Q&A Do you Ever Recommend Separating?

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Question: 

Hi Rick,

My spouse and I have spent thousands of dollars trying to recover from an affair last year, including over a year of couples' therapy, EMS Online, and I did many sessions of EMDR that focussed on getting over the trauma of D-Day and intrusive images of the specific sex acts that had been disclosed. We were doing better and I was beginning finally to feel normal and have hope. Last week we had another D-Day at which I learned that the affair was much worse then I had known, and that the sex acts by which I had been so traumatized were only a small part of much more upsetting activities. As you can imagine, this has been awful; I am back to that place betrayed spouses know so well: not eating or sleeping and a mind assaulted by terrible images. I can't bear to think about starting this process over. I am relieved the truth is finally out, but I feel broken and exhausted. I much have been trying so hard to protect our children from the consequences of my spouse's choices, but it seems that at some point I have to think about my own physical and mental health. Do you ever recommend separating and dating other people, just to get a break from the pain? I truly do not want a 'revenge affair' but I feel like if I don't disconnect from my spouse and get some comfort and attachment from somewhere I will not able to keep going and this will be worse for us all in the long run. Getting through the day as a working professional and a parent is so hard right now and I don't think church or long walks with friends will soothe the pain quickly enough for me to have the stamina to keep going. (And, yes, I do get the irony that this is the rationale that many betraying spouses have made in the first place). Any suggestions, or even just words of encouragement?

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