Those that have experienced the trauma of an affair find it to be one of the most traumatic events of their lives. Both partners lives are instantly upended, as well as those immediately close to them, such as children. The betrayed/injured/rejected partner is left with their world no longer making sense to them, displaced by grief, anger, resentment, and sadness (2). The partners often engage in bitter disputes, sometimes physically so, as they deal with the immediate ramifications of the disclosure. But, what about the one that disclosed the affair? They suffer as well, with feelings of guilt, indignation, detachment, righteousness, sadness, fear, etc.
I am only concerned with what is proven to work, which is going to encompass what clinicians employ as they encounter infidelity in their practices Whether one disagrees with a specific approach, the reason behind it or has their own pet approach, we have to align ourselves with the published research, not because being a scientist makes them correct, but because the scientific method discovers what works and what doesn't. Bad research is addressed within the community of researchers, meaning that research evolves to correct upon the downfalls from previously published research and to introduce new hypotheses, which may end up as working theories. Good science implies asking a question, testing it and determining what the truth is.
A common theme throughout this thread will be tackling the following (1):
Sexual fidelity is a normative assumption for most romantic relationships despite data suggesting that substantial numbers of persons in assumed monogamous relationships cheat.
I will introduce the reasoning behind the necessity for individuals to align themselves with objective reality, rather than with ideals (normative assumptions). In life, we have laws for how the world works. We can fight with all of our might, but we still cannot eliminate subdue the laws of physics, for example. We have only the option of working with immutable laws, meaning that we can receive the benefits, or reality can impose punishments. The target of this thread is the question, what are you going to do about it. Victimhood will be exposed for the punishments it imposes on individuals and what they may do about it; this is a very key element to the UAP. Much of the information will stem from CBT (various waves).
Throughout this thread, one will see the following:
A.)Why individuals cheat- I tripped/A Cry for Help
C.)Types of affairs
D.)Affair differences men/women (including perceptions)
E.)How to address an undisclosed affair (pre)
F.)How to address a disclosed affair (post)
G.)What NOT to do
H.)Understanding the betrayed
I.)Understanding the unfaithful
K.)Understanding THE affair
L.)Rebuilding the relationship
O.)Choosing to end it
P.)Keeping it affair-proof
Q.)Preventing an affair
more may follow
To compete with commonly held myths regarding infidelity, and to generally educate. The only thing that matters is that individuals find efficacious solutions to their problems, yielding the healthiest outcomes. One must always consider the ramifications for their thoughts, behaviors, and actions, including positive and negative externalities. Infidelity is a delicate subject, meaning that lives are on the line in a number of ways. This topic is one in which individuals have hardened stances on, making it a perfect candidate to receive attention.
I will only be using scholarly sources for this thread.
I have other professional demands on my time, leaving this specific undertaking to a few hours per week.
I am a coach that lives for research and helping individuals. I am certified to coach. Coaching is a process that requires extensive work on my part to make it efficacious. This means that I have spent (and will continue to) incredible amounts of time to research the various aspects that involve relationships. My greatest interests are in sexual dysfunctions and infidelity. I have this interest to help others, because of the incredible pain I suffered in the past. I greatly desire to help others not feel the pain I felt.
One might ask why the heck I bother on forums, then. I do need some challenges and disagreements in my life. The relationship between coach and client does not present as much skepticism as I feel is required, leaving me to continuously test my knowledge with you. I learn by having what I say challenged. Being challenged forces me to consider things from alternate points of view, creating the demand for better arguments on my behalf. The more I learn, the more I realize I don't know.
I am thirty years old, engaged, and have a great little boy. My Experience
I was cheated on a long time ago. I have felt the worst feelings and thought the worst things. I approach infidelity with the understanding of how it works and what it feels like, but with the understanding that we have no choice but to move on and eliminate the trauma that we feel. Through my incredible suffering, I learned an incredible amount about how emotions work. I spent absurd amounts of time to heal and understand the common pitfalls. I then realized that I could help others heal in the same manner that I did.
To be continued...........
1. Walters, A., & Burger, B. (2013). 'I Love You, and I Cheated': Investigating Disclosures of Infidelity to Primary Romantic Partners. Sexuality & Culture, 17(1), 20-49. doi:10.1007/s12119-012-9138-1
2. Peluso, P. R. (2007). Infidelity : A Practitioner’s Guide to Working with Couples in Crisis. New York: Routledge.