Can a Marriage Survive Infidelity Without Counseling?
Even the most harmonious marriages go through difficult periods occasionally. Most such problems tend to be insignificant and can be resolved with a good heart-to-heart talk.
But what if the issue is something more serious, such as infidelity? What if a partner has violated the trust and harmony of the marriage by cheating?
To Seek Counseling For Unfaithful Marriage or Not
For couples that find themselves in this predicament, counseling would seem to be the logical course of action. Counseling with an experienced and trustworthy professional has helped countless married couples deal with infidelity and other serious issues that would normally derail a marriage.
But is counseling the only option? Can a couple deal with infidelity and work their way back into each other’s good graces without the benefit of counseling?
The good news is that many marriages wracked by infidelity have survived and even flourished in the aftermath. Beyond all expectations, some couples have even come out of their ordeal stronger than before. Whether or not this is possible without counseling depends on the couple in question, as well as their circumstances.
Concerns Regarding Marriage Counseling?
Unfortunately, counseling isn’t an option for everyone. Regardless of the benefits, therapy and marriage counseling can be costly and financially out of reach for some couples.
Then there is the shame and embarrassment to consider. One or both partners may be hesitant to air their ‘dirty laundry’ in front of a stranger, regardless of whether or not it could save their marriage. Considering that cheating is akin to admitting that the marriage is falling apart, it is understandable why some couples would be hesitant to seek counseling.
Finally, some people are just too stubborn and resistant to the idea of having someone else help them with a personal problem. Often, the fragile emotional state they are in makes it even more challenging to trust a professional.
Can The Marriage Be Saved Without Counseling
What are the options for couples that have to face an infidelity problem without counseling? Is there hope that the marriage will ever go back to the way it was? Here are some steps that may help heal the wounds and lay the groundwork for relationship recovery:
The Infidelity Has to Stop.
This is unconditional and non-negotiable. Before the healing can begin, you will have to remove the factor that caused the problem in the first place. You cannot go forward without acknowledging that the cheating took place and making a commitment to end it. And there is more than just 1 type of infidelity to quit.
Mutual Purpose Will Have to be Established.
At some point, you and your partner will have to come together and agree to work on the problem. Consider it a pact in which you reaffirm your decision to stick with each other until the issue is resolved.
Establish a Policy of Total Honesty.
You will both have to be honest with each other from this point moving forward. Whether you or your partner was at fault, you will have to lay the groundwork for a more open and honest relationship in which both partners have an equal say.
Work on Rebuilding Trust.
Trust goes hand-in-hand with honesty. If you believe in each other enough to be honest, you can start to work on re-establishing trust. Initially, this could mean the offending partner’s willingness to be subjected to phone and email checks. Ultimately, the goal would be to make such checks unnecessary.
Deal with Underlying Relationship Problems.
Go back to why the cheating occurred in the first place. In most cases, infidelity is caused by underlying issues or unresolved problems in the marriage. You will have to deal with these issues head-on and work to find a mutually-agreeable solution. This will ensure that the problem doesn’t reoccur so you can put the past behind you.
Commit to a New Path.
Finally, reaffirm your commitment to a new relationship. In some cases, it might be best to forget about the old marriage and to work with the premise that this is a brand new marriage and a brand new relationship with brand new rules. Going forward with a fresh outlook could help you navigate the initial rocky steps of the healing process.
When infidelity occurs in a marriage, counseling is almost always the best course of action. But if counseling is not available or both partners would prefer not to go through it, it may still be possible to save the marriage.