Monday, November 10, 2008

Can A Marriage Survive an Affair?

Posted by Michele Olson

I love television…the medium and all the funny, happy moments it can bring if you watch the right programs. One thing I don’t like is its inability to convey the depth of pain that comes from some real life situations. There is a danger in thinking that real life mirrors the ability to wrap things up in a tidy bow in 60 minutes. Television programs and the movies are filled with people casually having affairs, and making it look exciting, romantic and painless.

In real life affairs are devastating.
Someone along the way gets hurt. Something that was once one way is now changed in some shape or form.

But does that mean it’s RIP and recovery isn’t possible?

Not according to a resource like Beyond Affairs Network (BAN for short)

Ban’s mission statement should be a healing balm of hope for anyone reading this who is feeling the pain of an affair.

Beyond Affairs Network (BAN) Mission Statement

To provide an opportunity for people who are dealing with the devastating impact of a spouse’s affair to come together face-to-face, for strength, insight, and mutual support.

To provide a safe place to share the painful emotions that interfere with recovery and a place to gain perspective and understanding, aimed at thinking more clearly and acting more effectively, in order to proactively move forward, make more informed personal decisions and recover from this experience.

To reinforce people’s own efforts toward recovery, working in conjunction with and not in place of other support they are seeking such as therapy, counseling or marriage healing and strengthening seminars.

To help people reach a point where they are fully healed from the experience and no longer need support.

To become as commonly known about and available worldwide as other major support groups such as Al-Anon, so that no betrayed spouse needs to suffer in isolation.

BAN is one great resource and you can visit their site for more information.

Another resource is Dear Peggy and her Extramarital Affairs Resource Center.

For a great book on the subject read: Staying Together When An Affair Pulls You Apart by Stephan Judah, P.H.D.

The point is: there is help and hope for marriages that will help if your marriage is suffering from an affair. You are not alone. Many couples have survived affairs and gone on to have healthier marriages. In the end, your outcome is between you and your spouse, but rest assured that there can be help along the way.

Let us hear from you. (You are anonymous on this blog)
Has your marriage survived an affair?
Have you and your spouse ever talked about marital affairs?
Do you have an encouraging word to someone because you’ve “walked a mile in their shoes?”


Anonymous said...

I still cry every day. My husbnad had an affair with a ex-stripper. I am an attorney in a small town. I am humiliated and devastated. I had no idea. I still love him, but he's still with her. I think he still loves me but is embarrassed to come back. We did divorce, but he has kept my health insurance up and continues to pay other small bills for me that he doesn't have to, which makes me think he does still love me? Am I being a fool waiting for him to come to his senses? I have tried to date, but I just can't I still really love my now ex-husband. said...

I'm so sorry for the pain I hear in your words. The key to a marriage surviving an affair is for both parties to work together. Number one, your ex-husband can't be with the other woman and work on restoring your marriage. That will never work. You probably shouldn't mistake paying some bills for love. The situation is quite black and white. Ask him if he is willing to end it with her and both of you work on seeing if you can restore your marriage. If he is not willing to do that, you have your answer. If he is not willing to devote himself to restoring your marriage, then it's time for you to be talking to a counselor or coach about what you need to do to move on and move forward so you don't stay in this "one foot in, one foot out" life of thinking you have something if you don't. Directly ask him to work on your marriage, with only the two of you in the relationship. That should give you a clear answer of how to move forward. I hope you will take action so you can move forward.
Please blog anytime.