• From Discovery to Affair Recovery

    From Discovery to Affair Recovery

    Couples who fight too much often sign up for coaching in the aftermath of an affair.

    Betrayal usually damages but doesn’t destroy the love of either partner.

    Yet discovering an affair brings endless tidal waves of grief and rage. No relationship comes equipped with the tools to navigate this.  Couples come to me facing hard dilemmas:

    When you  love someone but cannot trust them, is it possible to mend the relationship?                                                                                                                              

    When you’ve shattered the one you love, how do you pick up the pieces?               

    After wronging them, do you even have the right to help them to heal?

    The research shows that relationships can recover after an affair.  However, the couple needs to take  key steps to stay on track in their journey to recovery.

    1. Accountability                                                                      

    Cheaters often urge their partners to forgive and forget, and move on.

    Most cheating partners feel guilty. Guilt makes people feel helpless. No one wants to experience these unpleasant, difficult emotions.  Of course running away from guilt invites conflict instead of peace.

    The cheater needs to address the pain they’ve caused rather than ignore it. Paradoxically, cheaters need to lean in to their partners’ rage in order to prevent years of useless fighting. Coaching can teach cheaters how to safely do this.

    Coaching also offers non destructive ways for the betrayed partner to fully express themselves.

    2. No Cheap Forgiveness                                                    

     No one can get closer if they can’t share their feelings and learn to work it out.

    Sometimes the betrayed partner prematurely forgives the cheater.  They rob themselves of the vital healing experience of feeling their rage and sorrow. Dr. Spring calls this “cheap forgiveness” and warns that it can lead to future infidelities. Cheap forgiveness sends a message that cheating is okay. It also allows both partners to avoid their strong emotions. In order to heal, couples need to be able to share and manage their strong emotions.

    Coaching teaches couples how to know when to express and when to let go of strong feelings and how to safely channel raw emotion into building communication and trust.

    3. Let Go                                          

    A couple can’t rebuild trust if the wronged partner weaponizes their resentment.

    Even though it may take many years, once the grief, mistrust, and rage wind down, both partners can begin to let it go.

    Rebuilding trust after an affair takes time. Each couple is different. While some may feel closure after six months, many easily need about five years. Some couples want a coach to guide them. But the important thing is that both parties remain committed and do the work.