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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Does the pain of infedelity ever go away?

    Related Topic
    i have been with my bf for 4 and half years we have two kids 3 and 1, when my son was only 9weeks old my partner cheated on me at a work function, he called me drunk to pick him up and bring him home when he passed out on the couch i found a girls number after it fell out of his pocket i called the number until she finally answered she said it was just drunk flirting nothing more, he said the same i was very hurt,he apologised but two days later he walks out on us, he was gone for a month i wasnt that worried he had done it before he always came home and we stayed in contact as usual, he said he still loved me but needed some space and not to worry, we started talking bout him coming home and then i come across all the txt messages on his phone he had been sleeping with that girl for 3weeks i was crushed!he became very remorseful and stopped seeing her straight away and promised it meant nothing, i decided to forgive him and he has been good, but its been a yr and its still eating meup
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  • purple_rain

    HealthShare Member

    whenever i start enjoying myself or start feeling happy with him or when we have sex bam it all come to the surface and i feel like im finding out all over again the pain is just as intense our relationship has been a difficult one but we always had a strong passion for each other and a strong bond i never doubted his love for me, he has been depressed for along time and has tried to commit suicide before i have always been there for him through everything and never given up him like everyone else in his life and this is why it hurts so much i just never thought he would be capable of repaying all my kindess and loyalty and love with such a horrible painful thing, i feel like i cant look at him the same its like he is a stranger now, but i still cant give up on him i know i still love him but there is a wall between us that i cant seem to break through

  • Anonymous

    Hi there,
    You are not alone.  The pain is so great that I think you never fully recover.  It has been 18 months since it happened to me.  I cried endlessly for about a year after.  The flashbacks continue and you can never fully trust again however with time, I have realised I cannot change was has happened and the resentment in my heart is causing me ill health.  My husband is doing everything he can to restore my faith in him. We are currently seeing a therapist who is making the healing process a little easier but it is going to take a lot of hard work. I have lots of triggers and that is normal because I have been traumatised by his betrayal and lies.  Your marriage will never be the same again but you can get through it if you truly love your partner.  Everything is an “open book” with us now.
    I wish you luck in the future.

  • Grace Gonzalez

    Counsellor, Psychotherapist

    Counselling Training and QualificationsI am a counsellor and psychotherapist with over 15 years experience working with non-profit organisations and community health services in Melbourne.I have … View Profile

    Hi Purple Rain;
    Your first sentence indicates to me that even though you have stayed together after having discovered about the cheating, no much was done about resolving what lead you both to this situation.  The emotions you are feeling might be related to the avoidance related to resolving yours and his role in the relationship. Your description of his emotional state (suicide attempts and depression) is an example of something you might not be able to help him with alone. Therefore, trying to ‘help him, through everything and never giving up”, might be too ambitious for only one person to take on, in this case YOU. This  last statement by you about trying to help him might also be a sign of the role you feel you need to play in this relationship “the helper”  The question is if you see your role as being the helper, therefore what do you feel  his role in this relation is.  Defining roles in a relationship, identifying what each of us bring to the relationship can be a complex endeavour but definitely a worthwhile process to be involved in in order to move forward and break through that wall you speak of between you and him. It is understandable to feel that you cannot give up on him unless the confusion about your role and his role is clarified. It is also understandable to see him as a stranger as you have discovered something about him you did not know. Hope this gives you a bit of an insight about things if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask again
    Good Luck!

  • 1

    Thanks

    I have been working in Eltham, Melbourne as a relationship and family counsellor for over twelve years. I draw on current theory and research about … View Profile

    It sounds like the infidelity issue has not been resolved for you, therefore you are unable to let it go in order to move on. Couples need to do some particular work in order to recover from infidelity. First, the person who committed the infidelity needs to cease all contact with the other party and allow their partner to ask questions and seek clarity in order to move beyond the initial shock. Second, couples need to understand (without excusing the affair) what led to the infidelity, in order to make sense of it (this may include things like understanding the link between alchohol use and impulsive actions that may later be regretted, for example). Last, couples need to develop a clear agreement about what is and isn't OK in their relationship (e.g. "We agree that we will not drink to excess while in the company of an attractive person of the opposite sex"), and have a plan for ensuring they 'affair-proof' their relationship (e.g. being very clear about what will happen if agreements are not respected). All three steps are needed in order to restore trust, which is fundamental to a healthy relationship and being able to move on together. Often people need help in counselling to complete these steps.

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