The Detox Phase When launching out into recovery, one must have an anchor. The chaos and the confusion of it all can be overwhelming and exasperating. Not all days are tumultuous, but early on I’m willing to bet you’ll have more chaotic and depressing days, than comforting and reassuring days. Even now, several years later, I have a few rock solid anchors in my life to help keep me attached, grounded and safe for all the important relationships in my life.What anchors do you have in your life? Are there any right now?If you're early on in recovery, unfortunately your affair partner or addiction may have been your anchor. It's what kept you sane, and kept you from imploding on your spouse, family or difficulty in life.My affair partner in many ways was an anchor. The problem was, it was a false anchor that could never ultimately give what I needed, as our dysfunction played off of one another, and the affair proved to be a false sense of hope and security. Like many of you, or your spouse, what was once an anchor is now a temptation to resist and remain free from. This will probably require a detox phase. The detox phase is incredibly painful for both the unfaithful spouse and betrayed spouse, as the betrayed spouse knows the unfaithful spouse is going through such a bewildering period of time. It hurts like all hell to be honest. To know your spouse misses someone intensely, who really should never have been in their lives in the first place is about as gut wrenching as one can imagine. To know you’re compared to another, and don’t measure up to their fantasy, ministers so much rejection, insecurity and hopelessness, it’s hard to put into words. Looking back now, I see that the comparisons were unfair, unrealistic and based upon self-deception more than they were based upon real life truth. As I’ve said time and time again, real life can just never compete with fantasy. And affairs my friends, are based upon fantasy life and not real, true, everyday life with problems, bills, pressures, confusions and unmet needs. The detox phase is a must. Like breaking free from a drug, it is absolutely essential. If done right, and if pushed through strategically, it can help pave the way to the next season of reconnection with your spouse. As a drug addict needs to be free from a drug, many times a spouse needs to be free from the affair partner and it will take more than just “time” to see this happen. It will take time, plus expertise to help translate what is real and what is fantasy and it will also take a consistent curriculum to help prevent relapse. If your spouse has been involved in an affair for any length of time with the same person, almost assuredly there will be a detox phase. Though excruciating for both parties, it is a must if there is going to be healing and eventual reconciliation.