Steadfast efforts tailored at rebuilding betrayed trust is one of life’s most difficult tasks. Putting back fragments into their original state could prove painstaking over period of time. The aftermath of the discovery of an affair are characterised by anger, despair, shock and confusion among many others. These states have the capability of ruining a family.
The major thing it does is to pull down the wall of TRUST in the home. Trust in a home serves as the foundation on which other aspect is built. Aspects like:
i. Loving your spouse genuinely. This cannot exist without trust.
ii. Risking your life over a life time: Marriage relationship will be void of risk taking when trust is out of the picture. Therefore, the process of rebuilding trust will require the tips enumerated below.
1. Put an end to it: The first step in rebuilding trust is to stop the very act that betrayed the trust. During the process of putting an end to the act, there must be an assurance from the cheating spouse to the hurting spouse. The hurting spouse should be made to believe that such a thing will not repeat itself again. This might seem somewhat difficult to the hurting spouse but the spouse at fault should not give up until there is a bit of positive yielding from the hurting spouse.
There is also the need to cut off from any form of connection or interaction with the illegal lover he/she got involved with.
2. Openness: There is a need to talk openly and sincerely. There will be a lot of questioning and accusations. Lots of suspicion whether the act was deliberate or not. You must be willing to respond to all questions with admittance of wrong doing. In all of these, truth must be told. It will obviously be challenging, but the reality is that it is the right thing to do under the given circumstance.
3. Accept Responsibility: You have to admit and take responsibility for your action despite the fact that you never envisaged from the onset that the act will occur. Also, coupled with the fact that it’s not a rape case, there’s no justification for your action. Increasing the possibilities of your spouse given you a second chance will require that you come out straight, admitting you have made an unwise choice by allowing such a thing to happen.
4. Accountability: You have to make your entire itinerary transparent to your spouse. All your mobile gadgets must be accessible by your spouse if that was not the case until the incidence.
5. Understanding the stages of infidelity: it’s expedient to understand that there are stages in recovering from infidelity act. The recovery does not happen instantly for the families working at experiencing a normal life again. It actually goes through a process before such success happens.
The stages are cited below:
a. Trauma of discovery stage: This stage is usually very volatile. This is the stage where shock, anguish, anger, disappointment, broken trust characterized the response of the spouse being cheated. There are extreme instances where the person cheated either commit suicide or murder the person the spouse got involved with. In some other milder instances, the person cheated withdraw into depression, anger and regrets, asking why he/she made such mistake of marrying such a partner. Others ended up living a different lifestyle as a way of getting back to the spouse involved in infidelity.
It is usually a difficult stage to discover.
b. Relational build up stage: The next stage centers on learning to start communicating again. The initial shock puts a blockage between both parties. What transpires at this stage is more of internal communication with self, analyzing the whole scenario, self-judgement and criticism, posing questions and querying actions internally. Agreeing to responses to this internal analysis and questioning is what determine relational build up or relational breakdown.
c. Trust building stage: This stage involves picking back the pieces that are left from the consequences of the act. Both parties have their respective queries and questioning mounted up in their hearts until the party cheated feels there is a possibility of coming back as a couple. At this stage, the party cheated wants to see the genuineness of his/her spouse to work hard at building the trust again.
d. Repair stage: In order to have the pieces back as a unified whole, both parties must reach a consensus to work together to make the relationship work again. This is the stage where characteristics mentioned in first stage are collectively worked on in order to restore healing and dignity back in the family.
The time frame of total healing for these stages varies from family to family. It usually ranges from six (6) months to two (2) years before complete healing is experienced.
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