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Yet here was Angela about to end it all, with no apparent cause.I hypothesized to myself that their resolution of the event five years ago left something to be desired, that there still were major factors left unresolved between them.As a result, Stuart developed an entirely new respect for her.When Angela chose to forgive her husband, Stuart knew it was for real this time, and he could therefore begin to grieve his losses.Remember, forgiveness is a process; all the characteristics of genuine forgiveness will not always be present, but they should become increasingly apparent along the journey.An entangled affair is always the result of an intimacy deficit in the marital relationship.
Take each step as you both can handle it, adapting it to your own situation.
Angela claimed that she had forgiven her wayward husband, but I had a hunch that hers had been a surface–only forgiveness and that her depression was the result of buried feelings of hostility toward her unfaithful husband.
After the affair Angela determined to go on as though nothing happened and be a “hero of God’s grace.” She kept a stiff upper lip in their church circle and was viewed as a paragon of virtue.
Their communication and sex lives were practically nil, and Stuart was worried. After much discussion about various factors in their relationship, I began to find the clues I was looking for.
She didn’t know why, and her husband, Stuart, was equally puzzled. I insisted that Stuart stay around for the first few sessions—I wanted to get an idea of their history together.Angela discovered a whole new person—her real self—to share with her husband.At the end of that long and arduous process, they were able to stand before the congregation and share their testimony of healing without shame.Factors both inside and outside the marriage combined to cause the affair, and it’s helpful to review them. “Rats don’t have mice” goes a popular saying, and affairs do tend to run in families.