Affair-Proof Love
  1. The effects of an extramarital affairs are not always destructive. It is very unusual, in fact, for an affair to break up an otherwise healthy relationship. A major factor in determining the impact of an affair is the duration of the marriage and the depth of trust the partners have in each other. Newer marriages are most likely to end because of an affair because the partners have not had time to develop a repertoire of coping mechanisms. Additionally, they have not experienced years of trustworthy behavior to measure this violation against.
  2. It is easy to confuse a comfortable relationship with a happy relationship. Comfort is not a bad thing, but it's also not engaging, dynamic, or intimate. So if your relationship is more comfortable than enticing, consider making it more lively. There has to be growth, or a sense of expansion, within the individuals and between them for a lasting connection to be maintained. Without a connection, couples don't stay together. Often one or the other connects with someone else.
  3. A successful relationship doesn't mean that you're joined at the hip. Being separate is as important as being together. Cultivating interests and relationships apart from one another adds freshness and vitality to a primary relationship.
  4. The odds that a spouse will leave a marriage for an affairee are low. The odds for a successful marriage should the affairees get together are lower.
  5. Couples who have happy, long-term marriages consistently rank these three qualities as the most important assets in their relationship: being best friends, having mutual respect, and sharing common goals and values
  6. It shouldn't come as a big surprise that happy people have happy relationships. It's not the other way around. Relationships do not make anyone happy for very long. A healthy relationship adds to your happiness and fulfills certain needs, but don't look to a relationship or a partner to make you happy. That's up to you.
  7. Paying attention to your partner is one of the most important things you can do to keep your relationship healthy.
  8. It is the day-to-day intimacies, the sharing of small discoveries, the expression of appreciation, or words of love that create strong bonds between partners. If these gestures are not part of your everyday life, then you are putting your relationship at risk.
  9. Pay attention to what your spouse says and does. Even the most off-hand comment can yield a wealth of important information.
  10. What you do and don't do in the first few hours or days after you discover an affair can have a significant impact on the future of your relationship.
  11. Your partner's emotions during the course of an affair will have an effect on your relationship. Be prepared by recognizing where they're coming from and put them into proper perspective.
  12. Twenty percent of both men and women affairees said the confession of their affair made their marriage better. After that there was a big difference in how a man's confession of an affair affected his marriage and how a woman's confession affected hers.
  13. When women confessed, 70 percent said the confession had a negative impact of their marriage, while only 30 percent of men said the same. Most men said their confession had little or no impact on their marriage long term.
  14. When you ask your partner for information, limit it to what concerns the two of you. Ask about his feelings for you, how he feels about himself, and how he feels about his decisions. Keep the focus on the two of you, not on the other affairee and certainly not on the two of them. Getting more information about them will only hurt you, and it is hard to forget even after you forgive. You can always ask for more details about the affair later if it really matters, but you cannot "un-ask."
  15. There's a very good chance that you can restore your relationship to a level of happiness that is as good or better than what you once had.
  16. The innocent trust you once had with each other is gone. It is shattered, and you will never have it again. This loss is one of the reasons an affair is so devastating. It will be a long time until you can just accept what your partner says at face value. When the former affairee says, "I'll be a little late," a chill runs through your whole body and like a shot, your brain sends a warning signal, telling you danger lurks. Overcoming your instincts to protect yourself from the pain you felt when you discovered the affair takes years of patient, unwavering reassurance from your partner.

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