TheConfidante In the Media
Crossing the boundaries into infidelity is like tiptoeing over a minefield, as it can detonate a relationship's foundation and unleash a cascade of harmful effects that not only impact both people’s health but adversely affects generations. Sadly, I observe the profound effects each day in the counselling room.
Here's the ultimate chapter in my ongoing series on the Top 10 Relationship Blunders I've been crafting over recent years.. I’ve tapped fingers to keyboard on this topic a few times before, particularly at this time of year as we’re about to head into the silly season and it deserves a big mention in this series.
People are worn down, stressed out and let their guard down. I always receive plenty of grim feedback that it’s all too relevant and timely. So, I’m here to remind us that in a world of the “quick fix”, and as thrilling as these clandestine transgressions seem at the time, infidelity is a mistake fraught with consequences, and the harmful effects on both you and your partner's health can be profound and long-lasting.
Why do people still tread amongst these minefields still today? Here are three main reasons I observe most often:
1. A misguided attempt to cope with the stress of life. Stress, that relentless beast, pushes us into seeking solace elsewhere. An affair or the repeated dopamine hit of getting that online match, the direct message into your Instagram inbox or the excitement of meeting up with someone new becomes a temporary escape. It is a tantalising mirage in a desert of monotony, the pressures of small business, demanding children or financial overwhelm. But what seems like a brief reprieve soon morphs into a catastrophic storm, leaving not just the betrayed partner emotionally unsafe, battered and broken but the betrayer, in a world of confusion, shame and self-loathing. As trust shatters, sleepless nights become the norm, and anxiety and depression creep in like uninvited guests.
2. Feeling valued by fresh adoring eyes to boost self-worth is another potent reason behind infidelity. Insecurities about one's own attractiveness, intelligence, or worth can lead people to seek affirmation and validation from someone outside their committed relationship to fill the void. It's intoxicating to think that someone else adores you, even if it is based on lies and deception. Your new person or people become the first you want to share your recent news with. The betrayed partner now feels discarded, unimportant, and unloved. The emotional trauma from this abandonment can manifest physically. The profound sense of betrayal cuts deep, so as the betrayer’s ego is momentarily boosted, the injured partner’s self-esteem is shattered leading to self-doubt and a painful sense of inadequacy. They are left grappling with a haunting question – "Am I not enough?" These emotional wounds can fester and lead to various health issues, from compromised immune systems to chronic stress-related illnesses.
3. One of the most common reasons is that needs aren't being met in the current relationship. Dissatisfaction can breed temptation. Instead of addressing their concerns with their partner, they opt for the thrill of a secret liaison.
In essence, the mistake of crossing boundaries into infidelity isn't just a moral transgression; it's a genuine threat to the health and well-being of everyone involved, including children. The scars left by infidelity run deep, both emotionally and physically and whilst not always, I notice repeated behaviours passed down generations.
So, before you consider stepping onto the treacherous tightrope of infidelity, remember that the thrill is fleeting, but the consequences are not. A healthy, honest, and loving relationship, based on trust and communication, is the antidote to the poison of infidelity. In the end, it's always wiser to keep the boundaries of your commitment strong and unbroken, for the sake of both your own well-being, that of your partner and particularly any children that may inadvertently emulate your example one day.
Reach out to a professional therapist if you're struggling in this area. You can read more on my previous articles on this topic HERE.
Joanne Wilson is the Relationship Rejuvenator and author of Renovate Your Relationship – All The DIY Tools For Your Most Important Project ($29.99). She is a neuropsychotherapist inspiring the community for thriving and dynamic relationships that impact generations for mental well-being. Find out more about her online courses at www.relationshiprejuvenator.com
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Read this entire Top 10 Worst Relationship Mistakes series here.
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Joanne will be your Confidante, enabling you to speak freely in complete confidence and serenity. An integrated approach tailored to your specific needs will be utilised.
Joanne will be your Confidante, enabling you to speak freely in complete confidence and serenity. An integrated approach tailored to your specific needs will be utilized. Approaches such as Psychobiological Approach to Couple's Therapy (PACT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy and Emotionally Focused Therapy may be incorporated.
Relationship Specialist for individuals and Couples online around the world and servicing areas for virtual sessions around Australia and servicing many clients in Queensland including Caloundra, Noosa, Noosaville, Buderim, Mountain Creek, Gympie.