Is it Your Fault Spouse Cheated?

October 14th, 2015

Your spouse cheated, and your emotions and heart are devastated. Every negative thought possible seems to be running through your head as you realize you’re married to a cheater—something you may have thought you’d never have to deal with.

You know that being married is a partnership, and you may want to carry some of the blame for your spouse’s cheating.

Don’t go there.

Your responsibility comes now, post-affair. In this blog, we’ll look at 3 key responsibilities you have now as you try to pick up the pieces of your life and consider rebuilding your marriage. Read on…

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To Save Marriage, Do This…

January 26th, 2012

A lot of people equate the idea of “save marriage” with “give more.” One or the other spouse will claim that they give, give, and give some more—while their spouse takes, takes, takes and neglects to give back.

This can lead to resentment and blaming of the spouse that is perceived as being neglectful—a mindset that can undo even the best save-marriage efforts.

In this blog, you’ll discover three steps to stop giving until you bleed in order to save your marriage. Keep reading…

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How to Save Your Marriage From Fading Out

January 5th, 2012

If your relationship feels like it’s slipping away, I want to tell you about a secret ingredient for how to save your marriage from fading out.

This secret ingredient is something we all have—but don’t always remember to use. And if you don’t use it, a marriage bond that started out strong will slip over time unless this ingredient is present.

In this blog, I’ll share with you that secret ingredient—and 3 tips for adding it back into your marriage. Please keep reading…

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3 Red Flags Your Marriage-Saving Effort is Failing

July 27th, 2011

Either you or your spouse has had an affair, and it has devastated your marriage. Now, the mistake of the affair has been acknowledged, and you both wish to salvage what’s left of your relationship.

It’s not an easy fix. Many days you’ll feel as if it’s two steps back for every one step forward.

How do you gauge whether your rebuilding efforts are on track, or whether your efforts are doomed to failure? I’ll give you three red flags to be on the alert for which could signal the derailment of you and your spouse’s best efforts to save your marriage. To learn what those red flags are – and how to sidestep them – read more…

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Why Men Cheat: Are Wives Too Needy?

July 20th, 2011

After your spouse’s affair was revealed, you may have found yourself full of self-doubts. In fact, your spouse may have expressed that he or she thinks you’re being “too needy.”

If so, it probably made you feel even sicker inside than you already do, and planted a seed of self-doubt: Am I too needy? And if so, where has my power gone?

In this blog, we’ll explore what being ‘needy’ is and what it stems from. Read on to see if you’re currently suffering from neediness syndrome…

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When Post-Affair Communication Stalls…

July 13th, 2011

Communicating with your spouse may have been an issue prior to your spouse’s affair. Maybe you had arguments that became heated, best described as the “knock down, drag out” variety with no holds barred.

After the shock of finding out your spouse cheated, and the emotional upheaval that has left you reeling – communication may be at a standstill. Either you aren’t communicating at all, or worse: your communication is nothing but arguments and confrontation, where both sides are digging in, entrenched in their need to be “right.” When you argue with your spouse, it may feel as if you’re defending your very life.

Find out what may be causing your communication to stall – now when, more than ever, you need to communicate well in order to rebuild your marriage, and what a leading researcher has found that can turn around the dismal communication between you and your spouse…

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Is Your Marriage Really Over?

January 26th, 2010

It’s hard to believe… after all you’ve been through together… You did so well together for so long. You’ve been married for years, maybe decades. You may have raised kids who are now grown and out of the house. You’ve most likely suffered through financial difficulties, family crises, and personal catastrophes.

And now you’re wondering if it’s all over. Has the marriage you have worked for and cherished for so long finally run its course? Is this really the end?

Coping with an affair (or other traumatic event in your marriage) is one of the most difficult emotional experiences a human being can have. It’s complicated by the fact that there are only two people who can really decide whether or not the marriage is over: you and your spouse. No one else can make this decision for you. In this article I want to explore why that’s true and give you some insight on ways to consider staying in or leaving your marriage.

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Does Your Spouse Still Love You?

January 12th, 2010

“When I found out my husband cheated after 15 years of marriage it completely crushed me. It wasn’t just that he had slept with another woman; it was that I didn’t understand how he could say he loved me on one hand and completely betray me on the other. I thought if you loved someone you didn’t do things like that.

So I was left with this question: Does he still love me?

It took me years to figure out the answer.”

Does this woman’s struggle sound familiar to you? Do you wonder how your spouse could cheat on you if he truly loved you? Are you left with the sinking feeling that maybe your spouse doesn’t love you anymore and that your marriage is on the verge of collapse as a result of the lost love?

If so, you aren’t alone.

The question of whether or not your spouse is still in love with you is quite difficult to address. To be completely honest with you, there is only one person who can give you a real answer to that question, and that’s your spouse. The degree to which you believe this response is a reflection of the level of trust and honesty in your marriage.

However, in this article, I plan to give you some insight that may help reduce your anxiety and offer you some guidance about how to think about this question.

Cheating Doesn’t Mean He Doesn’t Love You

Let me start by stating something that may not be completely obvious to you at this moment: Just because your spouse cheated, it doesn’t automatically mean he or she has fallen out of love with you.

I know it is very difficult to reconcile the idea that someone who loves you can completely betray you. It would seem that if your spouse truly loved you, he or she would not have cheated.

I can tell you only what I observe: in some cases, the cheating spouse seems to be in love with the spouse, and in other cases, he or she is not. My observation does not always fit with what the cheating spouse says.

Sometimes the cheating spouse says there are reasons for going outside the relationship that have to do with the marriage, and sometimes the cheater will try to make it seem as if it had nothing to do with what was happening inside the marriage.

Regardless of the conscious or unconscious motivation, cheating was a decision.

There is no “excuse” for being unfaithful in a marriage, and no “reason” that can justify the action. As such, the choice to have an affair reflects, at minimum, a character leak in your spouse. He or she has a breach of integrity, and this is the real reason the affair happened.

This is all to say that having an affair and loving your spouse aren’t mutually exclusive. It’s possible that your spouse still loves you despite that fact that he or she cheated on you.

Now that we have established the possibility that your spouse still loves you, let’s look at the probability.

A Diamond That’s Been Trashed

In my long years as a marriage counselor I have noticed something incredibly interesting about love. The love that was put together when you first got married can endure an extraordinary amount of change and suffering. In almost all of the couples who come in to see me, the love they started with is still there. It’s just been buried.

Love is like a diamond. In your case, it’s like a diamond that’s been trashed. The love you share with your spouse may be covered in the mud and grime of miscommunications. It may be buried in the hurt of emotional outbursts or years of silence. It may be disgustingly filthy with the vomit and dog poop of a horrific affair.

But in the end, it’s still a diamond.

You can pick up this diamond, clean off the filth, and you still have a beautiful gem. Your love endures.

That may be true of the feelings your spouse has for you as well, even if he or she doesn’t currently recognize it. This is definitely not universal; it doesn’t fit for all couples or all people. There are those out there who truly fall out of love. But in my experience, of the people who come to me, these cases are rare.

What happens instead is that the love gets buried. People get confused. They lose their way.

But just because they are lost, it doesn’t necessarily mean they have fallen out of love with you.

In fact, your spouse may not be fully aware of the depth of his feelings himself. Over the course of this traumatic time you may hear things like:

. “I love you, but I am no longer in love with you anymore.”
. “I never really loved you. I just married you out of a sense of obligation.”
. “I was afraid you would fall apart if I told you how I really felt.”

Even statements like these don’t necessarily mean your spouse has fallen out of love with you. They are more an indication of the poor state of your relationship than they are a meaningful measure of your spouse’s love. However, your spouse may have so much resentment and hurt that he or she is not willing to consider anything but leaving.

So where do you go from here?

Take a Magic Pill

The question that I ask people when they come in to see me stating they have lost their loving feelings is this:

. If I could give you a magic pill that would make you suddenly fall deeply in love with your partner again, would you take it?

If your spouse has said something like, “I love you, but I am no longer in love with you” he or she needs to ponder the answer to this question. It wouldn’t hurt for you to ponder the answer to this question as well.

If the response is “yes I would take the pill,” it means somewhere your spouse still has feelings for you. You (and/or your spouse) want to rebuild your relationship, you just don’t know how to do it.

This is actually good news. The main thing you need to heal your marriage is a deep desire and a strong commitment to repair the relationship. Learning how to do it comes by acquiring a set of skills that can be taught to you.

If the answer is “no I wouldn’t take the pill,” then the prognosis is much worse. Your spouse may truly have fallen out of love with you, or he may be so lost that he can’t or won’t access the loving feelings he still has.

In some cases it takes a dramatic event of some kind to uncover these feelings again. I have seen clients who don’t wake up and realize that love is still there until the marriage is falling completely into ruin. Divorce papers may be ready to be signed, the loving/injured spouse may be packing up and walking out, and only then does the cheating/out-of-love partner realize how he or she truly feels.

It’s also possible that the person never wakes from this slumber of lost love or moves on to a different relationship and uses that new relationship as a fun distraction to get away from thinking or feeling about your marriage.

In any event, if your spouse would refuse the magic pill, things are looking pretty bad. Depending on how committed the person is to leaving the relationship, this may be the end. It’s still possible to save your marriage on your own (a topic I have written about at length in my book Saving Your Marriage) but doing so is less probable. You may even need to employ the assistance of a therapist experienced in poor prognosis marriages.

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Discover the underlying problems of your marriage. Inside Saving Your Marriage, Dr. Gunzburg reveals where your marriage problems come from and realistic steps for fixing them and restoring the love.

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Deciding if it’s Time to Consider Divorce

December 1st, 2009

“What if I have tried everything, and my marriage still doesn’t seem like it’s getting better? Is there a time I should give up and move on with my life?”

Are you asking yourself questions like this right now? Are you worried that you’ve tried everything, and still your marriage is on the verge of collapse.

Do you suffer with the pain and anguish thoughts like these bring with them?

If so, let me assure you, you are not alone.

As a marriage counselor, I hear questions like this from clients all the time.

People come into my office, having tried their best to put their marriages back together again, and desperately hope I can give them some insight about whether or not it’s time to end the marriage, get a divorce, and move on with their lives.

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Picking up the pieces after the affair…

August 18th, 2009

Are you still picking up the pieces of your relationship after the
affair. Has it been months… maybe years without any luck of
any positive change. If you are fighting to fix what has been
broken then I want to tell you a story…

Even though this may sound like a fairy tale, it certainly didn’t
start like one.

(I’ve changed the names, to protect the couple.)

Kevin was manager of a very successful restaurant
and Donna was a nurse. After being married for 17 years, 2 kids
and two very demanding jobs they emotionally grew apart.

Sound familiar?

What made it worse is when Kevin came home and dropped the

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