Working Through Infidelity In A Relationship

Affair Recovery

Recovering from an affair is a healing process that encompasses all aspects of an individual by themselves as well as part of a union. Infidelity can be devastating for all involved, but it does not necessarily mean an end to the marriage. Entering into couples therapy after an affair is simply committing to the process – agreeing to try to repair the relationship and move forward as a stronger, more unified team.


Types of Infidelity:

There are many different perspectives on what constitutes an extramarital affair. This varies amongst couples because it is based on their own beliefs and values. 

With that being said, below are a list of potential types of affairs that couples experience:

This type of affair occurs when an individual connects with someone through an online platform, engaging in conversation and crossing boundaries with the content that is shared. 

This type of affair occurs when one partner becomes emotionally connected to another individual outside of the relationship. This other individual is usually of the gender to whom the individual is attracted. One may spend an exorbitant amount of time communicating with this other individual and sharing deep emotional experiences, inside jokes and personal thoughts and feelings. By sharing this more intimate information with someone outside of the marriage instead of their own partner, an individual becomes disconnected from their relationship. 

Finances can be a point of tension in some marriages, with conflict stemming from resentment over who makes more, who spends more, and how to adequately save. Financial affairs occur when an individual begins to turn deceitful towards their partner – hiding from them how much money is earned, how that money is earned, the amount of debt they may owe, and how money is spent. Some individuals may even hide money in hopes of keeping it a secret from their partner. 

A physical affair is one in which there is sexual relations or intercourse outside of the marriage. It does not necessarily entail a deep emotional attachment. 

Microcheating occurs when there is no intention of straying outside of the relationship, but the individual continues to participate in behaviors that their partner finds irritating, such as being flirtatious towards others of the opposite sex. 

Object affair is one in which an individual is pursuing an outside interest that negatively impacts the time, attention and consideration given to the relationship itself.  The preoccupation tends to present as more of an obsession rather than simply a hobby or interest. 

These types of affairs can include but are not limited to, phone usage, fixation on work, involvement with sports teams or social groups.

Why Affairs May Happen..

Many factors contribute to affairs and each relationship is unique. However, these are some common behaviors that occur that slowly begin to wear down the foundation of the marriage:
  • Turning away

  • Negativity and avoidance

  • Investing less and comparing more

  •  Resentment and loneliness

  • Idealizing alternative relationships

  • Secrets and crossing boundaries

  • Feeling less dependent / making fewer sacrifices


Through couples counseling, individuals can learn how to better process the trauma, examine behaviors and incidents that led to the affair, and address the root cause of the problem in order to move forward with clarity and peace