Spring has finally arrived! How wonderful to see everything begin to bloom again. The season is usually a time of growth and development. Relationships also should be growing and evolving and need to be nurtured on a consistent basis. But, have you ever felt that you and your partner have stopped growing together? You realize that you relationship needs extra attention?
This week a subscriber, Linda, asked me for advice on how to get over an affair. After 7 years of marriage, she is devastated after discovering that her husband recently had an affair. “I recognize that we have grown distant over the past 3 years and we have not had sex for two years,” she said. “I really want to save my marriage as I love my husband.” Her husband told her that the affair was only physical and he was not emotionally involved with the woman. He also wants to work on their marriage.
Over the years in my private practice I have helped numerous couples deal with this challenging situation. Some couples decided to break up, while those who decide to stay together have worked through the trauma in their relationship.
I explained to Linda that what I have experienced to be the most powerful motivator of getting through an affair is being committed to each other and working on healing together. It was only when couples acknowledged that the affair was a symptom of problems in their relationship, did they begin to deal with their issues both as a couple and/or as individuals.
The couple makes the commitment to reinvent and rebuild their relationship. It is imperative that the couple begins the communication process as they work on reestablishing trust, and rekindling the romance they once had together. This is an opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the old relationship, and creating a new beginning. It’s important that they rediscover what attracted them most to one another as they revive the romantic stage of the relationship. They need to make each other feel desirable again.
Commitment, patience, rebuilding trust, working and changing dynamics and issues, cherishing each other, and physically intimacy are the major ingredients needed to help overcome an affair. This heals the couple, enabling them to better move past the hurt and pain of the affair and work on a more solid and evolved partnership.
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