Affairs in a Marriage and the Big Role of Egos in It

affairs in a marriage

Affairs in a marriage are heart shattering, but are you upset about the heartbreak or are you furious because you’re a loser who was kept in the dark?

Talking about affairs and the way they change lives is sensitive and subjective.

Affairs happen for many reasons, but they have to end someday. It has to end in a relationship or end up breaking one.

They always have repercussions.

No matter how tiny the spark of infidelity is or how big, it always leaves a scar.

After an affair, some relationships bloom and get better. And some others, well they just wither and die.

So why is there such a stark difference in the way different couples respond to an affair?

An affair hurts everyone, unless you aren’t in love with your spouse.

But how is it possible for some partners to forgive a cheating lover while other partners end up hating their lover-turned-foe.

It all depends on the way couples react to an illicit affair, and what they really do about it.

Affairs in a marriage

To understand how you or your partner would react to the news of an affair in the marriage, you need to understand the true emotions that are experienced by the hearer of the bad news. [Read: How to resist temptation]

While an affair can happen for many reasons, the repercussions almost always depends solely on just two factors, the innocent partner’s ego and their humility.

How do you feel when you find out about the affair?

When you do find out about your partner’s affair, how do you feel? You’re obviously shattered and hurt. But what’s the one thing you feel more than anything else?

Is it pain, is it anger or is it humiliation?

While true love predicts that all lovers should experience pain, almost no one feels pure pain. Almost always, it’s anger or humiliation. Of course, you’re hurt. But the pain is bearable, at least at first. The only thing that’s hard to control is the anger or the humiliation. And what you feel at that moment predicts the path your relationship takes. [Read: The best way to end an affair]

Why do some relationships fail after an affair?

Many relationships fail after an affair. Even if it doesn’t happen immediately, the marriage may never feel like how it once did. Bitter lovers say they’ve lost trust in their partner, or that they can never really love the cheating partner again, now that they’ve been cheated on. But ask them what bothers them most about the whole affair, and most lovers are clueless. Of course, it hurts and you lost your faith in your partner. Perhaps you even remember the other man or woman each time you’re having sex with your unfaithful partner.

But why does all of this bother you?

There may be many reasons, but the real underlying reason is your own ego and your stubbornness to forgive your partner after the pain they caused you. It’s not a bad thing though. It’s just who you are. You caught your partner in the act or found yourself in the receiving end of a confession, and the first thing that hit you was ‘how could your partner ever cheat on you… on YOU?!’

Beyond the pain and the heartbreak, your ego just couldn’t accept the fact that you could be cheated on. Your ego was shattered when you realized that your partner found someone who was better than you. And even today, your ego probably can’t get over the humiliation it had to endure at that moment. And each time you see your partner, your ego swells up and you’re filled with rage for what your partner forced your ego to endure.

Understanding your own ego

All of us have an ego. And we choose to accept criticism when our egos feel small. On the other hand, we retaliate even if we’re wrong when our egos grow bigger than our head.

A good marriage involves two people who drop all their egos for each other. People who have difficulty genuinely accepting a mistake or asking for forgiveness usually make bad partners. Not because they’re perfectionists, but because they don’t like accepting defeat or compromising for anyone else. [Read: 25 relationship rules for successful love]

If your partner confesses to cheating on you and you let your ego get in the conversation, the first thing you’d want to know is how your partner could ever cheat on you! But if you take the ego and the rage away, the only thing your heart would want to know is how this could ever have happened to both of you and your relationship.

Your ego won’t allow you to think from your partner’s perspective or about your relationship. Your ego just wants revenge. And your ego will ensure that you can never forgive your partner.

And why do some relationships get better after an affair?

Affairs can have a good side to it too. Most of us who experience a long term relationship start taking our partners for granted. When you forget the value of something special, you lose the respect it deserves. And over time, you may lose respect for your partner because you don’t value them as much as you did at the beginning.

Many relationships get better after an affair. When you first hear about the affair, you may be devastated. But if you could keep your ego aside and realize that you’re on the verge of losing the most special person in your life, you’d understand the real gravity of the situation.

Humility and the willingness to forgive

To understand that an affair is only a sign of a bad relationship, you need to have humility. Face it, in almost all cases, the only reason your partner cheated on you was because you either started losing respect for your partner, took them for granted, or didn’t bother giving your lover the attention they wanted from you.

If someone else were to give the same attention to your partner, isn’t it obvious that they may fall in love with someone who loved them better and treated them better than you? [Read: To cheat or not to cheat?]

Humility can help you see the other side of the problem. It can open your eyes to the side you’ve been ignoring. It can reveal your partner’s plea for more attention and love from you. Humility can help you see the real cracks in the relationship, without focusing on the anger or the fact that you’ve just been cheated on.

It’s easy to feel like a loser or a dumb idiot when you find out that you’ve been cheated on, but are you the only loser here? Your ego can make you a narcissist. Humility can help you focus on the relationship and on what your partner feels.

Can you accept that you had a role to play in the affair?

Sometimes, we just end up with a bad partner in a marriage who can’t help cheating on you. If you’re stuck with a partner who constantly cheats, you’d obviously know the adage, once bitten twice shy, and end the marriage.

But if you’re in a marriage with a loving partner who confesses to cheating, is it completely your partner’s fault or do you have a role to play too? [Read: Should you ever confess to cheating?]

Almost all the time, it’s the little changes in your own behavior that makes your partner change too. And little changes that are overlooked over the years soon pile up and lead to an unhappy marriage. So again, do you think you have a role to play too? Can you put all the blame on your cheating partner alone?

Affairs in a marriage and the fight between ego and humility

Affairs in a marriage can creep into any marriage when partners start to lose respect or interest in each other. Irrespective of whether you let your ego or humility control your thoughts, always remember this –

Lovers never forgive their partner when they think the problem is with their partner.

On the other hand, lovers forgive their partner when they realize that the problem is in the relationship.

Learn to put yourself in your partner’s shoes however much it may hurt when you first find out about the affair. If you truly believe you have no role to play in the affair, you have every right to hate your partner. But if you realize that you’ve got a pretty important part to play in the affair, learn to face it and do something about it. Egos cloud your judgment, humility helps you think clearly.

[Read: How to confess to cheating in love]

Affairs in a marriage are inexcusable, even if they are at times, inevitable.  But how are you going to handle it, with humility or with your ego? That, my friend, makes all the difference in your love story.

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16 thoughts on “Affairs in a Marriage and the Big Role of Egos in It”

  1. Chelsea says:

    Enlightening read. What the author says makes a lot of sense. It’s such a simple and easy way to understand whether a relationship can survive after an affair or not.

    But as humans, we’re all extremely egoistic. Can any relationship ever really survive an affair, especially when revenge is such a strong trait of humans? Leaves us all with something deep to think about.

  2. joaqui says:

    I have read all these articles, all very interesting, but in real life it is not that easy! My husband has cheated on me more than once, I’ve forgiven him in the past, this time I can’t, don’t know what to do?, he doesn’t want to go, he won’t recognize that he is a cheater.
    All I want right now is revenge!

  3. gina says:

    This article is obviously written by someone who cheated.

    It is worded very manipulatively and some of the psychobabble is a stretch,

    Being doubtful of staying with a cheater is a healthy response.

    in fact, staying with one and being too quick to forgive may suggest low self esteem.

    The cheater best be doing a lot of hard work to earn back the trust he destroyed.

    Most marriages fail after infidelity because the cheater is not willing to to the difficult work for the hurt spouse to heal.

    That work is: to set stronger boundaries or to have humility of their own.

    Also, too often their defenses are high and they stubbornly try to cling to their old weak boundaries such as being too open to people of the opposite sex and being too flirtatious or continuing girl’s or boy’s night out or trips away without the spouse.

  4. Kenyatta says:

    This article sucked! It is never Betrayed Spouse fault during infidelity. Forgiveness has nothing to go with persons ego!

  5. Jenna says:

    First, this is written as to suggest that an affair is always a side effect of a bad marriage. This biased perspective is what perpetuates the rationalization that cheating in marriage is acceptable if you are not happy. For those who subscribe to this theory, I would say they are probably right, but the problems are more often than not created by the cheater. Those who solve problems by cheating lack the skills to communicate their needs to their partner, and often expect the partner to be a mind reader. Of course they are in a marriage that does not meet their needs, because they lack the skills to make their partner aware.
    Second – you talk about about ego in the betrayed spouse being a barrier to healing. Yet, you clearly state that the betrayed is upset the cheater found someone better than them. This is the most ego driven statement in the article. Only the ego would produce a thought of one being better than the other and this ego is the very thing that drove the cheater to cheat, to boost their own low-self-esteem by being with someone better.
    Third- You imply that it is the betrayeds fault the cheater cheated. This statement absolves the cheater of any personal responsibility for their own choices and lays the blame on the betrayed.
    It is entirely obvious this was written by a cheater and the rationalizations you’ve used to justify the behavior are in deed a way to preserve your own self-esteem. There is a lot of projection going on here. If your spouse does their own healing work and comes out the other side of the betrayal a healthy individual, your marriage most likely won’t last very long. Good luck to you, I hope you can keep working at it and drop some of your defenses enough to truely do some soul searching.

  6. tom says:

    Egos are healthy

  7. Lisa says:

    I value my partner’s ego and self esteem, and that is one reason I wouldn’t cheat. Why would you want to stay with someone who does not value and nurture your ego?

  8. Millie says:

    When it comes to extramarital rnoptileshias, a lot of time and energy is needed to get past the initial inner thoughts. The psychological blocks at the start of knowing the extramarital relationship has to be handled with lots of maturity and endurance. And to end up making the relationship a lot stronger after the extramarital relationship is possible but it takes a lot of commitment and energy towards the partner.|Lot of people develop a lot of resentment on the husband or wife because of the extramarital relationship. And this is tough to overcome when ignored. Dealing with our own thoughts is really essential and learning the root cause which pushed the spouse or the partner to have the affair needs to be known. Additionally this gives an improved understanding of your situation.|If you are faced with an affair don’t just think that things may workout on its own. One needs to face them and take care of them. In addition I think it is really important to find out if the partner is basically sorry and also feeling bad about their extramarital relationship or not. Always maintain the communication going very good. Also I found a helpful article here . Thanks for the post & Have a great day.thanks!

  9. Edward says:

    Really. Most cheaters don’t confess they get caught and its very egotistical of a wife or husband to think they even deserve a second chance I’m working 2 jobs paying for her mom living expenses sending her to school and helping with kids and hay that good smelling perfume she has on I gave it to her for our anniversary her pretty hair do i payed for that because it makes her feel good about her self that body your holding is from the gym I payed for because it helps her releave stress from being mom and wife I’d love to spend a couple hours like you do talking about our life holding her loving her but work helping with kids her in collage. Paying for mom no extra money for baby sitter because of life called adult hood we no longer kids in school so cheating just destroyed your family think I’m not going tell my baby’s her baby’s why dad and mom not together any more what is wrong with this word my mom dad was marred for 30 years neither even thought of cheating when my mom died my dad spent every day waiting for god put them back together. People need think am I really ready to destroy my family for a few hours of romance instead of just talking to the one person that probably lay down there life for you

  10. Lonza says:

    Wow – the author is cold hearted- why because the victim is blamed for having an ego and not forgiving! Isn’t that insane! Also the one who has an ego is THE PERSON WHO CHEATS! Their ego lead them to solve their issues by breaking a deep bond with their partner rather than being a grown up and talking about it or seeking counceling. Many narcissists, histronics and borderline personalities seek out affairs to build their self esteem. They need endless amounts of attention and no one partner could do it for them – EVER! Some one who choses to cheat as a relationship tool is selfish! There are also articles that state the one who cheats WANTS to punish and humiliate the partner/spouse. Yet that spouse should feel bad because – their ego got in the way for not forgiving? That is the carriage before the horse!

  11. Josh says:

    This article is garbage. Cheating is 100% about the person who is doing the cheating. You are being selfish and only worrying about your own needs. Maybe you need to feel pretty/handsome. Maybe you need to feel special. Maybe you just need to have lots of sex. The main thing, it’s always about the person cheating trying to fill their own needs. Well, okay, fill your needs, but don’t do it at the expense of your partner or family! Instead, communicated with your partner and work on a way to fill the needs that you have. If you really can’t get there, end the relationship and find someone that can fill the need, but DO NOT CHEAT.

  12. Bobbi says:

    Cheating is a choice & not the other persons fault, I have read so many articles that say that…and that the person who was deceived shouldn’t feel like they were at fault. I keep telling myself that but it sure feels like I did something wrong. It’s been a few years and still sucks. I keep searching for an article, words of wisdom, a book or something that will make it feel better.

  13. Ina says:

    Hi just found out about this site and concerning about the topic and when reading your posts it is very sad comparing yours and mine. Mine is the worst. It’s too sad to talk about it. and still having nightmares of the matter. Greetings and I am glad I have found this site.

  14. BL3xArVSx4 says:

    A loving cheater is an oxymoron, or simply a moron.

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