Do Affairs Really Have To End A Marriage?

Do Affairs Really Have To End A Marriage or Relationship?  There are many reasons why an affair occurs. It is most important to understand that an affair affects both people in a relationship.  The healing process can lead a couple to deeper levels of intimacy or a closeness they’ve never shared before.  For Couples who want to rebuild their relationship after one partner has had an affair it is imperative both parties, despite their own personal pain, try and look within themselves to see how their own behavior contributed to the demise of the once happy and working union.  I am not suggesting the Hurt Partner is to blame in any way.

Do Affairs Really Have To End A Marriage?

I am only recommending taking a look at how each person in the partnership may have brought implicit or explicit neglect or abuse into the spiraling down dynamics of their relationship.  I’m not talking about chronic Philanderers or people who have continuous affairs, they’re in an entirely different category.  I’m referring to those who have had an isolated incident in one affair that is creating the need for change within the relationship.

In working with couples who do take a look at their individual part of this devastating situation prognosis is typically better than those who would rather blame the person who had the affair by continuing to berate that person in how they have made their life miserable. Do Affairs Really Have To End A Marriage?

When you’re ready to take a look at what happened to the relationship it would be good to seek the help of a Marriage Counselor or Couples Counselor who specializes in Affair Recovery and helping couples get through the process of determining whether they can or want to stay together or move on.  In Couples Counseling the couple will need to acknowledge the problems prior to the affair as sometimes the affair could be a symptom of some other underlying problem.  Just because infidelity strikes your marriage doesn’t mean it has to end in a separation or divorce.  Often times an affair can be the best thing that ever happened to a relationship as it brings an end to a relationship that wasn’t working and gives the couple an opportunity to develop a new relationship by developing a New Monogamy.

A new monogamy explicitly says what is wanted and what is not wanted in moving forward. It helps with affair prevention because both parties discuss and document the specifics on how to behave more appropriately. Marriages don’t have to end because someone stepped out and had an affair.  Marriages don’t have to end due to betrayal.  I have been providing affair recovery services for over 20 years. Because the couples I work with allow me to take them through the affair recovery process, I have a more than 90% success rate. Very few divorce. Nobody wants to leave their primary relationship. Couples have a history together, some may have children, financial resources, and great memories. Affair recovery puts things into perspective, and with time marriages are salvaged.

 

For more information on developing the relationship you have always wanted please call me (858) 735-1139.

I Said I’d Never Stay With A Partner Who Cheated On Me

I said I’d never stay with a partner who cheated on me.  We’ve all made this statement sometime in our relationship life.  “I Said I’d Never Stay With A Partner Who Cheated On Me.”  Who would want to stay with a spouse/partner who cheated on them? Obvious answer, “No one.”  But that question is not as black and white as one would think.  You may instinctively already know that infidelity is much more complicated than our culture admits.  That there are more choices in the aftermath than just separating or divorcing.  Affairs can be shocking and painful, no doubt, and can often cause untold damage.  However, for some couples, an affair may also be the path to strength and to a renewed and stronger relationship.

I Said I’d Never Stay With A Partner Who Cheated On Me

If individuals are confused about whether or not to stay together Couples Counseling with a trained Therapist in Infidelity recovery can help explore the options of giving your relationship another chance.

There are different components of an affair which include an outside emotional relationship, dishonesty, and a sexual relationship.  The outside emotional relationship is where a secondary relationship appears to be more important than the primary relationship where your partner’s affection for this other person is now a threat to your relationship.  Dishonesty is the deceitful behavior of lying, denying, or hiding evidence of an affair that destroys trust. The sexual relationship is the worst injury for most as a line of physical intimacy has been crossed and devastates a person’s self-esteem.

When an affair is discovered the immediate response is disbelief, anger, grief, loss, or sadness.  It can take several years before the hurt partner is ready to even consider forgiveness.  If you choose to stay and rebuild after an affair that doesn’t mean you forgive.  Forgiveness implies that you must now trust your partner’s promises of never straying again.  Asking for forgiveness places the responsibility on the hurt partner.  Forgiveness is a natural process that comes with an understanding and new awareness of your partner.  Then there is the guilt of not being able or want to forgive.  Or feeling guilty that you decided to stay in the relationship or guilty that you left the marriage.

Concentrate more so on ensuring you are ok, that your basic needs are taken care of, children are safe and you have a support system in place that includes family, friends and a Therapist who can help process the range of emotions you are feeling.  Be careful not to take too much advice from friends and family as they are biased in wanting the best for your well-being.

 

The decision is yours whether you stay in your relationship or leave it.  No one else’s.  Don’t allow anyone to judge or criticize your decision.  Develop and put in place a Moving Forward Plan for whatever you choose so that you know you have an objective tool to work from to evaluate your progress in getting what you want.  I help Individuals and Couples in Marriage Counseling develop Moving Forward Plans.  Each plan is different and unique to the people making them.  Give me a call at (858) 735-1139 and we can get started on your Moving Forward Plan.

Can Obsessing Over An Affair Be Helpful?

Can Obsessing Over An Affair Be Helpful? Recovering from an affair is a very difficult process. The mere disclosure of the affair may set the tone for these kinds of questions:

–  “Are we going to stay together or separate?”

–  “Are we a couple or aren’t we?”

–  “Will I ever be able to trust you again?”

–  “Does the lover know more than I do?”

–  “Did our friends or family members know about this before I did?”

–  “Are you going to continue seeing her/him?”

–  “Where did you two meet”

–  “Where did you have sex?”

– “How many times did you have sex?

–  “How long did it take before you became engaged in the affair?”

Can Obsessing Over An Affair Be Helpful?

A partner obsessing about the details of the Affair can be annoying yet hurtful if you are the Affair Partner (the person who had the affair), you continue to feel the pain you created for the Hurt Partner. Hearing about the Affair over and over again can become tiresome and the Affair Partner can become weary and discouraged that the relationship is unable to move on. While the Affair Partner is remorseful and is willing to do anything to repair the relationship, listening to the details about the Affair over and over again is counterproductive.

When two people date they get to know each other. Some fall in love intensely and decide to become a couple. Others are more thoughtful as they consider differences in culture, age, social class, religion, etc. Whether they decide to marry or live together in a homosexual or heterosexual partnership, the decision puts a boundary around the two of them as a Couple. This decision completes the initial bonding stage of a relationship and paves the way for a healthy growth-promoting process to be able to differentiate (that is, become different from one another). It is this security of their bond that provides the support for each other’s differentiation to become whom they will become as individuals within the relationship.

Can Obsessing Over An Affair Be Helpful?

In this culture, marriage/committed relationships come with an expectation of Sexual Monogamy, unless otherwise agreed upon. When one partner discovers that the other has had a sexual encounter with another person it is an assault on this security. An affair can be defined as one person secretly violating an actual or implied expectation of the other’s Primacy. The secrecy is more disturbing than the actual sex. The Affair Partner has disrupted the commitment with the Hurt Partner, therefore, this disruption violates this boundary around them as a Couple.

Because the commitment and boundary have been disrupted and violated, everything is open again and the inevitable questions get asked. All the questions that existed before becoming a couple are back on the table again. This time it’s more challenging because there are more dependencies (other people), like children involved. Each partner must re-decide whether he or she wants to start over and reinvest in their previous relationship. This decision can come with soul searching dialogue and self-confrontation of issues with the help of a trained counselor specializing in working with Infidelity.  It is important to seek the help of a trained Counselor to effectively direct the process as continual questioning can become hostile and persecutory and stagnate therapy, which may turn it into “beat up” sessions.  Confusion surrounds how to handle the persistent search for more facts and answering of questions.

Can Obsessing Over An Affair Be Helpful?

Is it valuable for someone to obsess over details of the Affair? It’s a way of working through the trauma of the affair. It is through this process that each partner decides whether to recommit to the partnership. When the Affair Partner answers the questions truthfully without being defensive or belligerent, it helps the Hurt Partner put an end to the “crazy” feeling since he or she is left fantasizing or sensationalizing answers to the questions themselves. When the evasiveness continues, it signals that the feelings leading to the Affair still exist and the Primacy of the committed partnership does not. Being honest about the details of the Affair helps put the blown up fantasies about the “other” woman or man into perspective and they are seen as being human, and not perfect or better.

As the Primary Couple deals with the betrayal of secrecy and deception created by the Affair they may create shared meaning by talking about these questions in detail. This process is essential to rebuilding trust and commitment.  Developing a New Monogamy Agreement also helps with generating a new relationship preventing similar situations from occurring again.  (See my article on The New Monogamy and look for How To Develop New Monogamy Agreements).

 

No Time For Weekly Therapy, Try A Couples Intensive

No Time For Weekly Therapy, Try A Couples Intensive. An Intensive is an in-depth intervention to create dramatic and long lasting shifts in your relationship where you acquire valuable tools needed to help make you move forward creating the life you want with your partner. In this one session counseling venue couples will learn to make implicit assumptions and agreements explicit so that each partner knows exactly what is expected from one another. Couples intensives are designed for those who can’t attend weekly sessions, have childcare challenges, and busy schedules receiving results sooner rather than later.

No Time For Weekly Therapy, Try A Couples Intensive

A Couples Intensive can focus on special issues and problem areas such as:

  • Communication and Conflict Repair
  • Intimacy and Connection
  • Emotional Closeness and Passion
  • Affair Recovery
  • Infidelity Disclosure

  • Sexual Desire Issues
  • Pornography and Internet Abuse
  • Sexual Addiction or Compulsion
  • Open Marriage or Polyamory Issues
  • Separation and Divorce Coaching
  • New Monogamy Visions

Everyone has their own concept of what “monogamy” means—and most people assume their partners and spouses are on the same page. Couples may assume that they are monogamous, but never discuss exactly what the monogamy agreement means to them. What happens when this implicit agreement is broken? After infidelity, relationships can become strained as both partners lose trust and faith in each other.  Having a dialogue about what monogamy means to you and what you want it to look like moving forward offers a way out of these difficulties for couples struggling to stay together, especially after infidelity. Counseling helps regain the trust, romance, and intimacy after infidelity by redefining their marital contract. 

A Couples Intensive can help you and your partner increase the passion in your relationship and maintain the Erotic Connection you truly deserve and desire. By learning to communicate with your partner you become motivated to stay connected. A vital and healthy interest in sex and a passionate curiosity in life is the way to keep a relationship alive for a long, long time.

Whether you are looking for marriage counseling, want to work on relationship issues, or want an Intensive to resolve conflict or improve your Sex life please contact me at (858) 735-1139.

The New School Year and Your Relationship

The New School Year and Your Relationship. School has started. Summer vacation is over and you’re back to your normal routine. That fabulous family vacation was wonderful except you felt no connection with your husband/wife. The kids had fun but what about you? Just thinking about that same old routine is making you feel really desperate and lonely. Do you think your spouse is thinking the same way? Do you and your spouse go through the motions but don’t really feel that spark any longer?

The New School Year and Your Relationship

As a Marriage Counselor, I work with couples who after so many years of being together have lost their individual selves in their relationship. They have concentrated on meeting everybody’s needs but their own. Does this sound like you? Did you know that in every relationship their exists a “ME?”  The “WE” in a relationship can never be quite satisfied until that “ME” has fulfilled certain stages throughout their  life span. My book entitled Happy Me Happy We: Six Steps To Know Yourself So You Know What You Want In A Relationships details just that.

I work within a Developmental Model and I help couples understand that the first step to finding a healthy relationship is to first develop a healthy Sense of Self. In other words, there is a starting point to being with your soul mate. You need to find YOURSELF first and determine what you are all about. I can help you go through the process in finding out just who you are and what kind of “ME”  you are bringing into your relationship.

If too much time goes by where your run of the mill routine is taking over your ability to be romantic you most likely will turn into roommates not feeling the emotional connection desired. The worst part is you role model for your children a lack of connectedness as the household is more transactional than relational.

Call me at (858) 735-1139 for more information about learning something new.