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.
Discovering that your husband has been unfaithful can have a devastating effect on your self worth. Your self-esteem can take a drastic hit that can cause you to have difficulty thinking clearly, and as a result, so many women tend to end up blaming themselves for their marriages falling apart.
Perhaps this is how you have been feeling lately, and even though others have told you that it’s not your fault, you can’t help but think that it is. You may catch yourself time and time again playing the “If only…” game.
If only I had paid him more compliments.
If only I hadn’t been so unreasonable.
If only I was prettier.
If only I was thinner.
If only I was funnier.
If only I was more fun to be around.
In essence, you are beginning to think that you’re not good enough; not for your husband, and certainly not for yourself.
THE TRUTH ABOUT WHO YOU ARE
As Christian women, we do ourselves a disservice when we forget about what the Word of God says about who we are in Christ. God’s Word is powerful, and true, and upon studying it, we learn that:
Colossians 2:10 says that you are complete in Him who is the Head of all principality and power.
Ephesians 2:5 says that you are alive with Christ.
1 John 5:18 says that you are born of God, and the evil one does not touch me.
Ephesians 1:4 says that I you are holy and without blame before Him in love.
1 Corinthians 2:16 says that you have the mind of Christ.
1 John 4:4 says that you have the Greater One living in me; greater is He who is in me than he who is in the world.
Ephesians 2:10 says that you are God’s workmanship, created in Christ unto good works.
There is no denying who God says you are, and anything that whispers in your ear and tells you that you’re less than His best is from the enemy.
PRACTICAL WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR SELF-WORTH
It’s not enough to read through the Bible and see the truth about who you are one time. This is something you need to get down into your spirit, and it can help to know some practical ways that you can improve your self-worth. Finding out that your husband has been having an affair is an incredible blow to your self-esteem and self-worth. One of the reasons this occurs because you feel like you’ve lost control. The time to start rebuilding your self-worth is now, and there are a few things you can do:
Stop blaming yourself for what happened, and every time you start to place the blame on you, take notice, and correct yourself.
Don’t compare yourself to the other woman. This will only lead to more negative thoughts about your self worth.
Prayerfully consider what you want your future to look like, and what your goals are for your marriage. Keep those in front of you.
Take time for yourself to properly care for yourself and your own needs.
Consider getting help from a Christian marriage coach who will lead you according to God’s Word and help you understand the steps you need to take next.
The road you’re on is a difficult one to navigate all on your own. If you would like to reach me you can email me at email@example.com . Or if you would like to speak with me you can schedule a time for us to talk. I would love to support you. .
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 firstname.lastname@example.org or if you’d like to speak with me you can schedule a time for us to talk.
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.
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.