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Surviving Affairs and Infidelity

Infidelity Survival Tips...When the Unthinkable Happens in Your Love Relationship
By Susie and Otto Collins

Finding out that your partner has had, or is having, an affair can shock and upset you.

You might have previously believed that your mate was incapable of infidelity or that cheating could not happen in your relationship.

Being faced with the indisputable truth that infidelity has happened can be one of the most difficult challenges you will have to deal with in your life.

There are times when the manner in which the cheating happened can seem unthinkable.

Particular circumstances might have occurred in the course of your partner's affair that go beyond the bounds of your understanding.

Or perhaps the person with whom your mate cheated is also important in your life and so the betrayal is twice as painful.

Soon after the unthinkable infidelity happens in your love relationship or marriage, it is likely that you are taking things one day at a time.

You might feel like you are merely trying to "hold
on" and "survive" at this point.

Patrice can hardly believe that what is going on in her relationship right now is actually happening. Never in her life did she believe that her boyfriend would have an affair with her own adult daughter!

After discovering the infidelity, Patrice has been unable to talk with either her boyfriend or her daughter.

She is staying with her sister in a nearby town for awhile. She feels betrayed and also grief-stricken. It's as if she's lost the two most important people in her life.

Patrice does not know how she will ever be able to heal and go on with her life again. The wounds from the cheating run too deep. She spends most of her time crying or staring blankly at a wall-- in a
state of shock.

Assemble a support system.
If, similar to Patrice, you are trying to deal with an unthinkable set of circumstances surrounding your partner's affair, it is absolutely essential that you be supported.

Now, more than ever, you need to have people and other resources in your life that will help you to move beyond the shock and toward beginning the healing process.

The kind of support you assemble around yourself is important.

There are plenty of online communities for people whose partner's have cheated. And there are even face-to-face groups of this type.  If you feel drawn to a group or community such as this, choose carefully.

Ask yourself if listening to the anger, bitterness and upset of another person who has possibly gone through a similar situation will be helpful to you.

Will it bring you a sense of ease and comfort?

If your answer is "yes," you might want to join this type of conversation.

However, we caution you to not immerse yourself in such an environment-- online or face-to-face. There can certainly be value in learning from others' experiences and even receiving advice from
those who have possibly been in a similar place that you are in.

But if your overall intention is to heal from this unthinkable betrayal and eventually move beyond the pain that you are currently feeling, don't primarily rely on this type of support.

Instead, tap into your spirituality for comfort and guidance. Look to those people in your life who can help you feel improved-- even if it's for a moment at a time.

Read books that offer you a sense of hopefulness in difficult times. Listen to music that soothes you.

Be choosy about the support you assemble for yourself right now.  Stay open to the reality that your needs will likely change and the kind of support you require will also probably change.

Patrice is grateful that her sister has made her home available to her for a few weeks.

Once Patrice's sister learned the details of her current situation and the affair, she did not ask further questions or begin yelling around about Patrice's boyfriend and daughter.

Instead, her sister let her know that she can stay as long as she needs to and also that she is available to listen whenever Patrice needs to talk.

Basically, Patrice's sister has made herself
accessible without pushing and has been a loving presence Patrice feels she can count on.

Nurture and care for yourself.
If you aren't already in the habit of nurturing and caring for yourself, learn how. This might involve treating yourself to a professional massage or time in a steam room.

Or it could simply mean that you soak in a hot tub filled with relaxing bath salts.

Nurturing yourself can also pertain to how you care for your physical body at this time.

When people are in emotional pain, they sometimes begin to eat poorly (or not eat at all) and stop their exercise habits.

Nourishing yourself with healthy foods and taking part in moderate exercise can help point you toward healing and can be a way you give support to yourself.

Tune in to what you are asking of yourself at this time. Listen and try to follow through with your inner calls for special care and attention.

Spend most of your time attending to what you need right now and less time worrying about what happened and why.

If you feel the need later on, you can devote attention to better understanding the situation in the course of making changes and resolving the past.

Right now you need to come out of your shock through nurturing and support and begin to turn toward healing.


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Contact Info
Relationship Coaches Susie and Otto Collins
PO Box 14544, Columbus, OH 43214
Contact Susie or Otto about Relationship Coaching by calling 614-459-8121.
For all other inquiries, contact us by email

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