Friday, June 08, 2007
Maybe Next Time He'll Think Before He Cheats.....
I am sure you have heard the Carrie Underwood song of the same name by
now. Most of us who have been cheated on have probably fantasized about keying our ex's car or inflicting some of the damage Carrie sings about in her hit song. As difficult as it may be, you must control your emotions.
The type of out of control behavior depicted in the song will only end you up in jail with a retraining order issued against you.
So what can we do to move through the pain and anguish of being betrayed by our spouse? Do spouses who cheat care? Do they harden themselves so that they can ignore the pain they’re causing? If they could feel the actual pain they are causing would it change them? Would they care then?
Most of us who have been the victims of adultery have been forced to ponder these questions. We look at spouses who we lovingly trusted, people with whom we’ve had children, and we see them walking away, blind to the tears, and deaf to the sobs of others. It is as if they have found a way to separate themselves from all that led up to now, and cut themselves off from the past.
As we ponder, we ask why? A woman asks: Was I not good enough? A man might ask: Was I not caring enough? Either might want to know: Did I keep up my end? Was I supportive enough? We blame ourselves, and examine every small detail. Like detectives we search for clues, leads, and turning points. We ask the questions of a spouse who is no longer there, and in the end we are left right back where we started: Why? Why would
There are no easy answers, but there are guilty feelings that can and should be dealt with. First, remember: you did nothing to make your spouse stray. This was their choice, freely made. There is always a moment (or moments) when a responsible person can say: No. The responsibility is theirs, and for those of us they abandoned the question is not: Why did my marriage break up? Instead we begin with: Did a perfectly loyal, loving spouse really suddenly turn into a cheater? It’s likely that the answer is: No. Which leads us to the question: Are there signs that we ignored?
I searched my soul, and my memory, and found that the answer was: Yes. The indications were there, and I ignored them. I had evidence that my husband was not the wonderful, trusting man I had made him out to be. I put on my rose-colored glasses, and saw him only through those lenses, filtering out anything that might threaten my family and me.
After the marriage is over, it’s often a good idea to look back and learn. This shouldn't be the kind of thinking that only leads to you torturing yourself. If you’re still at that stage, don’t dwell on the past. Only do this when you are far enough past the shock and the wreckage that you can think of it as an object lesson, and want to avoid the same traps next time.