A woman will often have a certain thought shortly after discovering that her husband has been unfaithful. Deep down inside, one of her deepest fears is, Is this somehow my fault? I feel it is important to address this because much of the advice she receives is not altogether helpful. Depending on whether she speaks to family, friends, or someone in her Christian community, she is usually met with one of these types of questions:
Do you feel as though you’ve been the wife you should have been?
Were you doing your job as his wife?
Were you meeting your husband’s needs? Could that be why he decided to go outside the marriage?
Maybe you need to dress sexier. Have you been doing that?
You look like you may have put on a few pounds. Could you try working out to try and lose some weight?
Is it possible for you to try to cook better meals for him?
Did you make sure the house was always tidy and the children were settled when he came home from work?
Have you loved him unconditionally?
Women will also hear this type of counsel from a variety of sources:
Maybe you need to have more faith and really pray about this. Pray about your marriage. Pray for your husband.
You are being really unforgiving. Stop talking about this. Don’t be so sad and mope around all the time. Just be glad he hasn’t left you.
Why don’t you focus on the marriage? Go out on a date night. Have some daily devotionals together. Work on your communication and find out each other’s love language. Maybe that will help turn things around.
The problem with this type of counsel is that it only further traumatizes the wife. She is not able to recover because she feels responsible for her husband. She feels as though she’s responsible for his recovery, and for somehow stopping the infidelity or his use of pornography. She feels like she has to become a detective and inspect what he’s doing or what he’s viewing. She may feel like she has to police him, get books for him to read or set up counseling appointments. All of this focuses on her husband, and she is unable to heal. As a result, she becomes very fearful and insecure.
When a husband is not held accountable for his sin, and when there has been no formal disclosure, or any type of timeline about what has occurred, he is very likely to repeat his behavior, continue in sin and not heal. Trust cannot be rebuilt this way. Forgiveness cannot even begin to take place because there hasn’t been any trust building, and reconciliation is so far away. This type of counseling is unbiblical, and here’s why.
In Matthew 18:15-17, it says, If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private. If he listens to you, you have won your brother. But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses, every fact may be confirmed. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. If he refuses to listen to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile or a tax collector.
If you fail to confront your sinning spouse, you are enabling his sin. You have no influence over him. When you have taken all the steps that are in Matthew 18, you can know that you have done all that you possibly can. The real reason this infidelity is not your fault is because he is the one in sin. I have yet to meet a spouse who has put a gun to the head of her husband and commanded him to commit infidelity or sexual impurity. He is fully at fault.
To settle your heart, please know that God says there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. If you are the spouse who has been the recipient of the sin, what you are feeling is false guilt. Please know that you do not need to fear. God will see you through it.
If you would like to reach me at email@example.com . Or if you would like to speak with me schedule a time for us to talk. The Biblical counsel and the steps needed to address this problem are available, and I would love to support you. Hangeth thou in there and I’m sending you God’s grace and peace.
There is one question I get asked all the time. Once a wife has discovered that her husband has been unfaithful, she says, “Carol, he has told me that he’s ended the affair, but how can I trust him?”
Quite honestly, the answer is that you can’t. You can’t believe words; you can only believe behaviors and actions. I have found that there are few husbands who will be completely honest about being unfaithful until they have been caught. If they knew what the consequences of their actions would be – their lies, their deception, their infidelity and their cheating – they would have avoided it at all costs.
Usually, husbands will minimize what they’ve done. They’ll say things like:
• “We were just friends.”
• “It was an emotional affair.”
• “It wasn’t sexual.”
• “We only had sex a few times.”
There aren’t many husbands who are honest about disclosing the details of an affair, and there are a few reasons for this.
1. He wants to protect himself. He may tell you that he’s trying to protect you, but that isn’t true at all. He’s trying to protect himself.
2. He wants to avoid any further consequences because of his behavior.
3. He’s very concerned about looking good. That’s why he’s not being honest about what he has done.
Numbers 32:23 says, Be sure, your sin will find you out.
There is so much truth in that verse.
I once had a client, and we had disclosed that there had been an infidelity. The husband assured his wife that he had told her everything there was to tell her. However, as we continued to work together, he became convicted because he had only dribbled the truth out, bit by bit. Finally, he admitted that he hadn’t been totally honest.
Her response was, “You burned the house down once; and now you’ve burned it down again.” What she meant was that they had started to rebuild on a brand new foundation, and because he hadn’t been completely honest with her, they had to start all over again.
Complete openness and honesty are the only solutions for ending an affair and rebuilding your trust in your husband and in your marriage. Ladies, it’s not the honesty that causes us pain. It’s the dishonesty. It’s not the truth that drives you crazy. It’s the deception.
Most husbands think that their wives can’t handle the truth, and beneath that, lies manipulation and disrespect. You have already been victimized by his infidelity, but by not getting the truth about his behaviors, you’re being victimized twice.
God has given you intuition, and once the truth comes out, everything else begins to become clear. This is exactly what happened to me. My husband would come home at night and I knew things weren’t right. Finally, I looked at him and said, “You’re here, but not really.” Once I discovered his infidelity, all the pieces of the puzzle started to fit together. Everything became clear.
Your husband is in no place to bargain; especially if he is serious about wanting to rebuild your trust. This relationship with his lover must end for life, and there is a way to do it.
You end an affair with one, final phone call.
For your phone call, he calls his lover, and he puts you on speakerphone. He lets her know that you’re there. This is his final goodbye to her, and he needs to state that he’s been selfish, and that he cares about you and his family. He needs to tell her that he’s going to do everything he can to protect his family. Then he tells her that he is rebuilding his marriage and he’s ending his relationship with her forever.
There will be no more phone calls, text messages, Facebook messages or face-to-face meetings with her. They will never see each other again. He does not mention anything to her about the hurt this may have caused her or how sorry he is. He ends the phone call at that point.
This phone call begins the process of you believing that he is finished with his lover, and solely focused on working on your marriage. Please understand that this is only the first step. It’s going to take many other steps of consistently and persistently rebuilding your trust, but this is how you can know for sure that he has ended the affair.
Have you recently found out that your husband has been having an affair? My job is to help Christian women heal from broken trust, fulfilling their desire to be valued, secure and fully loved. I would love to help you. Please feel free to contact me by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or book a complimentary call to see how I might best support you, and let’s set up a time to talk about the challenges you’re facing.
As women, there is sometimes our tendency is to overlook pornography when we discover our husbands have been watching it or using it. We tend to reason it away, telling ourselves things like:
He’s not really hurting anyone.
At least he’s not cheating on me with a real person.
He only watches pornography when I’m not available for him. What’s the harm in that?
I’d really rather not rock the boat, and if pornography is the worst thing he’s doing, I can live with that.
PORNOGRAPHY HAS NO PLACE IN A CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE
We do our marriages and ourselves a disservice when we allow this flippant attitude toward pornography to continue. Perhaps you’ve found that you really do mind if he watches pornography, but you don’t feel comfortable saying anything to him about it. Now is the time to stand up and let your voice be heard for the sake of your marriage.
PORNOGRAPHY STEALS FROM YOUR MARRIAGE
Pornography never blesses a marriage; it only takes from the marriage. By its very nature, it is deceptive, and it puts both you and your husband in harm’s way. Statistics show that about 25 million Americans spend as many as 10 hours per week looking at pornography on the Internet.
One of the biggest ways that pornography steals from your marriage is by inviting comparison to become a part of it. Once the habit of pornography takes root, you can’t help but wonder what your husband finds so attractive about the women he’s watching. You may find yourself asking why you’re not good enough for him, and how you can be more like them to make him happy. These thoughts are not of God, and this type of comparison will quickly steal your joy.
PORNOGRAPHY LOWERS YOUR SELF-WORTH
In Genesis 1:27, it says, So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. We cannot ignore the fact that we are created in God’s image, and so our self-worth should never be threatened. However, this is at the core of what pornography does in a marriage.
Self-worth is an issue for both men and women when pornography is at play in a marriage. For the man, he most likely uses pornography as a way to escape reality, and enter into another world. In this way, his self-worth is low when the pornography session begins, and when it ends. God never intended anything to come between a husband and a wife. His desire was to, Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and the adulterous. (Hebrews 13:4)
Both you and your husband are precious to God, and your marriage should be protected at all costs.
HEALING FROM PORNOGRAPHY WITH A CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE COACH
You may feel as though you don’t even know where to begin when it comes to talking with your husband about his pornography habit. Or, maybe you have tried to talk with him before, and your words of concern fell on deaf ears. It can help to talk with a Christian marriage coach about the best way for you to proceed. I would love to help you and give you the guidance you need. You can contact me at 843-379-0288, I can also be reached via my online scheduler, and you can request a free, complimentary call.
While it may seem difficult, with the right support, encouragement and Biblical counseling, you can tackle the topic of pornography in your marriage and begin to work toward the healing that you need.
Discovering that your spouse has had an affair you causes a range of emotions. You’re hurt, you’re confused, and eventually, you become angry. In this situation, you’re right to be angry because of what he has done. However, it’s important to understand that the anger you’re experiencing is only a temporary emotion, and there are right ways and wrong ways to express it, according to God’s Word.
YOUR ANGER AT YOUR SPOUSE’S AFFAIR AND YOUR INITIAL RESPONSES
Once the anger stage sets in, we rarely think rationally about our responses. At that point, we’re basically operating solely on our emotions, and that can be a dangerous place to be. Have you reacted in any of these ways?
Verbally bashing your spouse – Responding verbally can mean calling your spouse names, looking for excuses to get into shouting matches with him, or putting him down any chance you get. These responses only lead to resentment and they don’t do anything to heal your marriage, or your heart.
Non-verbally bashing your spouse – It is possible to bash your spouse in non-verbal ways, and we do this with gestures, with angry looks, or even just purposefully ignoring them.
Suppressing your anger – You feel angry on the inside, but you’re working really hard to hold it in. Maybe you don’t want to give in to it because you’re afraid it will make you appear weak, or it’s possible that you just don’t want to start an argument. This type of response might seem like the right one at first, but it can lead to a host of mental and physical problems for you later on.
Passive-aggressive behavior – Some become masters at passive aggressive anger, and maybe you have too. You may “forget” to complete a task your spouse has asked you to do, or you might begin being chronically late, or respond to them with sarcasm.
Complaining about your spouse – We often refer to this as “venting” and everyone feels as though they have the right to vent at some point. However, what you’re really doing is complaining, and you’re only feeding into the anger you already feel, instead of helping to heal it.
Physical aggression – Some act out in physically aggressive ways, and while they might not hit their spouse they will hit walls, throw objects across the room, or break things. It might feel good in the moment to react in this way, but it’s certainly not healthy.
ANGER ACCORDING TO GOD’S WORD
It may feel right for you to respond with emotional anger, but that kind of response never really helps you find a solution. God knew that we were all going to struggle with anger at some point in our lives, but in His wisdom, He provided us with self-control. If you’re not careful, anger can drag you into sin, and that’s something you want to avoid. Ephesians 4:26-27 says, “When you’re angry, do not sin; do not ever let your wrath (your exasperation, your fury or indignation) last until the sun goes down. Leave no room or foothold for the devil.”
Is your anger over your spouse’s affair righteous? Yes, it is. However, as Christians, we want to be sure we’re responding in ways that are righteous too.
Working with a Christian Marriage Coach can help you understand the root of your anger so that you can deal with it in ways that will help you, and not harm you. If you would like to talk with me about your personal situation, please contact me at 843-379-0288. You can also make an appointment through my online scheduler. Together, I’m confident that we can work through the source of your anger and help you find the healing you need.
Learning about your spouse has cheated on you has led to a flurry of emotional responses, and all of them are very normal. The shock you felt when you first found out eventually gave way to confusion and sadness, and then it led to anger. However, now, you’re beginning to feel hopeless and even disconnected from the outside world. You’re concerned that what you’re really experiencing is depression, and that thought might scare you.
Depression is a very natural response when you’ve spouse has cheated on you. However, it’s generally not something that’s long-lasting. It’s possible that you’re not really sure if what you’re feeling and experiencing is depression, but there are a few signs you can look for to determine if it is.
Grab your free copy of my eBook by clicking here and learn the 8 Surefire Strategies for Recovering from a Husband’s Affair
SIGNS OF DEPRESSION AFTER YOUR SPOUSE CHEATED ON YOU
Depression is caused by all kinds of things, but it can certainly set in for a period of time if you’ve been cheated on in your marriage. The following are some of the signs you can look for to help you understand if what you’re experiencing is sadness, or depression:
Changes in your mood – Feeling anxious, hopeless, feelings of apathy, guilt and mood swings
Changes in your sleeping patterns – Waking up earlier than normal, feeling fatigued all day long, having insomnia or restless sleep
Changes in your body – Feeling excessively hunger or having no appetite at all, feeling tired, or feeling restless
Changes in your behavior – Getting agitated easily, crying, feeling irritable or wanting to isolate yourself socially
Changes in your mind – Finding it difficult to concentrate, responding to other slowly
You may also experience weight gain or weight loss, and that is an indicator of depression as well.
FINDING COMFORT IN GOD
More than anything, God longs for you to turn to Him during this difficult time in your life. His heart is broken because of the hopelessness and despair you may be feeling, and He wants nothing more than to wrap His arms around you and help you to heal. God’s Word is very clear about what He desires for you if you’re feeling depression setting in.
Matthew 11:28-30 says, “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.”
1 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.”
Isaiah 41:10 says, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
All throughout God’s Word, there are promises for you to cling to. God has nothing but good plans for your life, and while He didn’t promise us that there would never be trials for us to endure, He did promise us that He would be with us through them all.
GETTING HELP FROM A PROFESSIONAL
God is just waiting for you to turn to Him. His arms are open for you, but sometimes it requires the help and support of a professional to allow you to work through the thoughts and feelings that are contributing to depression. Talking with a Christian Marriage Coach and is a really good way to learn more about what God’s Word says about your situation, and it can help you work through your pain in ways that will only lead to good things for your life.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with me, I’d love to hear from you. Please contact me at 843-379-0288, or you can use my convenient online scheduler to make an appointment as well.
Remember, depression is not here to stay. With God’s help, all things are possible; even healing when struggling with depression after your spouse cheated on you.