Can Your Marriage Survive?
Emotional affairs can wreck marriages. If you discover your husband has cheated with another woman, you might feel hurt, anger, sadness and confusion. The pain of betrayal can be devastating. Do you feel like an outsider in your own marriage? Strangely, emotional affairs begin innocently. For example, your spouse has lunch with a co-worker or accidentally connects with a high school sweetheart. They text frequently and talk on the phone at odd hours. Over time, they share intimate secrets with each other. Thoughts and feelings comprise the emotional affair. Physical affairs involve sex.
So, Can Your Marriage Survive Your Husband’s Emotional Affair?
This is a question you can’t definitively answer until you decide whether you want to save your marriage. While pain churns in the pit of your stomach, you can’t objectively answer either question. Before you pack your bags or call a therapist, take all the time you need before addressing the emotional affair with him.
Like trying to un-ring a bell, things done in haste can’t be undone.
Your innate reaction may be to contact the “other woman” and warn her to stay away from your man. Don’t. You won’t feel better afterward. The challenge is between you and your husband. She is the outsider.
When Trust has Gone
When your guy is keeping secrets and telling lies, he is betraying your trust. A loss of trust means it’s hard to believe anything he says. Communication, an essential element of marriage, follows a lack of trust. The realization that he has formed a deep emotional connection with another woman can shatter the marital foundation. Without trust, communication and a strong emotional bond, your marriage is in trouble. When trust goes, love follows. It is possible for the marriage to be saved, but your spouse must be proactive in rebuilding trust.
Nevertheless, you must eventually confront your spouse to determine if he wants to work on the marriage. If so, ending the emotional affair may be non-negotiable.
Rebuilding Marriage After an Emotional Affair
Once your spouse has ended all contact with the other woman and apologized sincerely to you, it’s time for several heart-to-heart talks. It’s possible that the emotional affair was not the cause, but the result of unresolved marital issues.
Did your husband need something you weren’t giving him? Did he feel you didn’t listen when he talked? Did you crave more attention than you provided?
Ask him to explain in detail why he had an affair. Whatever the reasons were, it is his responsibility to rebuild trust. He might start with little things, such as checking in when he leaves the office late and always being where he says he is.
It could take years for you to regain trust after the emotional affair. Once you are assured he genuinely regrets his infidelity and is working to change his behavior, try to reciprocate by starting to trust him again. Marriage counseling is always an option. If your husband goes with you and heeds the counselor, it’s an auspicious sign that he is willing to work to save the marriage.
Chances are, you and your guy will feel connected again if you are both sincere about saving your marriage. Otherwise, you will grow further apart and likely divorce. Emotional affairs change relationships for better or worse.