Adultery isn’t a new concept to any of us, but the illegal hacking onto the Ashley Madison website was an unprecedented crime. The ripple effect of the massive information release has impacted over 37 million families. And it’s taken a huge emotional toll – hate crimes, blackmail, embarrassment, shame, even suicide.
Of course, there are many hidden dangers in acts of betrayal. And to minimize the fallout is totally naive. The result is often personal ruin and devastation of the family.
An affair can be related to many issues – poor moral development, substance abuse, low self-esteem, character flaws. Despite a lot of pain and anguish, some forgive and give their partner a second chance.
Perspective is valuable, whether you’re hit in the face with a crisis or facing ongoing disappointment in your relationship. Expect a cascade of feelings-anxiety, resentment, sadness, fear.
You may have a strong desire to hold on or feel a sense of freedom by letting go. No matter what you decide, begin a process of serious discussions. Be open and honest in your conversations and learn more about active listening and conflict resolution skills.
Can’t do it alone? Consider consulting a marriage therapist or joining a couples’ support group. When you understand more about your differences and individual needs, you’ll know more about the changes you have to make. Decide whether you’re willing to do the hard work and agree to try and solve the problems together.
Transitions are chaotic and it’s normal to feel like you’re on an emotional roller coaster. In order to save your relationship, you may have to change your expectations, redefine what marriage means, and create new mutual goals. But if you have the fortitude to step back and face the situation squarely, you can’t help but grow from the challenges.