We both matter, don't we

Why?: This is the first question the injured partner usually asks. "Why would you do this to me?" Often the answer is "it just happened." This is of course not true. No one accidentally bakes a cake or builds a house. Relationships, and that's what an affair is, don't happen by accident. This doesn't mean that the unfaithful partner thought about the consequences. Scientists have discovered that in order to maximize the genetic diversity of offspring Humans are genetically predisposed to desire a variety of sexual partners. This is especially true, but not exclusively true in males. Women are taught to compete for good looking agressive males as viable partners. There are only so many of them and competition is often vicious. The world we live in today is saturated with sexual imagery and fierce competition. All that doesn't help someone survive infidelity but it does put the subject in perspective. Infidelity happens even in countries where the penalty is death. The first step is to understand that it isn't your fault that your partner was unfaithful.

Dealling with the pain: Anger and heartbreak are the most natural emotions to experience at this time. People have every right to feel that way. This is important:Don't do anything foolish. crimes of passion may sell newspapers but the results are usually tragic. More importantly this is about doing something positive for you and not 'revenge'. It may seem perfectly reasonable to "go out and return the favor" but that's not what you got into this relationship to do. This is where the decision must be made whether or not to continue the relationship. Unless the relationship is abusive the answer may be yes. The only way to get through the initial pain is to do something good for yourself as a reminder of the inherent value of every human life. It is not unsusual for the injured party to feel de-valued. Positive action helps alot both in the short and long term.

Forgiveness: Forgiving the unfaithful partner has nothing to do with that person and everything to do with emotional good health. It isn't healthy to carry around the negative emotions of anger and heartache. Remember, this is about positive action not giving the offender a 'free pass'. Infidelity effects not only home but work as well. Most people don't separate their work and home lives because one natually effects the other. Regardless of what Corperations tell us to do, one aspect of life will effect the other,to think otherwise is irrational. The choice is either to remain 'at the effect' of another person's actions or to make happiness once again possible by forgiving that person. When was the last time you wanted to get to know an angry person? Forgiveness allows a person to be themselves.

Trust: It would have been nice to say that it is possible for trust to be re-established within the relationship. The unfaithful partner will need to do everything in their power to regain the trust of the injured party. The fact is however that it is unlikely this can ever be regained. Emotional damage is often far more traumatic than physical damage. The unfaithful partner has no right to expect to be trusted at some time in the future. Trust is established by past action that has aquired a certain degree of predictability. Once a person's actions have been shown to be unpredictable it may very well take a life-time to renew trust in the relationship. The door should however be left open for that eventuality. Things that are impossible today may be possible in the future.

Moving forward: This is where positive action becomes critical. There is a choice to be made here. The choice is to stay buried in the rubble of the past or to start building a brighter future. It might not even seem possible at the moment to contemplate a brighter future but it is out there waiting to be built. Do something positive for yourself every day until you believe that a brighter future can be built. At first it will be like trying to walk on a broken leg but you have to keep at it. A person will still have days when they want to 'shut down' but keep trying. Learn to be your own Best friend. Loving oneself is the most positive action a person can take and quite possibly the last thing an unfaithful mate will expect.  "Living well is the best revenge".

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