Rick Reynolds, LCSW
by Rick Reynolds, LCSW
Founder & President, Affair Recovery

Common Mistakes Made When Recovering from Infidelity

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After the revelation of an affair or other sexually inappropriate behavior, it is, unfortunately, very easy for both the unfaithful spouse and the betrayed spouse to make a series of well-meaning mistakes which further complicate the situation and the healing process.

Listed below are just a few of these common mistakes. We hope that this information will help guide you!

The Unfaithful Spouse's Common Mistakes

  • Being defensive: Since the revelation of a betrayal is extremely traumatic, there is no room for defensiveness. The antidote to defensiveness is taking personal responsibility.
  • Leaking out information over time: Getting the truth out, all of it, is a great opportunity to display real integrity and safety, something you may feel you've been lacking if you've had to hide your actions or lie. Don't miss your chance. Tell the whole truth as soon as you can.
  • Not being consistent in your recovery plan: After a betrayal, there is an obvious problem with trust. To re-establish trust, an unfaithful spouse has to be consistent in what he or she says and does. The only thing a hurt spouse can rebuild on are your behaviors. If you are consistent and do what you say, then over time your mate can begin to trust again. But if you fail to follow through with what you say, it will only serve to reinforce your mate's distrust.

Common Mistakes of the Betrayed Spouse:

  • Bludgeoning your spouse with guilt: Your spouse already knows that what they have been doing is wrong, even if they will not admit it to you. Pointing such things out will usually only serve to push them away.
  • Trying to drive the affair partner off with a personal confrontation: Confronting the affair partner to make him or her feel guilty usually only encourages the affair partner to think that in the end, you will leave them. This may give the impression that the affair partner has all the power and actually encourage them to believe that the affair might turn into a long-term relationship.
  • Believing that you should or can do the same thing: You may feel a desire to show your unfaithful spouse how it feels to be betrayed and think that if you do, your spouse will ultimately come crawling back. It may bring them back. It may not. I have clients who have tried this approach, only to find their lives are far more complicated, because they have the pain of their mate's infidelity and the guilt from their own unfaithfulness.

Remember, these are the most common mistakes we see at Affair Recovery, so if you've made one or all of them, you are not the first. It does not mean that your marriage is doomed; it means that you are hurt, you are human, you need helpful information, and you need to pursue healing. It's never too late to heal!

And whether you've made none of these mistakes, made one, or made all of them, it's time to kickstart the healing process. EMS Weekend puts couples 4-6 months down the road of recovery in just three days. The weekend intensive will provide you with expert guidance, group support, and a deep dive into the critical elements needed for healing.

Cover more ground faster with the life-changing experience of EMS Weekend for couples.

This isn't another light-and-fluffy program that only scratches the surface of your pain. The EMS Weekend Experience is a safe space for you and your partner to start putting the pieces of your life back together, transform your trauma and begin healing from infidelity. Skeptical about the effectiveness of this experience? Don't be! Backed by a slew of previous participant testimonials, EMS Weekend delivers results month after month for countless couples.

During EMS Weekend, we won't shame the unfaithful spouse nor blame the betrayed spouse. What we will do is pair you with a small community of other couples and an expert therapist - all of whom have experienced infidelity firsthand - as well as provide comprehensive resources to help you kick-start your healing journey.

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EMS Virtual weekend May 15-17

Wayne I am the betrayed and have been trying since my first D-Day 7/2000 to get my WW to try and work on US. The AP was my friend since 1966. My last D-Day was 12/31/2019 which was a one night stand 3 years prior to our Marriage in 1982. We have been together since 1976. It took close to 20 Years for her to do her Timeline with my help. I'm in week 6 of HH and my Wife is in week 5 of H4H. We also singed up for the May 15-17 Virtual EMS Weekend as soon as we saw they were going that way. I have struggled with this everyday for the last 20 Years and have never given up on making this work. Do you think this will really help us get the results we need and I so Hope for?

Thanks for all you do,

EMS Virtual Weekend! - Yes! There's Hope and Healing!

Its saving our marriage. Wayne was our small group leader in the April (1st ) EMS Virtual Weekend. Our D day Dec 18, 2019. The EMS virtual weekend was the most incredible experience! Wayne was and is truly instrumental in our healing. He was compassionate and non-judging. While our small group began as strangers within seconds we became family. I finally wasn't alone. I was heard. And I wasn't crazy. It saved me. We are a work in progress, not complete, but working towards healing and not destruction. As the betrayed, I began to open my heart and think of my own spouse, the one that killed my heart. How could I ever do that, be empathetic to him? My love for him opened as we learned why and where he/we are at risk. I see my husband healing. I see a new husband that I have longed for. I too have work to do. We are doing the work and while we aren't perfect in the work, we are learning. Yes a roller coaster but Wayne, Rick and the others have taught us what to expect and how to navigate this and to have Hope. We are working on the new "us". The encouragement is real. For those of you in it this weekend, hang in there! Work at it! Stay in it!

EMS Virtual weekend May

Thanks for your response. We were blown away by how far we were able to come in three long days. I'm in Harboring Hope and my Wife is in Hope four Healing and this was by far much more intense plus having other couples all together really helped. So happy to hear you are also doing better. We start the beyond EMS next week. Is it as good do you think?
Good luck,

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