Affair healing Blog
With Disney's film release of the musical, Hamilton, I've finally been able to understand the obsession of those who witnessed the theater production. It's an amazing creation that stirred many emotions while I watched and listened to this creative telling of Alexander Hamilton's life and the birth of a nation.
One song, in particular, produced a flow of tears. It's Quiet Uptown follows two tragic events in the story: Hamilton's public humiliation over his confessed affair and the death of his son. These cause an estrangement between Alexander and his wife, Eliza. But they choose to do the unimaginable: find their way back together again.
Following an affair, the recovery of the marriage is not the only option. But partners who decide to heal together will take different steps toward that goal.
The vertical pairing of the steps listed below depicts how partners are connected to each other’s experiences and actions. Discovery should be met with disclosure. One partner’s trauma should lead to the other’s remorse which, in turn, can shorten the traumatic ordeal. Empathy should be offered to pain. Honesty needs to be met with acceptance. Atonement encourages forgiveness, and both partners must take the vulnerable risks necessary to reestablish trust.
If either partner fails to take the necessary steps, the journey stops. If they remain stuck, then complete relationship healing cannot occur.
Having already reviewed the steps of the Involved Partner, let's consider what steps the Injured Partner must take if a couple chooses to heal their marriage...
"I'm ready to give up this hurt..."
A few nights ago, I came across another documentary that relates to affair healing issues. In her self-filmed documentary, A Way to Forgiveness, Erin takes a 550-mile pilgrimage across northern Spain in an attempt to find healing from the hurt of her impending divorce.
Here's what she says in the beginning of the film as she prepares for the trip: "I'm ready to stop crying every day. I'm ready to not collapse as I walk through the house. I just fall to the ground and sob from the pain. I'm ready to give up this hurt. I'm ready to, hopefully, find find a way to forgive the person who I trusted the most and ended up betraying me. I'm ready to pack my bags and just walk. I'm ready."
These six predictors are not guarantees. They are indicators that tend to be present in couples who, on the other side of infidelity, rediscover a satisfying and intimate relationship with each other. How many are present in your marriage?
This is an edited copy of the letter one woman wrote to her husband after her affair. It is used with her permission. The entire letter is included as an extra resource in the Understanding WHY course.
If you had told me seven months ago that I would be writing this letter, I might not have believed it—not because I am not profoundly sorry and regretful for my actions in the past, but because I never believed I could survive telling the truth, that you would survive hearing it, that we could survive its aftermath, or that you would even be willing to offer me the chance.
Unless otherwise noted, articles are written by Tim Tedder, a licensed counselor and creator of this site and its resources.