Monday, August 06, 2018

Infidelity: Separating or Staying?

Dina is a faithful wife. She has three teenage children and one adult child.

She never looked for another man even if she has lots of opportunities in her sales job.

One day, she thought of checking her husband's iphone. She saw a thread of endearing messages between him and a woman.

She investigated. And she discovered that she's one of her husband's clients in the office.

When Dina confronted her husband, he had no choice but to admit the infidelity. She's deeply hurt and upset. She shouted at him and called him names.

Immediately after discovery day, he became extra nice. But only a few weeks after, Dina found out from their family computer that he never stopped seeing the other woman. He lied.

"Should I separate from him? Will my children suffer if I separate from my unfaithful husband?" asked Dina during session.

Since Dina's situation had complexities, she needed time for deep process during therapy. On the choice to make as well as how to actually go about it.

After one's "best efforts" and the unfaithful spouse remains unremorseful, a healing separation is generally given as an appropriate psychological prescription.

In regard to the children, will they suffer if Dina leaves her husband?

If it's truly the right healing choice, children will only suffer if the parents fight in front of them every day. If they use them as pawns or spies to attack the other parent.

The children suffer too from separation if they're neglected or abused verbally and emotionally. Especially since the parents can't do it directly to themselves.

Ultimately, its Dina's responsibility. Her choice. Her pain. Her life.

This is not a "we" in reference to her children. The children suffer if a parent or both uses them as "crutch."

Dina alone has to be fully responsible for the choices she makes. For herself, her healing, and wholeness. For her marriage and children.