Infidelity leads to the downfall of marriages. It causes a dent in the commitment that spouses promise each other. Infidelity is breaking the promise to remain faithful to your spouse. To understand more about infidelity, read our article on "Infidelity: What it does to your Marriage." https://1to1help.net/articles/Infidelity:-What-it-does-to-your-Marriage/MTM0
Understanding the causes of infidelity
Research (Atkins, Baucom & Jacobson, 2001) indicates that there are multiple factors leading to infidelity. Two prominent factors are relationship satisfaction and opportunity for attention, which is responsible for people engaging in extra-marital affairs. When people do not find the satisfaction and attention they are seeking in the relationship, they begin to seek those things elsewhere. Marital satisfaction, love, and attention are built on how the spouses communicate with each other, resolve their conflict, and spend quality time together. Unfortunately, what cannot be found in one relationship is sought after in a different relationship. Research (Buss & Shackelford, 1997) also indicates that personality traits such as narcissism also indicate the possibility of extra-marital affair. Individuals who have the tendency to seek attention by flirting around would be more susceptible to cheat on their partners.
The best way to cope with infidelity is to address the concern before it becomes huge. When spouses tend to notice the distance or rift between them, they need to address it immediately and work on strengthening the foundation of their marriage. Once infidelity makes its way into the marriage, it is very difficult to repair the damage. When infidelity creeps in, a lot of questions rise in the mind of the spouses. Should you stay? Can the trust be rebuilt? Can everything be forgiven and we could move on? To understand how couples should cope with infidelity, here are some of the things they need to look into:
Finding out about the affair
Discovering that your spouse has cheated on you can be a devastating experience. One is emotionally distraught when they learn that their partner has been unfaithful to them. Emotional infidelity causes the same amount of damage as sexual infidelity. A lot of questions erupt through the minds of both the partners, which could lead to further conflict and disagreement. However, it is crucial to understand that an extramarital affair is not the solution for a marriage that is falling apart.
Learning and finding out about the affair could take a heavy toll. Once you realize that your partner has cheated on you, you might experience guilt, betrayal, grief, anger, and confusion. It is crucial to understand that one needs time and support to cope with these emotions. Individuals are encouraged to reach out to family or a counselor for further support.
Choosing a path
Often married couples struggling to overcome the aftermath of infidelity search for a quick fix. If you recently discovered that your spouse has cheated on you, the pain and confusion would have overwhelmed you. This is further aggravated by the questions you might have related to the affair. All of this leads to a search for quick remedy where both the partners wish that things were back to the way they were.
Instead one is encouraged to not take any quick decisions pertaining to the marriage. Spouses should not rush to simply end their marriage.
Couples would need to take the time and understand what would have led to the extramarital affair. Spouses would need to sit together and process their individual emotions. Both would need to work under the guidance of a counselor or a mental health professional to understand their expectations from each other and work on their feelings and thoughts. Through professional help, couples would be directed to understand what holds them together and what draws them apart. Since there are so many heavy emotions associated with extra-marital affair and infidelity, one would need help from a professional or trusted family member to overcome those feelings.
Self-care and support
Infidelity is a gut-wrenching experience and can leave a lot of scars. It can cause a substantial amount of damage and leave you feeling low on confidence and self-esteem. Feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness can cause further damage. Hence it is important for spouses to look after their well being and reach out to family and friends for support. Self care and support would ensure that you are better able to cope with the aftermath of infidelity.
To understand more about coping with infidelity, please reach out to a counselor at 1800-425-9595 or 080-48130142.