Working Through an Affair

Get Beyond the Shock and Pain of Their Affair and Heal

The initial shock of discovering an affair and the uncertainty it creates, often leads to the following reactions: depression, anger, shame, obsessive thoughts, dwelling on the details, self-blame, the inability to concentrate and monitoring a partner’s every move. It can be tiring and overwhelming. But, there is a healthy way to deal with these feelings.

You need to be able to discuss your feeling in a supportive and non-judgmental environment. You need someone to listen to you at this time, rather than succumbing to your first knee-jerk reactions to an affair.

You Don’t Need Advice in the Beginning

Advice is typically not useful at this point in time, as people are too emotionally distraught to think clearly or make decisions that are in their best interest. Having someone who will listen, however, is important. Feelings become less intense and less intrusive when they are shared with people who care. Most times we do reach out to our advisors to seek a better path or to get better perspective on the person who has had the affair. They can give us insight that no friend can. It is that non-judgmental approach we need. Someone who is unbiased.

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Your Partner Could be Defensive

It may not be useful to express one’s disappointment with a partner at this point. Immediately after the discovery of an affair, cheating partners are probably unable to listen and provide support. And sharing such intense, emotionally charged feelings with a partner may create a defensive reaction—a denial of what happened, an attempt to shift the blame or withdrawal from the situation and even your relationship. Unfortunately, such responses are only likely to intensify negative feelings.

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You Need to Talk to Someone Who Will Listen

As a general rule, sharing feelings with someone who is not willing (or able) to listen often has the opposite effect—unacknowledged feelings become more powerful and oppressive. After the initial shock has subsided, it helps to make an assessment of how both partners want to resolve the problem. Is there a genuine concern, expressed by both parties, to try and save the relationship? Again, individual counseling or speaking to an advisor is often useful for people who are ambivalent about their feelings or are uncertain about the future of their relationship after an affair.

You Need to Work Together

People often lack insight into their own behavior, and if they do understand why they had an affair, they often do not want to disclose this information to a partner. They think that doing so will only cause more problems. However, if the real issues are not identified, they are less likely to get resolved. And by approaching this problem as a couple, it can empower the partner who has been cheated on, by providing a sense of control. Working together to fix the problem can bring back a sense of certainty or reassurance, which is important when trying to restore trust.

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Discuss the Details. Don’t Conceal Them.

In addition to identifying the motivation underlying the affair, it is essential to candidly discuss the details of what happened. Again, most cheating partners attempt to hide the details of the affair, thinking that telling the truth will only lead to more problems.

Concealing the details of the affair often leads to lingering questions, which if not addressed, are unlikely to go away on their own. And if questions linger, it can be nearly impossible for a partner not to dwell on the incident. Revealing the truth can be painful, but it is necessary when trying to move forward. The truth is what sets you free. It is hard to hear, but soothes the soul once it is taken in. You can heal from an affair. It takes dedication and loving yourself to overcome it all. Do not give up on you! Have the strength to overcome. Remember, the affair happened, but it wasn’t you fault. It happened because of your partner’s weaknesses. Don’t beat yourself up over it.

Love and Light.

Asia

5 thoughts on “Working Through an Affair

  1. Margaret Busch

    I totally agree with you Lorin. My partner cheated on me countless times, always had excuses. I will never go back with him. The heartbreak hurts to much.

    Reply
  2. Tetyana

    My opinion on cheating, once it has happened – the TRUST will never be regained. It is sad and very unfortunate. You can forgive but can never forget.
    Also, people cheat for different reasons.
    My male’s friend wife cheated on him because of him working long hours and not spending any time with her. She felt unheard, unappreciated, lonely and unloved. Couples need intimacy and communication. When the following are missing, the partnership is bound to come to an end. The definition of RELATIONSHIP is to constantly RELATE to one another. It’s a process, not a destination point.

    Reply
  3. libby 5288

    Hi Asia: thank you for this Wonderful article, very well explained, true to the fact, n very helpful to many who need to learn from an affair, very well said, you are a Gem:)))

    Reply
  4. kat

    Asia, I think your advice is spot on. The party that was cheated on needs to feel as strong and secure as possiple. However, I strongly disagree with your statement that “the affair wasn’t your fault…”. Sometimes it is because of the cheated person’s faults that the affair happens at all. At that point everyone involved needs to take responsibility for their actions unless, of course, it’s a simple case of someone just not being able to keep their pants on!

    Reply
  5. Lorin Card

    You are assuming too much. Not everyone who has been cheated on has to or even wants to get back together with the cheating partner. There is no such thing as an affair that was a mistake on the cheating partner’s part. No way did my partner “accidentally” cheat on me as many times as she did and have two of her kids who are not biologically mine “by accident”. Cheaters cheat because they think, in a very twisted way, that they will get away with it. And the more they cheat and are not found out, the more brazen and frequent the cheating partner cheats. It becomes like a drug for them. And it becomes a game for them. And they begin to despise their spouse who tries to ignore or overlook or even help them quit. The problem is the cheating partner does not want to quit. Something is very wrong in their minds when they justify their actions as if they are right. But they are very wrong and cheating is wrong and I am very sorry but in my humble opinion, the cuckolded partner DOES NOT EVER have to forgive the cheating partner. Their relationship has been severely compromised and forever screwed up. So, sorry, you’re very wrong in thinking that in most cases, the cuckolded partner has to forgive and take back the cheating partner. And you have assumed all that and that is just not so and just not the case. Has your partner ever cheated on you? Mine did many times for a very long time. And I am not turning back and not taking the cheating one back, EVER.

    Reply

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