Don’t Let Infidelity Warning Signs Ruin Your Self-Worth
Infidelity warning signs can have a devastating effect on you if you think or know your partner is cheating. Your emotions will be in turmoil and even your physical health might suffer. Surviving real or perceived adultery requires you to understand how infidelity warning signs are impacting you. Only then can you settle on coping strategies and decision-making that’s best for you, your relationship and your family.
Your emotional reaction to a partner’s affair can mimic the classic symptoms of loss defined by famed psychiatrist Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. First, you may deny all the signs that your spouse is cheating. Once that denial becomes impossible, you might get angry and find thoughts of hurting or even killing your partner emerging in your mind. Next you might try to bargain with yourself or God (“If I change, I’ll win her back;” “If I love him more, he’ll stop cheating on me”). You might fall into a depression (more on that below). Finally, you will find acceptance and be able to figure out what to do, i.e., how to confirm your suspicions, when to confront your spouse, whether to try to salvage your relationship and perhaps most significantly, how to repair your self-worth.
All told, your spouse’s unfaithfulness can create the same trauma and emotions that the death of a loved one engenders, perhaps because you’re mourning the “death” of the person you thought you knew and the potential or actual death of your relationship.
Placing blame is also common when you’re processing infidelity warning signs. You might blame yourself for not being “enough” for your partner–sexy enough, pretty enough, smart enough, loving enough–all of which can wreak havoc on your self-esteem. Or rather than self-blame, you might blame your partner, which will breed distrust and disharmony in your relationship, especially if you don’t know for sure what’s going on. The “other” woman or man might also become the target of your blame because it’s easier to transfer your anger to him or her, particularly if you’re still in love with your partner. What to do with all that blame is one of the key decisions you’ll have to make to bolster your self-esteem.
Your spouse’s real or imagined affair can also cause you physical suffering. In particular, you might develop depression with its many symptoms including self-neglect, under- or overeating and insomnia, all of which will disrupt your health.
Only you and your partner can decide if you’re equally willing to work out your issues and recreate your relationship. It’s interesting to note that despite the prevalence of affairs (up to 60% of men and 40% of women), if you divorce because of a specific affair it’s unlikely your spouse will stay with his or her paramour in the long run. Notes Menstuff®, “Dr. Jan Halper’s study of successful men (executives, entrepreneurs, professionals) found that very few men who have affairs divorce their wife and marry their lovers. Only 3 percent of the 4,100 successful men surveyed eventually married their lovers.”
In the stressful, mixed-up world of infidelity warning signs, understanding your emotional and physical responses will help you cope and give you better decision-making abilities.
Visit these pages for more information:
Emotional Infidelity: Is It Really Cheating?
Healing Infidelity Takes Time And Teamwork
Is Infidelity In Marriage Harming Your Relationship?
Online Infidelity – A Serious Threat To Your Relationship
Preventing Infidelity Means Understanding Why It Happens
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