What happens when the person you rely on to provide comfort, stability, and safety surprisingly causes stress, insecurity, and pain?
This circumstance is the common problem presented in the aftermath of infidelity.
Caught Between the Past & the Present
Previously, you viewed your spouse as a haven to gravitate toward during life’s most trying times. Now you’re caught between conflicting emotions and instincts. You may desire distance repulsed by their betrayal. Yet, contrarily, as a result of that same betrayal, you make need and seek intimacy from them.
The whirlwind of conflicting emotions is typical of the response to the traumatic event of adultery, similar to post-traumatic stress disorder. The corresponding push and pull is a confusing mixed bag. In a way, it’s a form of fight or flight.
- Seek closeness with your spouse?
- Push them away?
Answering these questions may change depending on the current context and the extent of the previous indiscretions.
The optimistic outlook suggests that when both parties put in the work required, you can overcome attachment ambivalence over time (6-18 months).
Of course, things don’t always work out. Perhaps you feel the need to end the relationship. The worst case is you suspect your partner is reverting to their old ways.
If you still feel attached but need the truth for closure, consider a licensed private detective like Magnum Investigations.