Am I Stupid for Staying “If my husband ever cheated on me I’d leave him in a heartbeat.” This is what one of our friends blurted out in reference to the news of some celebrity’s infidelity. The woman who made this comment didn’t know that I had been unfaithful to my wife. This was not the first time we heard someone say this – and it would not be the last. It was early on in our recovery and this was a major trigger for my wife. My wife was flooded with a rush of emotions. Sadness. Fear. Panic. Along with being bombarded with these feelings, she was also deluged with questions: Was she doing the right thing by trying to work things out with me? Was I really earnest in my recovery? Was I still lying to her? Was my “recovery” just another deception like my affair? Was she being stupid for staying with me? It seemed like so many people were so certain what they would do in her situation, and yet she was filled with doubts. She wished that she could be strong and decisive like they were. And yet, their “apparent certainty” is not based in reality. The truth is until their world is turned upside down and everything they had come to believe about their spouse is being called into question - they have no idea what they will do. They really don’t. Until their world is blown apart, they don’t know how they will respond. Infidelity is a crisis like no other. It is unwise to make life-changing decisions in the midst of a crisis unless you absolutely have to. My wife was advised by wise counsel from AR to wait 12-18 months before she made any decision about whether or not to stay with me. Early on she continued to have many of the same feelings and she did second-guess herself. There were times she felt she couldn’t continue. However, regardless of what she felt, she did choose to wait and see. And as she did, things became self-apparent and her doubts began to disappear. (Of course, her doubts were assuaged only with the evidence of me taking full responsibility for what I had done and evidence of my own recovery). Going through the recovery process over time is the right thing to do. It really is the only way to make an informed decision.