Webster’s defines infidelity as unfaithfulness to the marriage vow or contract; a violation of the marriage contract by adultery. If you have ever been the victim of a cheating husband, you know it is much more.
Infidelity is the breaking of trust that has negative consequences in every area of your life. The first step in surviving a husband’s infidelity is being able to rationalize and understand the actions that have caused so much harm.
There are two types of infidelity, sexual infidelity and emotional infidelity: Sexual Infidelity:
Sexual infidelity, as its name suggests, refers to sexual activities that are engaged in with someone other than one’s spouse. Activities that constitute sexual infidelity include all forms of physical intimacy, from kissing to sexual intercourse.
Emotional infidelity refers to becoming emotionally involved with someone other than one’s spouse. Dr. Seth Meyers, a Licensed Clinical Psychologist, describes emotional infidelity as “behavior that one partner engages in that fosters emotional intimacy in the here-and-now and sometimes promotes the possibility of sexual intimacy in the future.”
It all sounds fairly simple, huh? Either your husband did the hanky panky with someone else or he has put someone else’s emotional needs before your emotional needs. If you’ve been on the receiving end of either, the need to understand runs a bit deeper, doesn’t it?
It has been my experience, after coaching many women who were victims of infidelity, that the roots of the infidelity can generally be traced back to one of three underlying causes.
Men who suffer emotional injuries during childhood are more likely to cheat on a spouse. Emotional childhood injuries may cause a fear of intimacy, a fear of commitment, and a fear of being unworthy of love.
If your husband has had problems with attaching himself to you intimately, was commitment phobic, and suffers from low self-esteem, these traits probably played a role in his infidelity.
Some men cheat because of the sense of loneliness they feel in the marriage. Usually this type of man is not able to fully engage with his wife. He doesn’t fully participate in the relationship and is a sitting duck for any woman who can give him the companionship he feels is missing in his marriage.
Are you married to a conflict avoider — a man who thinks that any show of disappointment by you is an affront to the relationship?
According to Emily M. Brown, author of Affairs: A Guide to Working Through the Repercussions of Infidelity, the conflict avoider is “terrified to be anything but nice for fear that conflict will lead to abandonment.” They don’t have a way to stand up to their spouse where there are marital problems, so the problems go unresolved and the marriage erodes.
This guy acts as if he is happy, everything is coming up roses and all the while, he is seething with anger inside. He is angry because you poked fun at his bald spot. We all know that a woman who truly loves her husband would never poke fun or so he believes.
He is angry because you failed to pick up his dry cleaning. You will be the last to know how angry he is, though, because of his skewed belief that his marriage is perfect and perfection means putting a lid on anger.
He doesn’t even realize how angry he is until he meets a woman who would never poke fun at his bald spot and never forget to pick up his dry cleaning. Not until she got comfortable in the relationship, anyway. Once she becomes comfortable and turns into a normal human being, he can go back to repressing anger again.
Whatever drives a man to cheat, be it fear, loneliness, or anger, it is important to know that the decision to cheat was his. Infidelity has nothing to do with a shortcoming on the part of his wife.
There are many things a wife can do to improve the quality of her marriage.
There is absolutely nothing she can do that will guarantee with 100 percent certainty that her husband will never cheat.
She can know though with 100 percent certainty that if he does cheat it is about him and whatever issues he is dealing with.