Where Do I Turn After Discovery?

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How did you have the good fortune to come across Affair Recovery?

I found AR while I scoured the internet for help. Post D-day, I did what I have always done when there is a crisis in my family---research.

To be fair, first I cried.

I cried and cried and cried. I simply could not believe my husband could do such a thing; the person who was one half of the golden couple of our college. One half of the couple all our friends envied. The guy our female friends called such a wonderful husband. "He's so affectionate. He washes dishes! He is so nice to us. He likes all the stuff you like. He's so handsome. He's so funny." Yes—he is. He is also deeply wounded by life.

Perhaps God intervened in a special protective way molding our human nature when he made man from the mud and woman from man's rib. He made us to deny atrocity. We deny the truth when the truth is simply too painful to handle.

During my hours on the computer I found a number of articles about intimate betrayal, a handful of sites that claim to provide help via classes or therapy. I read a book called "My Husband's Affair Became The Best Thing That Ever Happen To Me," by a woman who now runs a very successful business helping the betrayed and unfaithful—the director of the BAN (Beyond Affairs Network) network. I found a site that encouraged more time spent together as a couple, touting it as the answer to reignite/save the relationship. I found John Gottman and his multiple decades of research based in his Seattle 'Love Lab" as he discovered the golden threads that weave successful 'Master' couples together. . . for life.

Thank you Lord, I found Rick Reynolds, Samuel and Affair Recovery. I forged ahead using the free tools offered through First Steps Bootcamp. I was so impressed, not only with the evidence based, concise, compassionate and balanced content, but the giving nature of a company who would offer such powerfully helpful tools without cost. Wow. . . what a blessing in our too-often capitalist society. These folks were living a ministry, welcoming people of all faiths, and no faith.

My husband and I also worked through the wonderful Catholic originated "Retrouvaille" program, saw our own individual counselors and attended marriage counseling. We applied for and received a grant to participate in Affair Recovery's EMS Online. Upon completion, we each participated in our own healing via AR's amazing Harboring Hope for betrayed and Hope for Healing for unfaithful. The wisdom, the genuine truth and raw courage of these group calls are nothing short of inspired. I believe they are a very powerful hope for healing.

We even found a Gottman Institute research program for couple's trying to cope with infidelity. Yes, AR was pivotal in the discovery of that program via sharing a thread on the forum here. I found solace, empathy and support from those brave, giving souls on the forum day in and out. Participants share their deepest pain, their hard fought wisdom, their genuine struggles.

After all, we are wired for connection. We are all in this together—strength. Whether or not your spouse heals, YOU can. Whether or not the unfaithful will ever 'get it.' Whether your marriage makes it or not. You and I have intrinsic worth way bigger than any assault the brokenness of the world can wage. We can heal.

I am six years out from my husband's confession of spending all his retirement money through secret accounts—on people so that they might validate him as a great guy. Financial infidelity. I am three+ years out from my husband's confession of his twenty seven year affair with my brother's ex. To say that my life had not been what I thought it was would be quite an understatement. Real in every way to me, yet controlled to believe it was safe and in the gentle care of a loving faithful spouse.

I'll save thoughts on that for next time. I promise I won't sugar coat anything, but I won't wage retributive war on my unfaithful or any other person who has suffered the brokenness of betrayal.

We are in this together. We are all members of humanity with our frailties, foibles, weaknesses and strengths. For those who come from faith, we are all children of God.

To healing.

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Comments

Thanks Christine, I look

Thanks Christine, I look forward to your words of wisdom and how you navigate your journey. I am a number of steps behind you, 3 1/2 years from partial DDay 1 and 1 1/2 years from the last DDay. I too am a researcher... books/ information is my best friend and my safety net.

Dearest Crystal Charlie,

Dearest Crystal Charlie,
While I have found much soils and wisdom in researching, I have been told by therapists and friends alike not to allow the book learning to disconnect me from my heart. Grieving the many layered losses is so important too and that is something only I can do, new, must do, in order to heal.

Thank you Christine

I feel like I’ve followed close on your heels. I did loads of googling before coming across AR and concur with you that Rick, Samuel and their resources are an absolute Godsend. It was quite a shock to discover the extent of 28 years of infidelity's, addiction and dark secrets that my husband kept. AR have helped us enormously as have BAN, Gottman and books such as The Monogamy Myth by Peggy Vaughan and Not Just Friends by Shirley Glass. We are 3-6 months post Dday, I say 3-6 months because as is common, not all was revealed during the initial opportunity. Nevertheless we are healing well relationally, sadly though, since discovery, my husband has cancer and we place our recovery on hold, I’m doing HH and we’re praying for his physical healing. I look forward to reading more of your posts. Noni

Noniy,

Noniy,
I am so sad to hear of your husband's cancer challenge. I am a three time cancer survivor and it take much energy, physical and emotional to deal with it. I am glad you found AR and that we are here to support each other.
I too am a 27 year of infidelities survivor. It is a tremendous amount to process and grieve. Give yourself grace and kindness as you would a girlfriend suffering the same.
Thank you for sharing some of the names of the books that ave helped you. I too have found reading a marvelous salve. I have a personal blog as well that has a well that has a 'recovery resources' page : https://christinerenewed.home.blog/recovery-resources-2/
Keep on moving forward one day, one article, one workshop, one good cry at a time.

My husband cheated 26 years

Married for 34 years and found out in March 2019 that he cheated for the last 26 years. Three different doctors said I had PTSD and I have been going for EMDR therapy. I am separated after being retired recently and spend more than my social security check every month on treatments that Medicare does not cover. Harboring Hope is helping. It makes me so sad to hear how many of us have been abused so long and now struggle to forgive and move on.

Paulette--I am so sorry you

Paulette--I am so sorry you are experiencing the 'normal' trauma responses from such long term betrayal. So understandable, so heartbreaking. Bravo that you are addressing it--EMDR, Harboring Hope. YEs...the brokenness of our partners and this world is sad. One day at a time we will move forward toward healing. We will!

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