Are They Justifying the Affair?

Samuel discusses the mind of the unfaithful and how justification has to play a part in understanding why spouses cheat.

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Thanks again so much for the content and the way you can deliver the message! This blog actual helped my family ( betrayed spouse and family) look at why my husband acted so horribly after the affair was discovered. His behavior after was worse than the affair in my mind. It was all justification!!! He is in the HH class after EMS and exactly how you said it- he was able to turn the lamp back on and is trying to build the bridge back to our family. S&*#t happens in life and mistakes are made; it truly is what you do after that shows your true self. Thank you again!


My husband takes "responsibility" for his actual actions, by saying what I did was wrong and if I could go back and change it I would. I have asked him what he said to himself that allowed him to justify his behavior...what was his internal dialog that allowed him to think that this behavior was okay. He claims he does not know. When I question him about how the affairs happened he says things like~I felt rejected by you, You made me feel like I was not important, there was just a sexual attraction and I could not resist.... which to me seems as though he is turning it back on me, and the next time there is a sexual attraction I am just going to get hurt again. I rejected him so that made this okay? SO now I can NEVER reject him? I made him feel unimportant so it was okay to find someone that made him feel important? SO now I have to make sure he feels or knows his importance in my life constantly? I am EXHAUSTED. He conveniently forgets all the things that where happening in my life during that time.
So I guess my question is HOW did you see the justification tools that you used? Do you think that someone has to see what they used as justification to make sure it does not happen again? And once you reached that level of knowledge and shared it with Samantha how did Samantha feel? Better? Worse? Did it assist her healing?

all very good questions SLM

those are tough, but good questions. they strike at some deep places, so i'm not sure there's enough room on the site for all the thoughts I'd have. hahahahah. But I'll do my best to share what I think is important for you. Samantha absolutely owned the fact that she 'mommed' me and treated me like a 4th kid. she owned the fact that she did reject me sexually and did make me feel like a failure when outside the home i was extremely successful....however, being successful to me, now means being a success at home first and foremost. all else flows from there. yet, i did use that as a justification, however it was true she did reject me. so, to be honest, though i was rejected, it was not a reasonable excuse for doing what i did. i'm still to blame. i'm still at fault. i'm still the one who blew it. but there is simple context to understand that i USED it as a justification which is WRONG....however she admitted to it with Rick and I in a meeting and she owned it and was able to humbly apologize for that and own that that was a dysfunction in our marriage. she shouldn't do that (reject me). she should strive to never do that. i don't use it now to go out and have an affair or any of that, but when she occasionally blows it and makes a mistake she sees how it affects me and can wound me a bit. again, it's context. it's the road of understanding how we arrived at where we arrived at in life and in marriage. i was wrong to use it as a justification. she was wrong to do it. i was wrong to cheat and i'm at fault. but she had to own where she was unkind too if we were going to heal and move forward. if you're looking for him to explain his self diagnosis of why, then i think he's doing well to share his feelings, but not to use them as justification but more of an understanding of what was going on in his mind and emotions. samantha wanted to heal. she wasn't sure if i was worth pursuing again, so she took the wait and see approach to my recovery. however, as i was getting healthy and as i was looking to do recovery work and own what i did, she would then own what she was at fault for: NOT for why i cheated, but for what she had done in the marriage to wound me. i cheated because i was wrong and selfish and short sighted and tried to fill legitimate needs in an illegitimate way. i'll never be able to make a case that it was ok for me to do what I did. but, looking back, samantha is able to see where there were vulnerabilities in our marriage. it's just fact. it's truth. not a justification of my affair at all. she would say the same things and has for sure. so it helped her healing and it helped mine for us to in a very controlled and safe way (with ricks help) to sift through the wreckage and understand how all this happened and how we ended up where we ended up maritally. ultimately samantha felt better coming to an understanding of what was going on in my mind, but also had some tough times. it gets muddy SLM....i am never going to be justified in cheating....h o w e v e r she had to own the fact that she was unloving and disconnected from me in many ways and that hurts. but how do you own that in the midst of a cheating, selfish, no good spouse like's hard and where the right help comes in very handy. does this make sense? happy to continue the dialogue with you.

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