Psychology

Psychological assistance to the victims of infidelity (a guide to confronting the cheater and prevention)

‘Can a relationship survive adultery?’, ‘Should we forgive it or not?’ – these are just some of many questions answered to in the book ‘Infidelity’ (a guide to confronting cheaters and prevention), written by Ana Kandara Šoljaga, PhD. She emphasizes that matrimonial relations are under pressure ‘more than ever before’, together with the ever-growing expectations towards our partners and the marital union.

We expect that our partner be our best friend, somebody to confide in, a person who to understand us, make us feel safe and that we belong together. The partner should also be able to comfort us, arouse us, excite us and surprise us. That list is quite lengthy, and we all put forward these requirements in the most exciting of times when the possibilities of meeting people all over the world are almost endless, and the average lifespan is longer than ever.

From sex to falling in love

According to statistics, in the love lottery, about 60% of men and 40% of women eventually break their marriage vows. Those are the people who step out of their marriage by having a sexual relationship with somebody else, or even fall in love with that person! Even those who claim to be satisfied with their marriage fail to resist the temptation of infidelity at times. In her book Šoljaga tries to answer the most frequent questions regarding the matter and covers a range of topics  from why the infidelity has occurred, how it should be perceived, endured and how to recover from it.
According to a research, only a third of adulterous partners succeed in saving their marriage, but only 3% end their marriage in order to marry the third party. Those rare marriages themselves have unfortunate statistics – 75% end in divorce in the first decade of marriage.

What to do when cheating has occurred?

Whether a marriage will survive infidelity often depends on things occurring after the primary shock. It’s not the mistakes that cause the most harm, but the way that people handle those mistakes, the author of the book ‘Infidelity’ has stressed.  She states that, when caught cheating, it is important to use effective strategies that are bound to succeed and give good results, which will undoubtedly affect the quality of the relationship with your partner in the future. For instance, the strategies that fail are denying responsibility, distorting information, self-deception or an attempt to deceive others, indirect or obscure communication, trying to shift the blame, avoiding the talk on it, promising to change without taking any real actions, acting aggressively, withdrawing into yourself, and seeking support from family and friends.

Ten good strategies

The strategies listed in the book ‘Infidelity’ are fail-safe and they ought to help you. The book also offers psychological assistance to all parties to infidelity: the cheated, the cheater and the third party.
Ten good strategies are accepting responsibility for  the said infidelity (without trying to shift the blame onto the others), understanding personal motivation for cheating, processing emotions rather than suppressing them, seeking out  professional assistance, learning about yourself, infidelity and harmonic relations, showing signs of remorse, communicating directly, nurturing the habit of being honest and transparent, making decisions using common sense, lowering stress levels by doing sports, and seeking support from other people in trying to make amends.

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