Maria and Ben (names changed to protect their privacy) came to see me after Maria discovered that Ben had been having an affair. Maria was distraught. She stated that her "world had fallen apart." She said that she couldn't stop thinking about Ben and the "other woman." She said that she spent her time checking his phone and emails to see if they had been in touch. She stated she could not trust that Ben would not cheat on her again. Most of all she was incredibly angry and hurt.
Ben said that he was relieved that the truth was finally out in the open. He said that he was tired of lying. He had broken it off with the "other woman" and said that he had told Maria everything. He was feeling impatient and wondered how long Maria's would remain angry and bitter. He was feeling scared that Maria would leave him.
Maria and Ben were trying to get past the affair and make their marriage work, but they were stuck. When they came into therapy, Maria and Ben were ready to work with me.
It wasn't easy, but Ben was able to be there for Maria as she worked through her rage and her ambivalence about staying in the relationship. The couple were able to look at what led up to the affair and learn what they could about each other and their individual needs. They decided to use the affair as a catalyst for positive change. Restoring trust took a long time, and Maria told me recently that it continues to be an ongoing process.
After being in therapy with me, the couple now have the tools that they are using to create their dream relationship. Their goal is ultimately to experience greater happiness, satisfaction, and joy in each other and in life.
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Gina Leiserowitz LMFT LPCC NCC