It's About Safety, Not Trust

Watch today's video from Samuel as he discusses what's essential in recovery after an affair and, shockingly for most, it's not trust.

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Safety not Trust

Thank you so much for this post.

Sadly, after doing all I could to continue to work things out with my unfaithful one, it became apparent that he didn't want to do so. A divorce was filed in January, and second-guessing has been in full bloom lately.

Your post reminded me that I am doing the right thing. Not only was he unfaithful, but helped himself to a boatload of money out of our bank account...something I was not to ever look at because he was so 'responsible,' and was highly offended if I asked about our finances. He behaved as if I was questioning his ability. How I wish I'd have seen that big red flag waving wildly and kept an eye on things.

To date he shows no remorse, no empathy, and no interest in talking with me. The longer we're apart, the more I realize that I don't miss him. How sad after 20 years together.

I watch (and read) everything you folks post here. It's been a lifeline for me through this season. The Harboring Hope group I joined was the best thing I ever did.

I'm discovering that going sane feels just like going crazy. Instead of my mind becoming more twisted and disconnected, it's becoming unraveled and clearer. Sure feels like I'm losing my mind sometimes, though.

Thanks again,
Bea Loved

the chaos...

bea loved, you're right: it's chaos and it feels like you're losing your mind. that's unfortunately, what many unfaithful relish in, the feeling that perhaps your crazy. you're seeing things. you're imagining things. you're off. etc. it's called 'gas lighting' your mate. you may want to read that as many unf spouses do that to their mates, either on purpose or even without it being intentional, it's still a way of making your spouse feel like they are crazy and it's incredibly damaging. i'm so sorry, but i'm also so glad you're pursuing your own healing and your own restoration. it's vital for the rest of your life that YOU get the healing you need. i'm sorry for the pain you've felt, but I sure hope hh helps and you continue to find more and more clarity. youre on the right path to healing my friend.

This. So good. I am getting

This. So good. I am getting ready to do EMDR around the issue of trust in my marriage and after watching this I think perhaps I need to refocus a bit onto the issue of safety and take this into our couples counseling and discuss safety there. Thank you so much for defining safety so clearly. I have never been able to clearly articulate what it means and your definition is so concise and perfect.

you're so kind...

christa0107 thank you for your kindness. it would be wise to discuss safety and 'trustworthy actions' even if trust is not there. i'd have your spouse read the shocking truth about trust as well if he hasn't already: it will spell out some things for your spouse and recap what I said in the video as well as other things I didn't have time to say.

It's About Safety

Thank you for clarifying why I am not able to trust my husband - I don't feel safe. My husband has had two physical affairs in the past ten years. Our marriage has also been tainted with my husband's addiction to pornography. All of the suggestions in the video to help the betrayed feel safe have not worked for me...perhaps it is because there seems to be never-ending D-days. The last D-day was six months ago and we have been separated since then. He has never come forward with any information but only "comes clean" after he has been caught. He has never volunteered to give me access to his FB, email or change his phone number - those were all my suggestions which he eventually did two years after his last affair. He doesn't think he needs to put any guard on his phone (how he was viewing porn) because he is "healed" (for the 2nd time) and it isn't an issue anymore. It is about feeling safe and I'm not sure I will ever have safety again.

joy42day....very true...

my friend, with never-ending d days, you just can't heal. i'm so sorry for that, but as long as there is the threat of new info, and then new info, the clock starts over and over and over. it's a painful way to live. i'm so sorry for the pain you're in. it really sucks for sure. you may want to consider the harboring hope course on the site, just to help you heal and give you support from other women who are hurting. you have value my friend. you are not a waste of time. you are a wonderful woman i'm quite sure. to have put up with so much, only to be let down again and again, i know it hurts like hell. harboring hope will help you, but so will many other articles on the site. these articles may also encourage you and provide some perspective for you: if there is anythng I can do, please let me know. I'm very sorry for your hurt and pain.

When should enough be enough?

My UH does all this things you listed Samuel. I have access to his phone and email, he sends me pictures of where he is and we have a tracking app called Life 360. It HAS helped. And 14 months down the line we have more and more good days and feelings of hope as time passes. However, I still get overwhelmed by fear. I still have trouble feeling safe and trusting. I still get triggered. When does this settle? Because as much as he tries, he then gets frustrated at times when he views his efforts as not being enough. He says to me that too much damage has been done and in times of anger he says "your never going to be able to heal from this, we should just quit". This sets me back! I fear then that everything he is doing is just for show, not that 'willingness to do whatever it takes' - at least not for a prolonged period of time. Am I taking too long or is he not really committed? I'd like to add that this wasn't always the case. All 'disclosures' came from my discoveries. Not once did he give information without being found out. And I feel this has hindered our progress. And now that he's again saying - "you know everything now, it's all out and I'm not hiding anything, you have to believe me!" I'm saying - but you said that before... I haven't discovered anything for about 4-6 months now, and it FEELS like it's all out. And he IS doing safe things. But my progress still feels slow to him and that comes up occasionally in bursts of frustration. Am I doing something wrong, or is he expecting too much too soon?

it's too soon

here is a recovery timeline article for more insight:  it's just too early for these incidences to not continue to happen from time to time.  it does appear you both need more specific help.  are you taking any courses at all?   will he do one of our courses on the site?  i think it would help immensely.


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-D, Texas