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After An Affair - Take 3 Crucial Steps To Saving Your Marriage
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Many aspects of life can be divided into three stages or states, depending on how you want to think about it. The situation of a marriage and an affair are no different.

With the compromised marriage, first there is the past - perhaps when you were newly weds and nothing could ever go wrong. Now is the present, where you are feeling shattered and broken. Then there will be the future, when hopefully the marriage recovers.

It is rather too simplistic to just think of before the affair - past, now - the affair, future - getting over the affair. If you really want to save your marriage, then you both have to put the affair very firmly in the past. The present is the recovery stage, where you are making positive decisions about the way to continue into your future. You need to find a way to put the shock and pain of the affair firmly behind you both, before you have any chance to move on. 

But please do not be fooled; this is not the simple solution. It might appear easier, to not have to split up and sell the house, divide possessions and tell the world, but it most certainly is not the simple way out. In fact it might be said to be the most difficult -  the one you have to work at every single day. Here are the three steps that you will have to take to make progress towards saving your marriage.

1 Decide for certain that it is what you both want to do. 2. Stop stressing about what is past. 3. Move forward - try finding something new to share.

Step one - decide it is what you both want to do. No matter how hard you try, you cannot save your marriage on your own. If both partners do not totally agree that you should work on the marriage, then forget it. You cannot bribe, force or persuade your partner to stay married to you; you must both actually want this to happen.

So this is the first major step; find out by talking, communicating, sharing your feelings and being totally honest, without tantrums and mock (disgust). Ask and answer the question - if the answer is yes then, and only then, can you start to take the next step.

Step two - stop stressing about what is past. It is past and gone! I read a lot of forums with messages from people who are supposed to be trying to move on from an affair. What do they write in these forums? They tell all the sordid details of the affair, such as who said what to whom etc, etc. It is like a pity me party. Then there are the - oh he did that to you, well mine did this to me. It is as if they are trying to score in the 'whose husband was the worst' contest. Oh and then there are the 'he let me down and he let God down' messages. I am sure that God can sort this out in his own good time. After all he has eternity to do it.

These messages are getting them absolutely nowhere; they are constantly writing and reading negative messages, which continue to reinforce their bad feelings. You have to stop sweating the past and move forward. So get it all out, but not in public - or to your friends or family. He has to face them in the future too. You could write it all down once and for all, in a private book. All the bad feelings, then let him read it.

Perhaps he has things he wants to say too. Then, after taking note of any things which might help your marriage, burn this book or rip it up symbolically. If you genuinely want the marriage to survive, then that is the end of the affair. Finito!

Step three - moving forward. Find something new to share. No this is not the time for a make up baby - as if that ever worked! It is the time to make plans for the future. Find things that you can do or work on together. Rekindle the spirit from those early days. See the great things that you loved in those first stages of courting and romance.

Make time to be a couple, go out for a meal, well perhaps he prefers take-out, that might be, but once in a while make an effort. See a film, go to a concert or a comedy show; laughing together is excellent making up medicine.

Now you have succeeded in surviving the affair, you can look forward to a better future together.

If anyone told you this was going to be easy, they were either lying to make you feel better, or simply mistaken. Most things worthwhile need some effort and helping your marriage to survive is no exception.

Street Talk

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