A thought many women have once they discover their husband has betrayed them is: “God, why did you let this happen?” This is a question that many women ask when they’re faced with the reality of an infidelity or if sexual addiction taking over their marriages. Perhaps you feel this way too. You’ve been doing your very best to live your life purely before the Lord. You read your Bible, you attend church, you pray, and you serve God in everything you do. You know you’re not perfect, but you’re doing your best and relying on God to give you the strength to be obedient to Him.
Discovering that your husband has hidden sin can shatter your entire world, not to mention your marriage. You experience an entire range of emotions, including:
Above you, you would like to know the answer to the question, why did God let this happen? and life can be very confusing for you until you find it.
The Gift of Free Will and the Sovereignty of God
Genesis 3:6 says, “The woman was convinced. She saw that the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious, and she wanted the wisdom it would give her. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. Then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it, too.”
Free will is something that God placed within us as humans because He wants us to be able to choose to love Him or not. He wants us to choose to trust Him, and He doesn’t desire to have people who are forced to be obedient. Our God is a genuine God, and He wants our love for Him to be just as genuine. Just as Eve exercised her free will when she choose to eat the fruit from the tree, your husband has also exercised his free will.
This does not mean that God is not sovereign. He is. In fact He is referred to as sovereign more than 300 times in scripture. Just because your husband made the decision to sin, that does not mean that God is not still in control.
All Things Work Together for Good
Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”
Even though it may seem difficult to understand, God is in the process right now of working this betrayal out for your good. Yes, it will hurt, and it may continue to hurt for quite some time. Pruning is painful, but it is something that God allows to happen in our lives from time to time. God’s ultimate goal for you is that you will bear more fruit in your life, but that only occurs when you’re able to trust in Him, despite the circumstances you’re facing. It is so important for you to be aware of this pruning process so that you don’t become bitter, angry or mistrustful about what God is doing in your life.
There are so many stories in the Bible of times when God worked miracles out of something that seemed to be terrible situations. Consider Joseph as he was in prison when he did nothing wrong, or the story of the birth of the Savior to a virgin woman who could have been stoned for being an adulteress. God will work this out for your good, and if you place your trust in His ability to do it, He will bless you.
Help from a Christian Marriage Coach
The pain you are experiencing is so very real, but please, do not be caught in a trap of placing the blame on God. God loves you so very much, and He wants nothing more than your healing and restoration.
It can help to talk with someone who understands God’s Word and His direction for your life if you’re facing the reality of a betrayal in your marriage. If you would like to reach me you may do so at firstname.lastname@example.org . Or if you would like to speak with me go to my website drcarolerb.com and schedule a time for us to talk. . I’ve been able to help so many women navigate these difficult waters. And, I would love to support you. Hangeth thou in there and I’m sending you God’s grace and peace.
I want to address something that occurs for all women who’ve been sexually betrayed. It’s called triggers. Also known as a meltdown. A trigger is something that sets off a memory, which takes you back to the event of your original trauma. Triggers are very personal; different things trigger different people. Triggers might be one of the most difficult aspects of dealing with the aftermath of infidelity. Unfortunately, they are quite common, and the betrayed spouse will often experience them when encountering certain locations, words or events that remind them of the betrayal they experienced in their marriage. If you’re not careful, triggers can take over your life; even causing you to avoid going to events or to places that bring up thoughts that you don’t want to think about.
It’s possible that you’ve noticed some triggers in your own life, and in your marriage that is starting to affect the way you live your life. Let’s talk about what some common triggers are and how you can cope with them.Trigger #1: Your Home
Unfortunately, in many marriages, the infidelity that occurred often took place in the couple’s home. When this is discovered, it can be so heartbreaking, and it isn’t surprising that many betrayed spouses begin to view their home as something they despise. If your spouse has disclosed that sexual relations between him and his lover took place in your home, this is a powerful trigger for you. It’s normal for you to want to move, and if you choose to do so, and your spouse should support you in that if he is willing to work on rebuilding your marriage.
Trigger #2: People Who Knew of the Affair
There are usually more people who know of an affair, other than just the two people involved. These individuals may be co-workers, friends or family members. Sometimes, an affair is minimized or even accepted by those who know about it. The knowledge of an affair can make these individuals triggers for you, and you may not want to spend time with them. However, there are some cases when confronting them is warranted; especially if they are family members or mutual friends. Whether you choose to confront them and attempt to repair your relationship with them eventually, or you opt to remove them from your life for the time being, that is a decision that you spouse should support.
Trigger #3: Suspicious Behaviors
When you think back to the time before you realized your spouse was having an affair, you may notice that there were many behaviors that should have cued you in to what was going on. For example, you might remember long nights at the office, overnight business trips, flirtatious behavior with other women, you could recall picking up your spouse’s phone and finding that all of his text messages had been erased. These behaviors can be triggers too, and even though they might be innocent now, they can alert you to the possibility of another affair. Talk with your spouse about how these behaviors affect you, and ask him to make changes.
Trigger #4: Distant Behavior
Quite often, there is a distance that is felt between a husband and a wife before an affair is revealed, and while it’s impossible to immediately get back the closeness you once shared, your spouse should be making an effort to close in the distance between you as much as possible. Distant behavior can be a major trigger, and it’s up to your spouse to help remove it.
If your marriage has recently suffered through a betrayal, I can assist you with understanding what triggers are affecting you, and work with you to help you get on a path to healing. You can reach me at email@example.com or if you’d like to speak with me you can schedule a time for us to talk.
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.
It’s fairly common to hear couples say that they refuse to forgive their spouses because for them, forgiveness means that the wrong behavior is OK. I think it’s important for us to remember that the world has a false idea of what forgiveness is, and in order to properly define it, we need to go back to God’s Word. Is forgiveness the same as reconciliation?
In Romans 13:8, it says, “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another.”
The world believes that forgiveness isn’t a necessary part of life, nor should it be a necessary part of marriage. Worldly experts are constantly advising people to hang onto their anger as a way to protect themselves from getting hurt again. However, some actually advise the opposite. They tell people who have been hurt that they can’t trust their emotions, and they need to push those negative thoughts out of their minds and continually forgive, regardless of how they feel. Many experts even believe that as long as you pray, all of your resentments will be healed and gone.
As you can see, the so-called “expert” opinions on forgiveness vary so much that it’s hard to know what you should believe. While some of these opinions might sound OK on the surface, they are wrong. The truth is that unforgiveness and resentment has a tendency to fester. It can and will eat at you, and eventually it will kill your love for the person you’re refusing to forgive. However, forgiveness cannot be done overnight. It’s a process that does take time.
In addition, it’s important to understand the differences between forgiveness and reconciliation.
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IS FORGIVENESS THE SAME AS RECONCILIATION?
Perhaps you’ve been holding onto some type of hurt because you don’t want to be reconciled with your spouse; at least not yet. As a result, you’re refusing to forgive. You don’t have to reconcile with your spouse the moment you forgive him or her, and the two things are really very different.
Forgiveness is about you extending mercy and grace to the person who hurt you. Remember, mercy is when you get something you don’t deserve to get, while grace is when you don’t get what you do deserve. When you forgive, you’re setting your offender free, and you’re placing that person on God’s “hook” instead on yours. You’re not denying the fact that you were hurt because that would not be possible. Instead, you’re giving yourself permission to feel the hurt and then you’re releasing it so that it doesn’t have power over you any longer. Furthermore, forgiveness only takes one person – you. Reconciliation takes two people.
THE 3 STAGES OF FORGIVENESS
Forgiveness generally happens in stages, and it’s not something that can occur all at once. It’s essential to go through the stages of forgiveness before you can actually forgive. Those stages are:
#1. Facing the Offense: You have to face the reality of the negative effect the offense has had on your life. You also need to realize that being treated that way is not something that’s OK with you.
#2. Feeling the Offense: If you refuse to feel the pain you’re in, you’re actually denying that pain. Denial is not something you want to live in.
#3. Forgiving the Offender: Choosing to forgive is often the hardest thing to do, but it can also be the most rewarding, even if you never get an apology. Remember, forgiveness is not about forgetting what happened, but it is about releasing the debt of the person who caused the pain.
Are you struggling with unforgiveness? I’ve worked with many women over the years who were trapped by unforgiveness. If you’re waging this battle, I’d like to help you find the healing you need to forgive and move on.
If you’d like to talk with a Christian marriage coach about working toward forgiveness, I’d love to help you. Please contact me at 843-379-0288. You can also contact me through my online scheduler for a free complimentary call. I’m available face to face, over the phone or via video call. When you hold onto unforgiveness, the only person who truly suffers is you. With the right kind of professional help, you can embrace forgiveness and freedom from those heavy chains.
Once you’ve realized your spouse has cheated to you, it’s difficult to think about putting the pieces of your marriage back together again. You feel absolutely shattered, and you’re not really sure what you should do. Maybe you’d like to try to make it work, but it all seems so hopeless.
This is where many couples give up, and one or both of them make some major mistakes that lead to the end of the marriage. Let’s talk about five reasons why most marriages fail after cheating.
MISTAKE # 1: THEY DON’T TAKE THE TIME TO HEAL
One of the things many individual do after they’ve discovered that their spouse has been cheating is attempt to jump right into making everything feel as normal as possible. In doing so, they’re rushing through the healing process, and there is a reason why healing is a process and not something that can occur overnight. It’s vital for you to work through the emotions that this betrayal has caused for you, and that means taking the necessary time to heal.
MISTAKE #2: THEY TRY AND “FIX” THEIR SPOUSE
After you’ve been cheated on, it’s a normal response for you to try to make everything right again. Chances are, you’ve thought long and hard about what happened between you and your spouse what may have led to his cheating. You know exactly what needs to change, and you think you know how to change it. This never works. You can never “fix” your spouse, and any attempt to fix him may even do more damage than good.
MISTAKE #3: THEY SUCCUMB TO THEIR ANGER
Anger is a normal response once you learn about your spouse’s cheating, and to some extent, expressing your anger is an important part of the healing process. However, dealing with your anger is so important and there are healthy ways for you to deal with it. When your anger gets out of control, it can actually sabotage your healing, and that’s definitely not something you want to have happen.
MISTAKE #4: THEY FAIL TO TRY TO UNDERSTAND WHAT CAUSED THE CHEATING
At some point, it’s important for you to try to understand the circumstances that led to your spouse’s cheating. While this is certainly not something you should be expected to do right away, eventually, it will help you to know what causes them to sin sexually. Once you can work on this understanding, you’ll also find that you’re releasing your control over their behavior, and allowing them to be responsible for his own actions.
MISTAKE #5: THEY FAIL TO GET PROFESSIONAL HELP
Once cheating has occurred in your marriage, attempting to heal on your own is almost impossible. There are so many emotions involved, and it’s difficult for you to make sense of everything that has happened. You need guidance, and it’s even better if that guidance is backed by the Word of God. Getting a professional to talk with you demonstrates your willingness to work through the sin that has occurred so that you can embrace healing and move forward in your marriage.
A FINAL THOUGHT
Remember, your marriage and family legacy is your greatest asset. When you have been devastated by a cheating spouse in marriage the main thing that is on your mind is to get out of the pain. The pathway out of your pain is to avoid the five major reasons why marriages fail after cheating, while finding the right Christian coach or counselor who has the perfect step-by-step plan to move you out of your pain.
A plan that works.
Has your marriage been suffering because of a sexual betrayal? Maybe you’ve even made some of these mistakes, but you’re not sure what else to do. A Christian Marriage Coach and Counselor can help you see things a different way, and shed God’s light on a situation that otherwise seems hopeless.
If you’ve recently found out that your spouse has had an affair, (or if you’ve known for some time) your response is likely to be one of shock, disbelief and anger. It’s completely normal for you to feel as though you want to talk to someone about what you’ve discovered. However, the problem is that we tend to want to talk to too many of the wrong people. Who are safe people to talk to after an affair.
Sexual sin is incredibly debilitating to a marriage relationship. You are hurt and once the shock wears off, you’re probably going to feel furious and as though you need to vent. Even so, it’s important to be sure you’re talking about the situation to the right type of people so that you can get the help you really need. You need to identify the difference between safe people and unsafe people.
It might come as a surprise that many of the people you might naturally gravitate to for the purpose of discussing your spouse’s affair are unsafe people. Family members and friends often fall into this category simply because they may directly or indirectly blame you for what happened or assume that something is wrong with you that caused the betrayal. They may encourage you to run away from the problem or get a divorce, which is not always the answer when one spouse has cheated on another.
As a matter of fact, you even need to be very wise about whom you talk within your church. Their intentions are usually good, and they want what’s best for you, but sometimes those in the church community give advice that’s more harmful than good. For example, if you’re a wife whose husband has been unfaithful, they may tell you to seek out Scripture that directs you to submit to his sexual desires, which is advice that doesn’t take into consideration the root of the problem that caused the betrayal. It also minimizes the depth of your spouse’s sexual problems.
Simply put, unsafe people will give you unwanted advice. They will try to fix the situation simply because they are not comfortable with your grief and anger.
An individual is a safe person to talk to if you already know this person will love you and accept you unconditionally. It’s natural for you to want to vent to someone who listens, but you need to be sure that the information you share is safe with him or her. You don’t need to talk with anyone who will gossip about you or your situation. Also, it’s not necessary for that person to attempt to fix anything. What is necessary is Biblical encouragement and prayer. The person you choose to vent to should be very sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit and should not be taken aback by your angry emotions.
CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE COACHING
The best person for you to talk to is a professional, Christian marriage coach who has training in the area of pornography and sexual addictions and there are a lot of reasons for this. Your counselor or coach will talk with you in depth about the situation you’re in and he or she will pray for you as well about what you should do next. You’ll find nothing but direction, acceptance and love as you work through the issues facing your marriage.
If you would like to make an appointment to talk with a Christian marriage coach, we’d love to hear from you. Your location is no problem. Aside from meeting face-to-face, we work via video call and phone. You can contact us at 843-379-0288, or feel free to schedule your appointment using our online scheduler.
The issues you’re facing right now are difficult, and they require a lot of prayer and wise counsel before you proceed. We would love to help you. And, if you have been faced with unsafe people in your healing journey, we’d love to hear your story. Send us a reply!