September 20th, 2013
Sometimes an affair can move a relationship into a deeper and more loving place.
A small church in Greece on the wedding day
You may ask yourself, what good could possibly come from an affair. The betrayal and hurt are overwhelming and you may wonder - how will I ever be able to trust him/her again?
I witnessed a couple who had been having trouble in their relationship for some time. I will call them Susan and David. David did not feel sexually attracted to Susan and was very critical of her actions and behaviours. She felt frustrated and concerned about the future of their relationship because of his constant criticisms and judgments. She could not understand the problem.
There was a secret in this relationship.
David was having an affair. Susan did not know about the affair.
I worked with both parties and then over many months they decided to separate. He moved out and then they explained the changes to their adolescent children who were devastated and upset about the breakdown of their parent's marriage.
Eventually, David told Susan that he was not coming home and that the separation was permanent. They should proceed towards splitting up their assets and selling the family home. They did this calmly and with remarkable kindness and consideration of the other person. There was very little fighting, although Susan was very sad about her loss and couldn't understand why he was making such a choice.
Since the separation Susan had come into her own. She started to run, joined a yoga class and also took some cooking classes. She lost a little weight, bought some new clothes and although she hoped that she and David would get back together, all these changes made her feel much better about herself.
David made secret plans to move in with his girlfriend. He spent lots of time with her but still during sessions he agonized over he should be with his wife or his love interest. He did not want to tell his wife about the other woman but the stress of trying to make the "right" decision was clearly eating him alive.
After having moved out, after they had been to the banker to separate the bank accounts and the house was getting ready to be put on the market, David came back to me on his own. He sat down in the chair in my office, looking agitated and rather pale and thin and then he croaked out; " I have changed my mind." I looked at him and asked him to repeat what he had said. He did. "I want to go home to Susan."
We discussed it and he agreed that he had to tell his wife the truth about the affair. Susan was very hurt and angry and felt devastated at the level of betrayal, but she loved David and wanted to be with him. Once he made this choice, he calmed down, he could breathe and felt much more relaxed.
It has been said by my Clearmind teachers that we don't hold a secret, the secret holds you. So very true.
This couple is still working on their new relationship and every day brings new challenges but I can say honestly that the future looks bright for both.