How Couples Therapy Helped Me To Get Over My 5 Extra Marital Affairs & Made Me The Man My Family Deserves
I am no longer ashamed to own up to my mistakes, regrets, and the truth that my wife and I had to take couples therapy to resolve the brunt of having extramarital affairs and rebuild our relationship on honesty, open communication, and trust.
Most couples opt for couples therapy as a last resort to save their relationship. For us, it was the same too. Either couples therapy would work or we would file a divorce. We decided to give our marriage one last chance and go to couples therapy.
It was a humbling and life-changing experience. Couples therapy revealed so many buried emotions, feelings, and events that we had overlooked and denied despite them having such a big impact on us.
It helped us to navigate through these events and open lines of honest communication, work on our inner-self, boost our personal growth, and helped us understand how to rebuild our marriage and resolve conflicts in healthy ways.
Relationships and marriage take a lot of work and effort. Falling in love can feel easy and effortless but staying in love and taking equal responsibility involves compromises, adjustments, emotional maturity, and a lot more forgiveness.
I lacked the emotional maturity and the ability, to be honest about my feelings. When my wife and I had our second child, the dynamics of our marriage shifted completely. I would come home to a messy house, a tired wife, and hardly ever got personal time to spend with her.
I love my children dearly and I try my best each day to give them the best life but I believe that does not mean that I begin to neglect the relationship I once used to share with my wife. I missed the physical intimacy, the undivided attention and just spending some quality time with her.
Our conversations were always about our children and the only physical intimacy we shared now was changing our children’s diapers. She stopped taking care of herself and would constantly worry about the children.
The routine made me feel exhausted and I no longer felt a priority in my wife’s life. My needs were unmet and although there is no justification for infidelity, I found other women more comforting and welcoming.
I liked being in their company because I felt seen and heard. The old-school romance, the flirtatious texts, and the physical touch was replenishing and I felt like a man again. In couples therapy, I accepted these emotions and needs I have but I also learned how to communicate them to my wife openly.
And at the same time, my wife has been working on how to actively listen and validate them instead of brushing them under the carpet.
The practice of listening is the key to improving any relationship. In couples therapy, we could clearly see how we had blocked healthy communication and had become passive-aggressive. Bottling up your feelings only leads to a bigger reaction while communicating them invites different options to resolve them.
Another biggest problem that we worked on in couples therapy was the fact that I did not stop at one affair. I was involved with 5 different women each for a duration of 1-2 months. My wife could understand one ‘heat of the moment’ incident but 5 means that I was conscious of what I was doing and made a personal choice to cheat on her.
Couples therapy involved a lot of deep introspection as well. I had a deep need to feel wanted and feel loved. When I could no longer receive it from my life, I looked in other places to compensate for it. The relationship therapist worked with us individually as well and at that time I understood the root of this problem.
I shared a highly troubled and hot and cold relationship with my mother. I always had to fight for her love and affection. I found it in my wife and when it was taken away from me that same doomed feeling, guilt, and shame came rushing back. To avoid dealing with the past I convinced myself that having affairs would be a better way to deal with these feelings.
There is no excuse, explanation, or past that justifies hurting your loved ones. My inner child was hurt and in desperate need of love. I had to heal him and give him the love he needs and deserves and free myself from the heartbreak that my mother gave me.
It was immensely difficult, this part of accepting your demons and then letting them go. My wife has been the biggest blessing of my life. The fact that she even agreed to couples therapy and sit there and listened to my story touched something within me and I made up my mind to heal myself and change my ways.
The entire process and experience of couples therapy woke us up from a long sleep. We had been pushing our marriage down the priority list and one day we realized that we are no longer husband and wife, we are only a mother and a father. But that is not what we wanted. In fact, that is not what our children needed too.
Our children needed to see a happy and nourishing relationship. We are going to set the first example of what love looks and feels like and we definitely did not want them to see a boring, lackluster, and passionless marriage.
It has been 9 months since we completed our couples therapy. It was a long process but definitely a worthwhile one. My wife and I have found our way back to the friendship we once shared and we are now so much better at communicating our feelings and resolving our fights and arguments.
Yes, I had extramarital affairs and I do not feel proud about it but I take pride in the fact that my wife and I chose to take a brave step to go to couples therapy and make our marriage work not only for our children but also for the love and friendship we share with each other.