Q&A Is There Anything to Salvage Here?

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My question is In reference to an article in which you refer to a car being stolen, stripped and sold for parts. It offers hope that although the parts of the car the family thought were most important were gone, they were able to savage things of a higher importance. One of my largest hang ups in making the decision to reconcile is that I feel there is nothing "special" or sacred left to the marriage after my husband’s physical and emotional affair. The only thing he didn't actually do was leave (myself and the children) and I'm really not sure why he neglected to leave since nothing else of our relationship seemed to hold enough value to maintain. As I see it the things that make a marriage different from any other relationship are as follows:

  1. Agreement to take one’s self off the market, assuming my because you believe that you have found and selected someone of value. 
  2. Agreement not to engage in certain activities outside that chosen partner, I.e. Sexual activities. 
  3. Maintain emotional connection and intimacy to a higher standard than other relationships. 

All three of these agreements were broken, reducing the value of the marriage to nothing more than any previous relationship. He couldn't even stay loyal in neglecting to present me as nothing short of a monster. What are these things that you might be referring to in the article which might be salvaged in a situation in which the marriage has been reduced to less than the cost of the ink the marriage license was printed on?

My second question is regarding a statement in the EMO handbook that indicates married couples earlier in marriage have more difficulty surviving an affair: we were married 2 1/2 years when he began communicating with the affair partner. It was following a life transition in which he'd been let go of his 15 year career in law enforcement due to small town politics (leaving feelings of betrays, injustice and vengeance). It took about 8 months to become physical and he immediately ended the affair once I found out. I'm wondering what struggles you've seen when the affair occurs early on in a marriage? Personally, It adds to my feelings that the marriage must not have meant much to him, being able to engage in an affair so early on. Most couples seem to have at least 7-10 years before the affair begins or is discovered. I look forward to hearing your thoughts regarding these subjects. Thank you.



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