The Healing Library > Articles > Reconciliation the Wrong Way and Reconciliation the Right Way
Reconciliation the Wrong Way and Reconciliation the Right Way
I can only speak in terms of my own life and my own experiences so don't take what I say as the gospel for your own life. I write this with the background of knowledge that my H had numerous affairs throughout the first 18 years of our marriage. I would like to share with you the way things were different after I discovered his first affair from how they were after I discovered his last. (Our marriage is stronger now and I am loved more now than I could ever have dreamed possible!)
After the first one...no counseling. He wouldn't talk about it. He wouldn't answer questions. Made excuses, blamed me, asked for forgiveness said it wouldn't happen again. Showered me with attention for a while. I became a sneaky super sleuth. I would find things or hear things that didn't add up...he would call me paranoid and give me an explanation that I tried my hardest to believe though I knew it couldn't be true.
He would deny and deny until he was trapped...until there was no way out... until the truth had hit him right between the eyes. We had 2 bad counselors who didn't hold him accountable and who saw him a few times then just wanted to treat me for depression and also blame me for the affairs.
I took an attitude of who cares, I can't be a super sleuth any more. So what! What I don't know won't hurt me.
The last revelation came by accident almost 2 years ago. Why are things different now? How do I know they are different? What changes did I make? What changes did he make? Do I trust him now? Will I trust him ever again? How long did all of this take? Did counseling help?
I would now like to try to articulate some of the answers that we have found. We have a wonderful male Christian counselor who met with us the first time at 9PM on a Saturday evening and stayed with us for 5 or 6 hours. Yes it was around 3 AM when we left his office and we were back again on Sunday.
I was so decimated that I couldn't speak above a whisper. Our therapist totally blasted my husband for what he had done to me. He told him that I couldn't defend myself right now so he would. He completely ripped my husband up one side and down the other. My husband was shocked...no more touchy feely therapy like before. It worked wonders.
He was able to totally break my husband down over the next few sessions...we went almost everyday for several hours. He got me to a point where I unleashed my anger directly at my husband. He saw my pain...he saw my shattered heart...he saw my wounded soul for the first time in 18 years.
He cried...he sobbed... he took full responsibility for his actions this time . He didn't try to blame anyone else. His main goal in life now is to do whatever it takes to heal my heart and my soul. For the first time ever, he answers all my questions no matter how painful because he knows that is what I need to heal. He is patient and never gets defensive or tired. He lets me be the guide to my own healing and is willing to follow my lead.
He has fully opened his life up to me with no more secrets or lies. I have full access to all passwords on his cell phone, pager, and computer. This was done at the suggestion of the therapist. I am required to check these things so there is no sneaking on my part. I no longer give to him "blind trust". He gradually has earned trust back with each passing day of fidelity, no lies, open communication, and love.
He shows me love every single day whether it be a small way,such as a note, or bigger ways. I was always the MARTYR of the family before...I would never accept gifts from my H. One year he bought me a $200 robe...I took it back and got a $30 robe on sale for $15. I now am able to accept his gifts and flowers. I must admit I didn't allow this in the beginning of our reconciliation because I didn't want him to think that he could buy me back.
We are very lucky that his job allows him to work out of the house now. He travels from time to time and that was torturous in the beginning but now there is enough trust build up and with the things that he does for me when he is gone, makes it tolerable. We stay in constant contact via email and phone throughout the day.
He has said that Christ gave him a new heart and made all of this possible. I would like to share with you a time line of my own healing though yours may be different. I would also like to share with you the things that I have done to better cope with all of this. I have seen many stories on here at the various stages that I have been through and the various stages that your spouses are in now. If you want reconciliation, don't do what I did in the beginning...do what I did in the end. Don't let your husband continue on like mine did in the beginning. Don't support bad behavior with you silent acceptance.