Turning Points in Healing from Infidelity
More case studies of those who turned the corner in a healthy way in facing the infidelity and extramarital affair. Change and healing does take place, and often facing the infidelity constructively generates a deeper and richer relationship.
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Where are you in healing from the infidelity in your life and marriage?
Have you turned the corner? Have shifts and changes taken place which indicate that healing is progressing? Or, are you stuck… seemingly at a stagnant place in the healing process?
Or, is infidelity new? And, you don’t have a clue of what the signs or healing might be or of any turning point that might indicate you are on the right path?
Below are three case studies of those who have faced infidelity and have experienced a turning point of one kind or another.
These case studies look at the reality of healing from infidelity. They reflect an outcome of not, in essence, rebuilding or saving the marriage.
In these three cases the characterological deficiencies of the cheating spouse was so pronounced and ingrained that s/he was unable or unwilling to pursue health.
Even without saving a marriage, there are significant turning points.
Infidelity Turning Points
Facing infidelity sets you on a journey with many turning points. The road is difficult, the most intense human experience, I believe, but can lead to a new life, a new relationship with new perspectives on who one is and what one desires the most.
Here’s a question I presented to a reader and the response:
1. What was the turning point(s) in your recovery? What part, if any, did my material (e-book, articles, site) play?
Case study #1:
When I realized that there was nothing I could do to get him back. I tried most of your suggestions but apparently he was to far gone. The words “if you love something that much sometimes you have to let it go” and I did and from that day forward I was able to move on in my life. I did however come to realize that I’m a very nice person who is often taken advantage of and in that vein I tried to help someone who took advantage of me and was abusive towards me in the end. Without hesitation when I got to the end of my rope I cut him free, quickly and cut my losses. In do so and spending a few months alone and even toying with the idea of getting back together with my ex I realized that ex was never going to change and I didn’t want a lifetime of lies and cheating. When my head cleared I was blessed with meeting the most wonderful man on earth. We have been together a short period of time but the lessons I’ve learned from you will certainly help me with communication, openness, forgiveness and trust. Thank you for those invaluable insights. My future looks bright.
Do you have thoughts, comments? Anything you would like to say? This case study is on my blog. Please go to: http://www.infidelity-help.com/blog/2009/10/05/infidelity-turning-points-2/ and leave a comment at the bottom.
Infidelity: Letting Go of the Abuse
What is your turning point if you face the “I Don’t Want to Say No” or “I Can’t Say No” types of affairs characterized by emotional abuse?
Often the offended spouse believes the marriage, or more accurately, her/his cheating husband or cheating wife can be saved or s/he will reform his/her behavior.
That may happen. However, if the patterns related to these two types of affairs are pervasive and deeply ingrained, the chances of constructive change are minimal.
The turning point for many is “letting go” of attempts to reform or save the other.
The reader below expresses her story of moving gradually away from the abusive relationship as she struggles to forgive and forge ahead:
Hi Dr Huizenga. Thank you for keeping me on your mailing list all this time. It has been 3 and a half years since I went through the experience and I valued your material very much at the time.
My experience was a tough one as my partner was having many affairs. The toughest part was finding out that one of his affairs was with a women who had be-friended me after their affair had began. To realize that he did not question her reasons for getting close to me and the lack of respect he must have had for me to allow her to do so was extremely saddening.
He had also put me a risk of STD’s due to many of his sexual partners being bar girls in south east Asia. Your material helped me at a time of much weakness – not only caused by what I had discovered but my treatment for 10 years.
I had no self esteem and little thought or respect for myself as the years of ‘indifference’ had progressed. Remaining ‘neutral’ was great advice, although difficult in such a time of mixed emotion.
The ‘affair categories’ helped me make the decision to leave. This was a man who would never change his cheating behavior. It may sound crazy to many. Why would you need to refer to material to make such a decision after such terrible treatment? Sometimes you are so involved and weakened by the past and the harsh reality of the present to have the strength to trust your own judgments.
You believe what you want to believe. There are many couples who I am sure have been able to repair the damage and remain together; learning a great deal from the experience and about each other. By learning more about the reasons people have affairs, it gave me a great insight into whether there was a way to remedy the relationship or cut my loses, learning from the experience and moving on.
To cut my ‘loses’ was the biggest ‘gain’ and gift I have ever given myself. The rest of my journey was a personal one. Once you have taken that step away and look back, things are even more difficult. I had to learn to forgive myself for allowing a man to have treated me so ‘indifferently’ for many years.
However, I do still share your belief that ‘nobody makes a person have an affair’. My partner would have still cheated regardless and is doing the very same to the women he has since married and fathered a child with – (the women who had befriended and manipulated me) and the women who many know will and has been planning to make a great deal of money from him marrying her.
The category that applied to him has proved that he will continue the same behavior, the very behavior that will cost him greatly in his current relationship.
I am still learning to forgive myself, but like you say, you never forget (if only I could). Thank you again for your help. At the time, I was living abroad with this man and most people I knew had a business connection to him. I had no family there to talk to and felt very much alone in my sorrow and anger.
Connecting to your site and reading your material encouraged me to think rationally at a time when emotions were so very strong and confused. This has been education not only for the period of decision making and grief but for the future also.
Do you have thoughts, comments? Anything you would like to say? This case study is on my blog. Please go to: http://www.break-free-from-the-affair.com/blog/2009/10/05/infidelity-letting-go-of-the-abuse/ and leave a comment at the bottom.
Coping with Infidelity – Choices
We face choices when coping with infidelity. Sometimes, that’s all it is: coping with infidelity. It is difficult to see the joy or the expansion of life and relationships.
We choose to find bright moments, moments that give comfort and a little solace. Maybe this is a prelude to a next step? One would hope so.
Here’s a story of someone coping with infidelity and attempting to find any small silver lining:
I’m still trying to recover. Your book has helped me to have some self-healing. I read, and re-read it. I tried to share it with him to no avail. He just couldn’t care less—talk about Passive/Aggressive.
My marriage is not restored. He says he just doesn’t want the strain/stress of working on a marriage, etc. He still lies about all his adultery, etc. I’ve faced the fact that I will not hear the truth. He “left the marriage” years ago. He just didn’t leave home.
I am in bad health and just don’t have the strength to fight for a divorce, and a fight it would be the lawyer told said. We live pretty divide lives while still living together. He’s “happy” just to have a “companion”–his word. Sad life. But, I have family and friends who love me, and grandchildren that give me happiness.
His main interest is his money, and eating out. He doesn’t like people much, so he doesn’t care that he has no friends. You just can’t fight that type of mind, and I can’t build a marriage by myself. I’ve gotten over the anger period. I just mainly feel sorrow for the pathetic person that he is. No joy or gratitude for all his blessings.
I have learned to find joy in the smallest things for which I am grateful. I still appreciate reading your letters. Please keep me on your mailing list.
Do you have thoughts, comments? Anything you would like to say? This case study is on my blog. Please go to:
http://www.break-free-from-the-affair.com/blog/2009/10/05/coping-with-infidelity-choices/ and leave a comment at the bottom.