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Boundaries on the Job After a Work-Related Affair

Boundaries on the Job After a Work-Related Affair

If your husband has had a work-related affair, the news of it probably came as quite a shock to you. Whether you found out on your own, or he disclosed it to you, it hurt more than you can explain.

But perhaps you and your husband are willing to put the time into restoring trust and healing your marriage. That is a commendable decision, and it can be a really difficult one to make. It can be so helpful to know how to set appropriate boundaries on the job. Therefore, you need to know that your husband is being faithful to you when he’s at work. In doing so, he will need to be doing his part to provide you with a sense of security you need while he’s on the job.

Committing to Never Spending Time Alone With a Co-Worker

It’s normal to have a favorite co-worker at the office or on the job. But your husband should not choose a favorite who is a woman. Doing so puts your marriage in jeopardy because it can lead to communications that can quickly become inappropriate.

When a husband has had a work-related affair, he should maintain clearly drawn lines you set for him. Your husband and the opposite sex should never spend time alone with each other. There can be no physical contact except an appropriate handshake.  And he should avoid any type of behavior that you would not approve of.

That includes getting in the elevator with another woman going for walks, texting, and minimizing business travel.  After a husband has an affair he will do well to eliminate or greatly reduce time that allows for one-on-one interaction with a female. He must take your sense of security extremely seriously.

Committing to Avoid Sharing Details About His Marriage

Women are, by default, really good listeners. Men recognize this, which is why so many men gravitate toward women they work with when they have affairs. In addition to being more discreet in many ways, women at work provide them with someone they can confide in.

Your husband should commit to not sharing anything about your marriage with another woman at work. Whether that means venting about something that bothers him, or sharing something that he had only previously shared with you. Providing any type of information like that is only a way to build intimacy with someone who is not his wife.

Committing to His Work Schedule

There may be some jobs that offer flexible hours, or even require late nights or early mornings. But for the most part, your husband probably has a start time and a stop time at his job. He should be willing to make a commitment to you to come home immediately after work. So many affairs start because the husband uses the excuse of having to work late.

If your husband truly does have to work late, it’s not unreasonable to ask him to be in communication with you frequently during that time. That way, you will feel more assured that his lateness is truly because of something unavoidable at work.

Have You Been Betrayed Because of an Affair?

Perhaps you are in this situation yourself, and your spouse recently disclosed a work-related affair. It’s understand how you feel, and the pain you are having is very real. But please know that healing is possible.

You may be in a position where both you and your spouse are willing to work through the affair so you can reconcile. Or, you may be contemplating separation. It is also possible that you aren’t sure what to do, or where to turn.

The Word of God has so much to say about your situation. God has healing in store for you, and together, we can take the steps to see that healing manifested in your life. The road you’re on may seem lonely and endless right now, but you can go from betrayal to healing.

Honesty in Marriage After an Affair

Honesty in Marriage After an Affair

When you realized that your husband had been having an affair, you were presented with a choice. You either had to decide to separate and possibly divorce, or you had to work through his betrayal. It might have been a hard decision, but if you both agreed to work through it, then nothing is as important to you right now than honesty and telling the truth.

One of the biggest consequences of an affair – even for couples who decide to work it out – is the loss of trust. Once trust is gone, it can be so challenging to get it back. It can be done, but it definitely takes work.

There are some steps your husband can take to begin the process of restoring trust in your marriage. Let’s talk about what they are.

Commit to Rigorous Honesty

Husbands who have been unfaithful may be in such a pattern of dishonesty that it feels odd for them to tell the truth. Their knee-jerk reaction may be to continue lying, but to do it in a way that is more effective. Unfortunately, those lies pile up and they end up doing nothing to build trust.

Rigorous honesty may not be easy, and it is certainly isn’t fun. It means telling their wives about everything. So they need to be honest about things that might hurt them and make them look bad, as well as things that are not exactly convenient to confide.

Telling the truth quickly is the key, and wives should always be kept in the loop about everything from how much money was spent that day and on what, to any type of questionable social interaction.

As your husband’s wife, you have the right to expect this type of honesty. After an affair, it is more important that you get it now than ever before.

Commit to the Relationship Restoration Process

A lot of husbands quickly become frustrated when they have to wait for trust to be restored in their marriages. They often fall into the trap of thinking that as long as the infidelity stopped, everything should be fine. But that isn’t the way it works at all.

As the betrayed spouse, the hurt and the pain that you feel cuts deep. It’s not something that can be healed just because the action that caused it has stopped. It takes time to get the kind of healing you need, and it’s something that only God can do for you.

Your husband needs to understand what it means to commit to the relationship restoration process. That means absolute honesty about everything all the time, maintaining a commitment to change, and abide by the boundaries set forth in marriage.

Committing to Honesty and Making the Marriage Work

If your husband has made a commitment with you to work on your marriage, that’s wonderful. As believers, we know that relying on God to help us and heal our marriages is exactly what we need to do. But it isn’t always easy to stay on track, and it can be helpful to have someone working alongside you to help you.

As a Christian marriage coach and counselor, I have been able to help so many couples work through their differences. You may be going through the pain of an affair, and are are struggling with what to do and how to move forward. Others may be headed in the direction of an affair, and it all goes back to their issues with honesty and transparency.

God talks about the importance of honesty in so many places in His Word. Proverbs 12:22 says, “The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy.” The Bible is a wonderful blueprint for our lives, but sometimes people need guidance in order to see its truths and apply them to their lives.

I can help you if you are struggling because of an affair in your marriage. Together, we can make a plan to help you both make a commitment to honesty as we seek God together. When honesty is applied to marriage, the result is something beautiful. I would love to help you begin your journey toward healing.

Why Did God Let This Happen?

Why Did God Let This Happen?

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:

  • Grief
  • Anger
  • Bitterness
  • Mistrust
  • Sadness

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 hello@drcarolerb.com .  Or if you would like to speak with me let’s 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.

How Do I Deal With Triggers?

How Do I Deal With Triggers?

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 are 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 hello@drcarolerb.com or if you’d like to speak with me you can schedule a time for us to talk.

His Infidelity Isn’t Your Fault

His Infidelity Isn’t Your Fault

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 hello@drcarolerb.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.

How to End An Affair

How to End An Affair

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 hello@drcarolerb.com, 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.

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