When I’m Sorry Isn’t Enough: How to Embrace the Consequences of Our Infidelity

Every safe and healthy formerly unfaithful spouse eventually comes to the realization that mere "I'm sorries" just aren't enough. Restoration takes time, gut-wrenching effort, and expert help. Without any of those variables, the repair process can seem absolutely impossible. The good news is, there is a way to heal and survive cheating of any kind in a relationship, where both parties are committed to the process. It's a tough conversation when the unfaithful spouse is told they must embrace their consequences if they are going to have any future with their betrayed spouse. Questions like "should I forgive a cheater?" and "can I survive this awful cheating" can be answered when an unfaithful spouse is willing to embrace their consequences and be safe for the betrayed spouse's anger and pain.

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"I just completed the Harboring Hope program. My husband was unfaithful to me emotionally, physically and sexually with a co-worker. What I wished I would've known is that forgiveness and reconciliation are two different things. People who refuse to forgive can never live their own lives, they are too busy obsessing about the life of the one who hurt them. They are stuck. They are unable to enjoy friends, family or even their children. They imprison themselves in a bondage of their own making. I definitely recommend the Harboring Hope program as a support for healing. To be in a safe community with other women who know what you're going through and how you're feeling is comforting. Whether you're able to reconcile or not, there is hope." — M., Michigan | HH Participant, April 2021.

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This video is powerful as

This video is powerful as many of them are. But there is a particular and unexpected gem in here that deserves close attention. Really it's quite life-changing, I think. It may deserve a blog of its own. My husband and both of my daughters have struggled with anxiety disorders all their lives, up to and including fainting and even seizures. My husband found some peace almost 30 years ago when he checked himself in to a Minerith-Mieir Clinic for a month of in-patient Christian-based psychiatric treatment. Dr. Meier was my husband's doctor. In his anxiety, my husband was always asking "what if..." questions. For example, he would ruminate over "what if this happens or what if that happens?". Dr. Meier challenged him one time by responding, "What if it doesn't happen?". That line of thinking brought my husband a lot of relief. That, along with some stout medication!

Now fast forward almost 28 years to when I started having anxiety and panic attacks following the two D-days of my husband's unfaithfulness. The second one was May of 2019. We did not discover Affair Recovery until well into 2021. We had a Christian marriage counselor for those two years but she was not trained in infidelity. So we were basically trying to keep our heads above water in a rolling sea of insecurity, guilt, shame, blame, doubt, despair and even suicidal ideations. We found a light house when we found Affair Recovery. It was one of Samuel's videos that I found on You tube.

I had always had an internal conviction that my husband should be doing more to help heal the marriage and helping me process my hurt. But he wrapped himself up in his own protective bubble, gave up his porn habit (the EA with the girl his youngest daughter's age had ended nine months before I ever knew about it), parked himself in front of the t.v. and "waited for me to heal". He was much more concerned about his own pain - which was really just shame - than he was about mine. But on occasion, he would try to reach out and comfort me with those words that Dr. Meier had spoken to him those many years ago. I was in terror that the earth was going to give way beneath me again with a relapse or new information or just that his bent towards unfaithfulness would rear its ugly head sometime in the future. He wanted to live in the present day and I was worried about tomorrow. Those words of Dr. Meier's never comforted me the way they did him. To me, there was no logic to it. I wasn't worried about 'what if such and such doesn't happen". I was worried about the blinding reality that I was not guaranteed a secure future with this man to whom I was married.

Now fast forward to today and this video. And my reason for this lengthy comment. Samuel said, in essence, change your "what if..." question into an "even if..." statement. Let me say that again, in case you didn't catch it. Change your "what if..." question into an "even if..." statement. Hello, EMPOWERMENT! Suddenly the puzzle piece clicked. I am not a victim of my husband's fickle ways. I have a choice. And I have a way to take that anxious thought and process it into a PLAN OF ACTION. Suddenly, it doesn't get to consume my energy anymore because it isn't a dangling uncertainty. Now I take that worrisome thought and attach a logical response and then I can breathe. I can breathe!

Thank you, Samuel, for this amazing new insight. It was just the right words at just the right time. And, as much as I respect Dr. Meier, you blew him out of the water today, in my opinion! :) Thank you!

so kind of you

i can't thank you enough for your kind words of support and encouragement.  thank you so much for taking time to watch the video and leave such a wonderful comment.  it means more than you know.  

Absolutely. Keep doing what

Absolutely. Keep doing what you are doing. Ride out the storm. What you do makes a difference. A major difference! Blessings