Laurie Bryson
by Laurie Bryson, M.A., LPC
Member, EMS Weekend Specialist

2 Things You Must Understand About the Disclosure Process


The disclosure process is usually the most painful and confusing aspect of recovering from infidelity. It can also be the biggest barrier for couples trying to get unstuck.

Get a plan for the disclosure process by joining EMS Online. This course is comprised of expert methodology honed from decades of experience exclusively in the field of infidelity to better serve couples as they address the betrayal, work through disclosure, reconnect as partners and restore their lives.

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As a concept, it doesn't seem that difficult. Painful, yes, but can't it be easier? Well, yes to both. It is painful, and it can be simpler than most people make it.

Today, we're going to discuss two important aspects of disclosure that can bring clarity and speed to the healing process for both partners. In short, disclosure is about uncovering what happened – the when, the how, and the who. Revealing the secrets that have been kept in the relationship is crucial for healing and moving forward.

Ultimately, we want everyone to find healing and freedom. In order for that to happen, the disclosure process must be complete. We want you to be able to move on to the next stage of healing.

Let's start with what happens to the betrayed mate when they do not have full disclosure: Choice is taken away. A fundamental aspect of adulthood is the ability to make choices about our daily life and about our future. When choice is taken away, in essence, we are held captive to the event or circumstance, making us feel trapped, dehumanized, and very much like a victim. The betrayed partner desperately needs to have a choice in how they respond, but they do not have that unless they have all the information.

Wayward partners, if this is hard for you to think about, consider the fact that the marriage proposal itself was a choice. Will you marry me? Yes, yes, I will. The affair, the pornography, the acting out, whatever it was, those actions have taken choice away from your mate.

The discovery process starts with recognizing that the most important part for the betrayed is knowing what happened and giving them a choice in how to respond. Without it, they are robbed of dignity and respect that everyone should have. Nothing will keep the betrayed mate in a state of feeling crazy, helpless, and stuck more than robbing them of the choice to know what happened.

Notice I did not say the discovery process will necessarily cover the "why." That is an important question for both the wayward and betrayed to ultimately understand. Answers to that question tend to come in layers and over time.

It's important to realize that full disclosure takes longer than we would like. It's not easy. While this isn't justifying infidelity, it's common for couples to initially improve but then find there is more information and take what feels like a step back.

For the wayward, you've been in a pattern of deception, and you're now making the choice to live differently, to become an honest person. The longer that pattern of deception has been going on, the more painful it is to work through. This pattern of deception has served a purpose in many dysfunctional ways.

Let's use the analogy of restoring floors—it's like finding original hardwood floors beneath old, stained carpeting. The carpet has to be ripped up. It's heavy and messy. The tack board and staples have to be pulled out of the floor, and that's very tedious work. You think you are done with that stage of the project until you step on a nail and realize you hadn't gotten them all.

Many times, the shame that accompanies lying and deception can serve as an awful barrier – like that old carpet you've got to get rid of.

I'm here to tell you that hope can be found.

Share and share some more. Get out the ugly stuff so the renovation can begin. It may restart the clock, but it's worth it because the betrayed deserves the choice to know.

One of the most practical and helpful concepts we hope to give you today is to think about choice and the need for empowerment in your relationship.

Wayward, if your betrayed mate is questioning you over and over and asking for information, they are most likely begging for a choice.

Betrayed, if your wayward spouse seems to be struggling with disclosing all of the information, are they at all able to see through the shame or layers of dysfunction and deception? Maybe they aren't there yet. Remember, the restoration process for the wayward doesn't happen quickly either.

Sometimes, all we can see is what's in front of us, and we have no vision for how to change it. But if we change our viewpoint ever so slightly, that can make all the difference. We can go from feeling helpless and frustrated to patiently walking through the process.

In addition to joining EMS Online, there are other resources we encourage you to explore as you work through the disclosure process. Start the Free 7 Day First Steps Bootcamp if you haven't yet. This bootcamp is a powerful tool to use as you begin walking out this journey of healing. You can also explore free resources within the Handling Discovery section of our Recovery Library.

To healing.



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How can you get full disclosure when the infidelity occurred when your partner was very drunk and claims that they don't remember what actually happened?


exactly. or, the disclosure has happened but now he says he remembers no names or anything.

And it's not just about

And it's not just about getting full disclosure when infidelity occurred while they were drunk, it's also about accepting full responsibility for the choice to drink and for decisions/actions that occurred while under the influence.

Me: You texted her "I love you" that night.
Him: I was ripped, I'm not responsible for saying that.

So it's a double betrayal when your partner's drinking makes you feel unsafe, and then he commits infidelity on top of that. But he's "not responsible" because he was drunk. What a load of bunk.

I'm sorry Lori.

So good…and so right, Laurie.

So good…and so right, Laurie.

What type of affair was it?

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-D, Texas