How Infidelity Affects a Marriage
When a spouse surpasses the borders as provided by marriage by cultivating an extra marital relationship, he or she is said to be committing marital infidelity. Marital infidelity has entered the picture of many marriages and has affected them in varying ways. While others experienced temporary effects on the relationship and the people involved, some marriage have ended with wounds that may never completely heal.
Marital infidelity first and foremost affects the couple involved. It will also affect the children, other family members, friends, and work associates. Because it disturbs an accepted legal and moral standard, resulting consequences may be more far-reaching than expected.
Marriage under the claws of infidelity tends to suffer a great deal in terms of the level of trust. Once marital infidelity has been revealed, it would be vey difficult for the cheated spouse not to connect every act and word of the cheating spouse to the discovered betrayal. Infidelity is carried out with a whole lot of lies and deception including one’s location, people to see, and the kind of activity to be done. It is easy to understand why even legitimate activities such as conferences and overtime work become objects of suspicion especially if such reasons were used for previous cheating.
There is nothing more hurting to a person’s self-esteem than to have a cheating spouse. Marital infidelity has a way of attacking a faithful spouse’s value and self-worth which can lead to destructive criticism and reaction. While most would go through a phase of depression, others would retaliate in kind just to prove something. This type of reaction is dangerous because its effects are not only felt by the cheating spouse but more so by the cheated spouse, who opts for an unhealthy form of revenge.
Divorce statistics would show that infidelity is one of the leading reasons for first-time divorces. This would reflect the truth that infidelity affects the marriage to the extent of being able to end what used to be a promising relationship. Not all couples can go through the devastation brought by marital infidelity and remain together after. The sense of betrayal felt by the person on the receiving end of cheating sometimes never goes away. This could only lead to a decision for a permanent separation.
Truly forgiving a spouse guilty of marital infidelity requires strength and a firm belief that there is hope for the marriage after the cheating. The initial effects of the discovery of the occurrence of cheating would include anger, resentment, self-pity, and a piercing ache within that cannot be fully described. It is but natural then for the loss of intimacy to happen within the marriage if it has not been lost yet prior to discovery.
To some couples, infidelity has served to become the turning point to rediscover their marriage. Given no choice but to face the truth that the marriage is in trouble, couples who choose to persevere can build for themselves a stronger marriage. This result comes with the realization that no one else can and should work for the marriage more than the couples themselves.
Marital infidelity is a selfish act that hurts people who matter. Children are especially vulnerable during a situation where infidelity is rocking their parents’ marriage. They inadvertently become pawns for their parents’ deceit and cover-up while witnessing first-hand the horrors of infidelity. By any standard, marital infidelity is not a welcome development to any relationship because it causes pain and untold suffering to those directly affected by it.