Fashion Magazine

Month Nine and Ten ... Surviving Marital Betrayal

By Tamera Beardsley @tamerabeardsley

Month Nine and Ten ...  Surviving Marital Betrayal
First offI really dread writing these posts.
Not because we aren't doing better.We are.
But because they are a continual reminderof one of the most painful events in my life.
Which meansthey remind me of my own vulnerability.
But they are also a reminder of how far Jeff and I have come
over the last ten months.
It obviously takes a team effort
to not only survive marital betrayal
but come out stronger for it.
Writing although painful reminds me  how hard
Jeff and I  haveand continue to workto restore strength and vitalityto our marriage.
We will celebrate our 31st anniversary this week
and
 I can't believe how far we have come since last year.
It was only last year celebrating our 30th
that I was wondering if 30 years might be indeed long enough to be married.
And that was before I knew about the betrayal.
Sometimes
awful, ugly things have to happen
before you both realize
just how much you really do love each other.
Marriage is hard.
Being married for a long time can lead as it did in our case
to becoming complacent.
To taking each other for granted.
As horrible as being broken open to the core actually is
sometimes
it can give you an opportunity to put the pieces back togehter
in a way that is so much better than before.
Our road doing that has been long and hard
on both of us.
And in case anyone was wondering
I never publish any of our story
without letting Jeff read it first.
Writing and sharing our story
in the hopes of helping others
definitely comes second to repairing
our own marriage.
I think writing almost seems harder these daysbecausethe betrayal is no longer front and center in my life.More often than notit only comes up briefly each dayand some days not at all.
Which means to have to stop and check in on 'the situation'can sometimes feel like a harsh sting.
But I promised myselfI would journal this process for one year
in the hopes that our journey can help others.
I remember when I first found out about the betrayal
I was so scared and hurt my only question was
'How does anyone survive'
and
I wasn't talking about marriage.
So in hopes of helping someone else
in their time of need
 here goes.
Month Nine and Ten ...  Surviving Marital Betrayal
Our last therapy sessions was one of my favorites.
After being told by our therapist 6 weeks agothat he thought we had made such tremendous progress(as in he had never had a couple as committed to changeandhealingand that inhis opinion  we were good not to continue therapy).
I wasn't comfortable not to returnso we scheduled our last therapy sessionfor a month out.And I am so grateful we did.
During the month that we didn't goJeff and I began to have disagreementsonce a week.
They all started off the same waywere circular and nonproductive in nature.Just an ugly repetitive dance of words and emotions.
I started to realizeI was stuck in anger and resentment of the betrayal.Life had gotten so complicated with other family issueslike my mother dying and it's vast impactto my oldest son choosing once again to estrange himselfand even the joyous marriage of my youngest son and their move to San Diego.It all just left me feeling overwhelmed.
So I think I began to vent at what was an easy target.I began to loose sight of what I wanted our marriage to beand began to settle into true resentment and anger.
The silver linings began to be something I couldn't feel.I knew I need to make a change.
I once again pulled out my books abouthealing after betrayal.I saw that I wasn't doing my part as wellas I had in the beginning.
I could also recognizeJeff was still showing upeven though my angry words could have easily sent a weaker man packing for sure.Who knowsmaybe on some level a part of me was testing him.If I no longer came to our marriage invested every day
in loving intentandshowed up angry and uglywould it all be over.
It wasn't.
Month Nine and Ten ...  Surviving Marital Betrayal
And I was ever so grateful we still had a standing therapy appointment.Because we both definitely needed the help.
Jeff was getting frusteratedand I felt like I was in the process of unraveling so much of the loving progress we were making.
In that sessionI was able to truly verbalize how angry and resentful I wasand talk about my trust issuescalmlyrespectfullyhonestly.
Our therapist suggested Jeff 'check in with me once a dayon how I was feeling about our 'situation'
Month Nine and Ten ...  Surviving Marital Betrayal
And BingoI felt like a light went off in my head.My anger and resentmentwasn't as much about the betrayal itself anymorebut it was more about how I still had to deal withthe ramifications everyday.
The fear that would arise
with the smallest of triggers.
I had falsely believed we had gotten through it ...but I still had to deal with my life
andstill feeling so broken.
I realized the person who was putting the most pressure on meto 'put this all behind us'was me.
I had thought I needed to stop talking about itwhich just made the small triggers build up until they exploded messilyin anger and rage.
Since our session  several  weeks agoJeff checks in dailyin earnest effortand I share with him how I'm feeling that day.
That simple changemakes me realize we are definitely in 'this' togetherand it's not all on my shoulders to get behind me.
We both are able to talk about how regaining trustwill be a processbut we are both committed for the long haul.
Another important take away from our last sessionwasit is my responsibility to knowI will be alright with or without Jeff.
It might sound harsh at first but it's so true.
I need to do all the workthat makes me feel whole
I need that  not only for my own piece of mindbut as much for our marriage.
As the hurt partnerI don't ever want to feel like it's Jeff's entire responsibility to 'make me whole again'.
It is definitely my job as well.
It took two of us to get 'there'It definitely takes the both of usto get where we want to go.
And one thing I do know for surewe are both doing our very best toget there!
Of course there are great days
and
some days that are not so great.
But like so many times in lifeit's continual steps in the right directionthat can get you there.
I know it is still a long road
but I know long journies
are all about one step at a time.
I have also learned never to take relationships for granted.
Especially
the very important ones.
Month Nine and Ten ...  Surviving Marital Betrayal
As always my friends

I wish you love and joy

as you style your life
Here are my other writings on the subject ~
Surviving Marital BetrayalPicking Up the Pieces After Marital BetrayalMarriage Betrayal and Silver LiningsMonth 5Month 6
Month 7 and 8

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