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Relationship Health Message Board

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Re: Is This Normal?
Apr 18, 2007
Actually yes her behavior for someone who has been betrayed it very normal. There are even some counselors who are leaning toward Post Tramatic Stress Disorder when an affair is revealed to the betrayed person. It varies greatly from person to person on recovery time. It can be months or even YEARS. He is just going ot have to suck it up and be willing to answer her questions, be understanding of her panic over him not answering phones, and follow her rules. He is the one who did the greatest wrong in the relationship so he needs to show both by words and actions that he is willing and able to gain her trust back. You might want to suggest they read the book After the Affair. It is a very imformative book that can help her reach out to him and give him ways to gain her trust back.
Everything she thought and believed of her marriage was completely turned upside down by his having an affair. She also has taken a huge blow to her self esteem. The trust was thrown out the window along with the rest of their vows. She is turning this stuff over and over in her head. It is one of the hardest things to recover from. I do think counseling would be good for her but going by what he has said she wont go. Maybe if she reads the book she might agree. But it is her choice. She has to get through this her way. People judging her isnt going to help. It maybe hard because you are hearing what the husband has to say and not getting the whole story. Be supportive of your friend but please dont tell him she should be over the affair. She has to heal in her time not on other's time frame.

It is actually quite common for behavior changes. You helped her out when with moving. She was in a very exposed time then. Now she is even more exposed because she took him back. She knows that everyone knows what he did. She probably said some harsh things when they were apart and she might regret that now. It can be hard to be that exposed and then to continue on with those people around. It would be confusing to wonder what they think of her. Such as oh poor thing her husband cheated on her, oh dear she took the jerk back after what he did...are justa few things she must be thinking.
You never know trust can be rebuilt and maybe that is what she is hoping for. Once the hard part is over many couples who make it through affairs have stronger marriages.
It is sad the kids are scared of her. It would be best if she did see someone because like I mentioned earlier some people do suffer from PTS or she could be depressed and that can cause her behvior.
Re: Is This Normal?
Apr 19, 2007
Have to add that I don't really feel much sympathy at all for the husband, he did make his bed. But, it would seem to me that even though you are sick and tired of her behavior and don't want to be around her anymore and you feel more for the husband, you would still be helping HIM out by befriending HER and letting her vent and being an ear to listen to. At the same time, you could gently let her know that she did make the choice to take him back and sooner or later she is going to have to stop punishing him if she ever wants to be happy in her marriage. But sometimes it's relational to how sorry he was. If he wasn't ver sorry and stopped being sorry, then she's going to stay mad until he starts being as sorry as she needs him to be. Dr. Phil always tells husbands trying to mend a marriage after an affair that they must be truly and completely transparent. IF she wants to see all the numbers he has saved in his cell, show her. If she wants to know where he is at any given time of the day or night, let her know. If she wants you to call her three times a day, call her. That's the only way trust can be rebuilt. If he ever, during the initial getting back together phase, if he ever wasn't where he said he was going to be, ever received a cell phone call and didn't tell her immediately who it was and what it was about, if he ever showed anything but pure transparancy, then he set the rebuilding of trust way back. Now it seems he doesn't really care about rebuilding the trust anymore, if he's truly ONLY in the marriage now for the sake of the kids. IF he doesn't care anymore then he may as well leave because he's not doing the kids any favors by keeping them prisoner in an environment where mom is screaming and panicking and flying off the handle all the time and dad just sits there and rolls his eyes and goes and hides. That's no way for kids to live. It'd be much better for them to break up for good and move on with their lives and for the kids to have two parents who live apart but who are not crazy, angry, raving and fed up.

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