Betrayal is one of the biggest reasons for marital problems. In many cases, it spells the end of the marriage. However, an article in Psychology Today explains that it is possible for a marriage to live beyond a betrayal, provided both spouses accept what happened and are willing to work together to save their marriage.
What Betrayal Looks Like
When it comes to marriage, the term betrayal seems to by synonymous with adultery. According to the article, men and women tend to respond to this type of betrayal differently. A man who has been cheated on may initially blame the other man for taking advantage of his wife. Only later will he come to realize that the wife made the decision to cheat. A woman who has been cheated on may initially blame herself for not being attractive enough to keep her husband from cheating. Even though she may consciously realize that this was not her fault, she may still hold on to these feelings.
Betrayal comes in other forms beyond adultery. It may come in the form of an addict falling back into harmful old behavior patterns after promising a spouse not to. It may come in the form of a financial deceit or another issue as well.
Why Betrayal Happens
The article explains that a person’s needs change over time. What a husband or wife needed at the beginning of a marriage may change after five years, 10 years, 20 years or more. This is natural. If a couple were to be open and discuss such changes, betrayals might be prevented. Unfortunately, most people find it difficult to discuss changing needs for fear of upsetting their spouse, so they keep them secret and may ultimately act on their new needs outside of their marriage.
Moving Past The Betrayal
In the article, the author states that couples can move past betrayals. The betrayer needs to admit to the betrayal. The betrayed needs to recognize the pain and be willing to move forward. They both need to have a commitment to overcoming it by being open, honest and setting clear guidelines for their marriage.
In some situations, overcoming a betrayal may not be possible. Perhaps there has been one betrayal too many. Perhaps an attempt has been made to move forward. After assessing the situation, the time may be right for a divorce. Before taking this step, a consultation with an experienced divorce attorney is appropriate.
At Scardina Family Law, we can answer your questions about the divorce process and provide you the information you need to decide if it is the right step for you. If it is, we can guide you forward with care and consideration.