One of the worst things that can happen in a relationship is adultery. It is hurtful and humiliating. There is a sense of anger, betrayal and extreme sadness. These feelings can be overwhelming and if they aren’t dealt with correctly the healing process may never happen. Some marriages survive an affair, but some do not. The raw emotions that come up immediately after learning about the affair can make it difficult to make appropriate decisions. Here are some steps to take about your initial reactions and decisions after finding out this has happened to you:
1. Try to calm down and slow the thinking process. You won’t want to make quick decisions or react in a way you may be sorry for later. You are emotionally traumatized and probably are feeling angry and hurt. It will take you some time to calm down and think in a rational way.
2. Calculate your next step. It is probably best to remove yourself from the person and situation. Perhaps one of the parties should leave which will give you space.Having some time to think clearly and be more rational.
3. Seek out an objective person to talk to. A counselor is probably a better choice than seeking out a close friend or family member who is more apt to be hurt and angry too. Speaking with someone in a objective and professional capacity gives you the opportunity to express your feelings and help you to organize your thoughts.
4. Talk to your partner. After you have had time to fully process the situation you will want to talk to your partner.It is smart to lay some ground rules first. The rules may include giving you the opportunity to talk first and to not talk until you have been able to share what you need to. Tell this person how you feel and what you need and want to see happen.
5. Listen to your partner. Find the underlying cause of the affair. Was this a frivolous one time affair? Was it a mid life crisis? Has this been going on for awhile or, is it a one time thing? With this knowledge can the marriage be repaired?
6. Make a conscious and rational decision. After fully evaluating your marriage and your feelings you need to decide how you want to proceed. Salvaging your marriage may mean some counseling for both of you. Trust and forgiveness is needed to salvage the relationship. Both parties have to be on board. There must be a responsible commitment to moving forward.