Recently a colleague of mine sent me a text that said, “I just found out my husband had a six-month affair. Someone else shared this news. I could not even figure it out for myself and I didn’t see it coming at all. I thought we had a good marriage. I thought we were happy. I would never have dreamed that he would be unfaithful to me. I feel so numb. I feel vulnerable. I am blindsided, and I don’t know to go from here.”
This text, though tragic, isn’t all that unique, sadly. We always read such stories which are relatively common.
The wives almost always accuse themselves, though none of this is their mistake. They can’t and shouldn’t take the blame for actions that their husbands took. Only a fraction of women whose husbands have affairs see this coming. Many men with utterly happy marriages who have perfectly attentive, wonderful and desirable wives are unfaithful at some point in their marriage days. This does not need to change how you feel about yourself and your perceived ability to see the situation’s truth.
I know that this is a profoundly painful situation that can feel like there is no end in sight. But I can tell you from experience and observation that you can move past this. It’s often intriguing to focus on the fact that you were blindsided rather than on where you’re going to go from here. This is an avoidable blunder that I will discuss more.
It is not your fault if you were blindsided.
It’s sporadic to see a wife who anticipated or expected an affair. This is an exception rather than a rule. Most of the women who got cheated on didn’t saw it coming. They are always shocked but please note, that this is not your fault. Almost no one goes into a marriage expecting their partner to cheat on them. Moreover, your thought process didn’t consider cheating because this is not an activity that you yourself would take. If you approach your marriage with suspicion, skepticism and doubt, you would sabotage it and not be completely invested. So, there is no need to blame yourself now.
And, husbands who cheat obviously don’t want you to know that they are cheating. They hide their tracks very well. They assume that everything is fine. They go out of their way to act naturally or even better than usual. And, whether you buy this or not, many husbands very seriously insist that their love for their wife never ever changed. This is often why you can feel that you were thrilled and in love. You were. His mistake does not mean that you were any less good. I’m sure that intellectually, you know this. (Look at all the beautiful actresses whose husbands have cheated with women who did not even compare to their wives.) The difficult part is accepting what you know intellectually.
Where You Go From Here?
It’s very easy to obsess over how weak you were for not seeing this coming. But this is a case to nowhere. All it does is make you blame yourself, ensure that you stay grounded, and contribute to your continuing to be miserable. Sometimes, this will get old enough that you will snap out of it on your own. Other times, you will have to push yourself to focus on other things and to move forward. No matter how it happens, if you want to get your life back and revert to a healthy place, you will need to shift your focus from the past to the future.
You’ll generally know that you’re reaching this point when you’ll begin to become annoyed and angry with the same old feelings and thoughts. Often, you will want to improve, but you aren’t sure how. The thing is, you can’t change what has happened in the past. As broken as that is, it is a fact now. But you do have control over your future. It can be a fresh slate onto which you can draw exactly what you want.
It would help if you didn’t continue to beat yourself up over your husband’s actions. You can’t control what someone else does. What you can control are your own actions. And you can feed yourself positive affirmations and loving self-care that will eventually influence your thoughts. This is a slow process, and I won’t tell you that it will always be easy because it won’t. There will be some dark days. But, if you can gradually keep moving forward, always move toward what you know to be your in best interests, and practice extreme self-care, you should slowly begin to feel at least some improvement.
You have to ask yourself what you want. Most people will answer this question with some variation of “I want my life back. I want to be happy again.” Sadly, most of us don’t realize that beating ourselves up and focusing on where we went wrong doesn’t do anything to help us with our goals of being healthy and happy again. Yes, it pains to be taken by shock in this way. But you can’t change that aspect of it.
What’s important is that you heal from this and are eventually able to overcome it – and I assure you, with time you will.