Posted on: Thursday, July 5th, 2012
In Couseling Couples in Calgary for over five Stampede seasons I am confronted with the reality of infidelity, affairs and unfaithfulness in marriage relationships. When one partner has cheated the pain and anguish of broken trust can be so much. Couples may opt for automatic (biological) responding with the standard fight, flight or freeze or may choose to get some help to sort out their many feelings and see what to do about the relationship.
Fight. Unleashing hell and bringing on WWIII. Again this approach may come naturally for most couples. The betrayee is hurt beyond belief and in shock and between moments of numbness and clarity can only view her partner as a monster. The offending partner is also hurt, maybe the many years of dissatisfaction in the relationship have left them feeling unappreciated, unloved and alone. The vehemence of their partner’s reactions to their infidelities only adds to this stockpile of pain.
Flight. Someone packs up and leaves, end of discussion, end of the relationship.
Freeze. Doing nothing. Well, there may be the one or two cases in a million where this approach does make a difference, but more often than not this may reflect an underlying problem in the relationship: avoidance. If the affair was an attempt at solving something in the relationship – dissatisfaction (true in over 70% of cases) then doing nothing is the wrong answer.
Getting the right help is the key to moving on after the affair whether together or apart. Give us a call at 403-619-8558