The affair must end for work to begin on your relationship. The ending of the affair is essential because of the sexual, emotional and verbal intimacy you share in the affair. If the affair does not end you cannot start to establish safety in your relationship and rebuild trust.
After an affair is discovered or revealed, the world as you know it feels shattered. It is important to work with a professional therapist who can help you rebuild your life. You have the options of rebuilding the marriage; dealing with the ambivalence of being married or separating in a constructive way.
Remember that when an affair is first disclosed you are on an emotional rollercoaster. One day you might want to walk away and the next day you might want to work on the relationship. Give yourself some time to work through the emotions. Share only with those who are safe, not those who might hold onto this if you try to work out the relationship. Seek a counselor who specializes in infidelity. Talk to an attorney and learn the facts in case you decide to pursue a separation or divorce. If the sex was unprotected make sure that both of you are tested for sexually transmitted diseases.
Couples will need to first deal with the revelation period. Then they will need to start healing the damage that has occurred and creating the relationship they want to have. The story of the affair should come out. The betrayed partner needs the opportunity to find out details and information. Otherwise the unknown can continue to haunt their thoughts. Later work includes addressing some of the problems that existed in the relationship prior to the affair.
Many marriages struck by infidelity end in divorce. For others, the crisis can be a turning point and the opportunity to address your problems. Many couples create a better relationship than they had ever experienced. Or you might decide this is the opportunity to build a new and separate life. You can go on after an affair and love again.
If an affair has affected your relationship, it’s not too late to seek help. Don’t be afraid to reach out to us, we’re here for you.