By Coleta Stewart
In today’s world, new communication technologies bring new challenges and opportunities for a spouse to commit emotional adultery or physical adultery if they so desire. But even though it might be easier to be unfaithful, that still does not make it right.
Emotional infidelity can hurt just as much as physical infidelity. The bottom line is that a spouse who is unfaithful (emotionally or physically) has broken their “life contract” with their mate. They have crossed the line by forming a close intimate relationship with someone outside of their marriage. If you are the innocent spouse, needless to say that finding out about the emotional adultery can stir up all sorts of negative emotions and feelings inside you. You may experience:
Anger that your spouse’s relationship is draining the life from your marriage as he or she pours more and more emotional energy into it and less and less into the marriage.
Neglect that your own relationship has deteriorated to functional communications about the kids, family finances and other obligations.
Sadness because your spouse is sharing an emotional connection with someone other than you.
More than likely the emotional adultery could be because of an intimacy breakdown in your marriage, so that is where you need to start focusing your attention. If your spouse owns up to what he or she has done and wants to change the behavior, then you can move forward and start working on repairing your marriage and rebuilding your own relationship intimacy once again.
To do this you’ll need to take a good hard look at your relationship, give it the third degree so to speak. Are they signs of wear or neglect in your marriage? Is communication healthy or lacking? This self examination will serve to point out deficiencies in your marriage that both you and your spouse need to be working toward fixing.
After your partner’s emotional adultery, learning how to strengthen your communication bonds, both verbal and non-verbal is a crucial step in developing a deeper emotional connection with him or her. If communication is virtually non-existent in your relationships, then you’ll both need to learn techniques and new ways to connect on a more intimate level.
This may not be easy in the beginning and it may take some time to develop the habit of better communicating, but you need to keep at it. This is by no means all that you need to do to rebuild your marriage. Far from it, there is more relationship work to do to create a more fulfilling marriage and rebuild that all-important emotional connection as you move beyond your spouse’s emotional adultery.