Q&A with Dr. Carletta Perry: He cheated

Published 9:59 pm Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Q: He cheated. I fought for our marriage and two young children. He had a child with her, and I was devastated. He wants to repair our marriage, but I am not sure if we can or if I want to. What’s going on with me?

A: I am so sorry you had to go through this. It is not easy to grieve with two young children.

Yes, I said, “grieve.” You are grieving the sacred nature of marriage, the promise of fidelity, and the trust and vulnerability you shared with your partner.

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Trust is often thought to be difficult to give, maintain and rebuild. However, the vulnerability it takes to trust someone can be hard for many of us.

Then, the flood of questions flows: “How could you? How could you do this to me? How could you do this to us and our family?” The questions end with: “I trusted you.”

You ask what is going on with you. You are experiencing a lot of emotions, such as hurt, sadness, and anger. In fact, many people in similar situations go through the stages of grief.

It sounds like you are entering into the stage of acceptance. This stage is the one in which you accept that the situation happened. You don’t accept the act; you only accept that the situation happened.

Although the stages of grief are called stages, most people experience the stages in random order. For example, you may be entering the stage of acceptance but you are still bargaining or fighting for your marriage. You are still angry, and there may be times of depression or crying.

The decisions you have in front of you are not easy, but they are very personal, and you need to make them with a rational mind and a clean heart, following a conversation with your partner, counseling to work through the past issues and a lot of prayer.

One day, you are going to love him, and the next day you might hate him. One day you will want to repair your marriage, and the next day you might want a divorce.

I know you want a clearer answer, but only time will soothe your pain, and only God can heal your wounds. Take it one day at a time and make the decision you can live with.

Dr. Carletta N. Perry offers therapeutic life, relationship and career coaching. Catch her television show, “It’s Life Changing with Dr. Carletta Perry,” Sundays at 11:30 p.m. on WSKY/SKY-4 and on YouTube. Email her at contact@drcarlettaperry.com.