouse? How can more lying being the cure for lying?

…the cheating husband tells more truth to the mistress than to his wife. In other words the mistress gains a “window” into the marriage. The wife gets only a “wall” into the affair. In order to heal a marriage the window and the wall must be reversed. The wife must get the truth and the mistress must be cut out…

Cheating is reckless behavior … and those engaging in it just aren’t thinking!...

Way to go Oprah for saying “You got to tell the truth!” You cannot even begin to heal a marriage until you have full disclosure. An un-confessed affair in a marriage is like undiagnosed cancer. It will eat away at each cell of the marriage until it destroys it.

We still love each other! Your genuine feelings of love for a person don’t just disappear, because there has been a betrayal of trust. We who’ve been betrayed don’t appreciate the unsolicited advice from people who tell us we should leave our unfaithful spouses and we are weak for staying. What right do you have to tell us what we should do? Do you walk in our shoes? Will you live with the outcome of the decisions we make? The choice belongs to us … the crisis of an affair can in time become a gift. It’s an opportunity to get it right. And staying with someone because you still love them is a dam good reason!...

Not all relationships are salvageable after an affair. Not all unfaithful spouses are willing to change. Always judge the behavior, not the words…