Forgiving yourself after an affair

This audio seminar is discussing “Forgiving Yourself.”

May 25, 2010 – Forgiving yourself after an affair This call will mostly be focused towards; how we as betrayed spouses might forgive ourselves. Do we even need to forgive ourselves? After all we didn’t have the affair! Some betrayed spouses tell me they have a hard time forgiving themselves for not really confronting issues sooner.

As betrayed spouses, we shouldn’t need to forgive ourselves. After all, we didn’t have an affair. The first thing is to discern the difference between when we really need to forgive ourselves, and when we are taking responsibility for something that we are not responsible for.

It overlaps with boundaries. Imagine that we all have our own front yard and backyard around our lives. This is the part of life that we are responsible for. The problem is that other people have a tendency to throw their garbage into our yards, but it doesn’t belong in our yard, it belongs in their yard. So how do we give it back to the person to whom the problem belongs?

In our society today, we tend to blame ourselves for our spouses affairs. Sadly our friends, family, therapist and pastor may be blaming us too.

At Passionate Life Seminars, we disagree with the premise that when someone goes outside the marriage and has an affair, that it must be because the faithful spouse at home wasn’t meeting the unfaithful spouse’s needs. We believe that affairs have more to do with the person having the affair, than the person at home who is not having an affair.

For every marriage with problems where there has been an affair, I can point to other marriages with equal or less problems where there has not been an affair. So it is not a cause and effect thing.

The people who come to us are good people who meant their wedding vows when they said them, and somehow, one day ended up crossing boundaries that they once thought they never could.

Affairs always come with lies and deception. I’ve never spoken with anyone who didn’t believe that lying to and deceiving your spouse was okay.

In order for the unfaithful to give themselves permission to have an affair, they begin to rewrite their marital history. They exaggerate (in their minds) any problems in the marriage, and they minimize (in their minds) the good things in the relationship. Then they begin to say to themselves, I deserve to be happy, and slowly they justify to themselves their affair behavior.

So I want to say to every betrayed spouse that you are not responsible for your spouses choice to have an affair.

This is just the beginning of this audio seminar. To hear this seminar in its fullness just click on the link above.