Rebuilding Tips & Advice
Lies and Lying
Save Your Marriage
Break Up and a Broken Heart
About Susie and Otto
Save Your Marriage
"Can trust be rebuilt when I'm doing
all the work?"
By Susie and Otto Collins
Joyce and Rick are trying to save their marriage. After Rick
affair, Joyce immediately took him back. Her attitude has
Rick and their relationship are worth fighting for.
She has been reading books, taking courses and thinking a
how to rebuild trust. Rick has grudgingly made some changes
apologized for cheating and he's given Joyce access to his
main e-mail account.
Unfortunately, these efforts have not been enough.
feels a huge distance between she and Rick. It seems like
trying so hard and he's doing the bare minimum for their
Rick keeps telling Joyce that she's forcing things and he
accuses her of fixating on their problems.
Joyce is becoming more resentful and angry about Rick's
unwillingness to truly do the work necessary to repair their
marriage. "After all," she thinks to herself, "he's the one
Does it seem to you like YOU are the one doing all of the
trying to heal your relationship after infidelity?
If so, you're not alone.
It happens for many couples. For various reasons, there
be an unequal effort to repair the relationship after an
person dives into books about rebuilding trust or takes
workshops and his or her partner chooses not to do these
The perception that your partner is doing little or nothing
can be a
cause of irritation and resentment.
This can be even more
your partner is the one who cheated and you see the affair
main source of your marital troubles.
When you feel like you're the only one putting any real
improving your marriage, this can be yet another wedge that
distance between you and your partner.
But, what can be done?
You might believe that if you don't take the steps to save
marriage, it will fall apart. It could seem as if it's all
you...especially because your mate isn't joining you in this
If you're in a difficult and painful situation like this,
three pieces of advice for you...
Take some time to expand your perception of what's going on
now in your relationship.
As certain as you may be that you
doing all the work and your spouse is doing little or
might be more happening than you are perceiving.
It's easy to become fixed on a particular point of view or
Invite yourself to consider that there could be different
"working on your relationship" than you might have
For example, it could the case that your mate
interested in reading relationship books but he or she has
communicate with you more honestly and openly.
This might not happen all of the time, but it could be
happening...and you're not acknowledging it because it's not
of relationship effort that you are focused upon.
Open your awareness to the unique ways that your partner may
trying to improve your relationship that you could join in
What's really important here is to acknowledge the positive
that you notice-- and to notice them in the first place.
do this, you will most likely experience a lessening of
There could be residual anger about the affair itself or
hurts. If so, allow these feelings. Find ways to release
that you can more fully be in the present moment.
As you do whatever it is that you are doing in an effort to
rebuild trust, be willing to share your
A-HA moments with your mate.
This might be a passage from a book you're reading, it could
insight that came up in your therapy session or it may be a
clarity that came to you as you wrote in your journal.
When you share this information about your healing process,
let your partner know that you are not trying to get him or
therapy, to read the book or write in a journal.
particular quote or insight really resonates with you and
want your partner to know about it too.
Keep in mind that it is the sharing and connecting that is
It is not so much that the insight or words from a book are
profound that your partner HAS to read, hear or believe
the interchange of respectful and open speaking and
can bring the most benefit to you two.
The conversation about whatever you have shared that might
a vital part of the healing process.
There are cases in which one person sets about learning new
strategies and changing old habits while the other person
pretend that the affair never happened and attempts to just
This is not conducive to healing, rebuilding trust or saving
While it's not impossible for a marriage to be restored when
is literally no effort on one person's part to improve the
relationship, it's extremely difficult.
It's up to you to determine what's true for your unique
You need to make that all-important decision about whether
or not it
is in your best interests to stay in this marriage.
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