Dealing with Emotions During and After an Affair
Welcome to Healing From Within with your host Sheryl Glick, author of her newest book in the trilogy A New Life Awaits which shares stories and messages from Spirit to show us that our challenges are not merely economic, political or societal issues but a disconnect from our true being or soul wisdom. In today’s episode Julia Keys and Jacqueline Coles authors of The MANscript will share how finding out about her famous husband having an affair with a friend of her daughters while devastating was a way for her to identify her own inner strength and find a way to master her emotions.
As listeners of “Healing From Within” are well aware Sheryl and her guests share intimate stories and insights into the dual nature of our spiritual and physical lives in the attempt to self- investigate and understand the many difficulties people face in family parental and spousal relationships, for we find relationships are the way we learn to understand our emotions and reactions to all events in our lives and rediscover life is really a journey of the soul to remember the infinite potential we have to thrive and evolve in a world that is always changing.
In today’s episode of Healing From Within Julia Keys author of The MANscript will share learning about the affair of her husband Richard Keys which was even harder for her and the family as he was a celebrity and it was in the tabloids and the aftermath that followed. The ordeal tore Julia and her family apart and Julia and her friend Jacqui, both nurses and counselors created the book The MANscript which outlines what men say and do when they are caught cheating so that women can identify it. We will learn essential information on dealing with emotions and how to make the best decisions for the future after a hurtful situation.
When Julia is asked to think back to her childhood and remember a person place or event that may have signaled to her or others the lifestyle she might embrace as an adult she immediately tells of sitting with her father at the piano where her father played without being able to read music and how she so enjoyed that special time with him. Sheryl remembers having a grandmother who also played beautifully without reading music and her father who played the violin. Music is the language of the soul and deep wisdom and brings a feeling of connectedness and safety often into our complicated lives.
Julia tells us why she wrote this book and how infidelity affected her. The MANScript is designed to help you.
- Have the confidence to say how you feel, in the hope of bringing about a form of communication, which will facilitate a resolution to the conflict you feel.
- Know you are not on your own with your feelings.
- Feel stronger again when you are at your most vulnerable.
- Gain the tools to stay focused on what is real.
- Understand that whatever the outcome of your suspicions, you can survive and be happy. At every stage of betrayal, communication is the key to saving your relationship or moving on.
The MANScript is designed to bring your attention to the various scripts that men use when cheating. Armed with this knowledge, you will be more able to talk about your suspicions, Julia Keys and Jacqui Coles in a calm and appropriate manner show readers how to ask questions early on when you intuitively have a gut feeling that something is not right and communicating your concerns with your partner. You are then opening the door to an opportunity to discuss the worries you both may have. This book will guide you through all the emotions you feel, from that initial twinge of suspicion to potentially dealing with the pain and grief at the loss of a relationship
Infidelity can be devastating , often destroying families and leaving the victim the betrayed partner, feeling like they can never trust another partner again. Sometimes women are the last to know they are being cheated on and once they do find out, they have no idea how to deal with the practical issues that infidelity creates, let alone the emotional debris. Now here is the MANscript the first book of its kind to outline exactly what men say and do when they are cheating and how to cope with the aftermath.
Throughout this book, we are very clear that it is a person’s choice to have an affair and that applies to both men and women. Jacqui and I want to emphasize that without communication in a relationship, there is no opportunity for you or your partner to put right what may be wrong. This is when regrets can kick in and you may find yourself looking back and wishing you had done certain things; had more sex or shown him more love. Whatever your regret might be, if your partner had talked before taking the decision to have an affair, maybe it could have been prevented. That is why we say it is not your fault if your partner chooses to have an affair and not talk to you. We strongly encourage you to talk, talk, talk—about any problems you have—in the hope that you can avoid the pain of betrayal. If he can communicate what was wrong with your relationship as an excuse for cheating, then he could have told you before he was tempted to cross the line.
If you/your partner has been unfaithful but want to repair your relationship the most important script that you need to know about to save your relationship, is the Reconciliation Script. This is the script that he must commit to, for you to have any chance of trusting him again.
The Reconciliation Script He must:
- Have absolutely no contact with the Other-Woman.
- Accept the Other-Woman no longer exists in his life.
- Allow you to distrust him.
- Show you how much you matter to him.
- Not show anger or frustration when you question him and show a lack of trust.
- Take actions that speak louder than his words.
- Be prepared to talk openly to you and answer your questions.
- Have patience; rebuilding trust takes a very long time.
- Earn your forgiveness.
How does Julie?
Julia helps readers navigate the tumult an affair causes to emerge stronger and happier as well as to help her clients realize that they are often not to blame for what their partner chose to do. She encourages talking about it and finding support groups to see them through the painful changes that come as a result of the breakdown of a relationship that should have been sacred. The majority of women we speak to say their main and only support has been friends, usually more so than family. In many cases, they kept the pain and anguish hidden from their loved ones. There is a fear of being judged by other people (and sometimes concern about the partner being judged). The fear of being viewed as a failure has been their primary motivation for keeping the situation a secret. This can lead some susceptible women into isolation, depression and anxiety. There is one word that sums up the feelings you have after finding out you have been cheated on and that is excruciating. It can be so damaging to women, yet infidelity is the elephant in the room. It happens all the time, but for some women there is a reluctance to talk about it, or acknowledge it, mainly because of shame. How a woman deals with the impact of an affair can significantly impact her self-esteem, her health and that of her friends, family and children, if applicable. Why is it that a woman can carry the burden of that shame when it is her partner who should be the shameful one? Feelings of shame can lead to poor mental and physical health, panic attacks, and loss of confidence. Experts believe it can cause Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
One thing is for sure; unwanted images, irrational thoughts, emotional numbness, fear, a foggy mind, an inability to sleep and unpredictable explosions of anger and/or uncontrollable sobbing, can overwhelm every woman who has been betrayed. A woman can also become totally obsessed with wanting to know the truth and become a super-vigilant, amateur detective and forensic investigator.
As women, we can also inflict excruciating pain on ourselves by taking the blame for our partner’s actions. Many women follow a self-blame script. By doing this, we deflect the responsibility away from our partner and give him the perfect justification for his actions. We have deliberately repeated some messages about looking after yourself and not taking the blame. This is imperative to your recovery. We want to keep reminding you that it was your partner’s choice to have an affair, that you did not ‘make’ him do it and that it is not your fault; he made that choice. You deserve to be valued and respected. You will see throughout the pages of the book we do not use the word humiliated. Many women use this word to explain how they feel after discovering their partner’s affair. We don’t use it because it is not you who should be humiliated. It is your partner and the Other-Woman. They are the ones who should be humiliated by the way they have behaved. If you are one of those women, who is feeling humiliated,
Knowing your partner is following the same script as many other men will empower you to see how unimaginative a man who cheats really is. Information gives a person power. It enables you to make decisions, which keep you safe and reduce your vulnerability. The author’s main aim in this book is to give the power back to you.
Some men may feel it is their right and it is natural for them to be involved with other women. There is an old patriarchal belief that it is acceptable and they don’t realize the damage and harm they do to their spouses or partners. Julia writes, “Some men have said this book is ‘too accurate to publish.’ Other men have been extremely supportive—surprisingly, many are men who have had an affair—while other men, the naysayers, have used words such as ‘dispirited’, ‘distasteful’, and ‘offensive.’ We think you probably get the picture. One man told us that this sort of thing shouldn’t even be talked about. “Why do women have to tell everyone when they have been cheated on?” It is the same old script. “I can cheat on you but don’t tell anyone.” No! It doesn’t work like that. You need to talk and find support. If men find it distasteful or offensive that you are choosing to not feel alone or unsupported, then the message to them is simple. Stop cheating.
We tell unfaithful women the same message as we tell men. You ‘chose’ to have an affair, it is not something you were ‘made’ to do. In fact, sometimes men who have been cheated on, may find it harder to deal with the issue, than women. Many of the men we spoke to told us that it was their ego, plus the fact that they don’t like to be left on their own, that made it difficult to accept rejection, alongside their desire to save face. Some went as far as saying they told their mates, “I was going to dump her anyway.” We hope any man reading The MANScript will learn something from it as well. Ironically, my husband did when he read the first draft of the book. He told me that he could see himself in every script and that was when he realized the writing was on the wall for the affair he was having. The MANScript made him wake up to what he was losing and what a fool he had been. However, it was only when we finally went to court, making the situation real, that the full impact of his affair hit him.
The men who were having an affair seemed to be following a script. Not only were they saying similar things, but their behavior was also very predictable. The same lies were being said to their partners and the same excuses were being used in an attempt to cover up their deceit and infidelity. My husband was also following the same script and that is how I caught him out. The scripts appear to follow a pattern. There are scripts men follow before they are caught. There are scripts they adopt for themselves (his Own Script). There is the script for their partner; the script they spin to the Other-Woman; and the scripts they tell your friends, their family and work colleagues. His Own Script • No one will find out. • I won’t get caught. • She will be grateful, because I won’t be asking her for sex. • What she doesn’t know can’t hurt her. • It’s just a physical thing. • I deserve the thrill of an affair because my life is otherwise miserable. His Other-Woman Script What he tells the Other-Woman • She doesn’t understand me. • We live separate lives. • We haven’t had sex for a long time. • I don’t love her anymore. • There is no romantic connection between us anymore. • We are more like brother and sister. • We are only together for the children. • You are the most gorgeous woman I have ever known. • I love you. • I am going to leave her for you. • She has betrayed me.
His Other People Script • It is not what it seems. • She has got it all wrong. • My life has been very difficult for a long time. • We live totally separate lives. • She has betrayed me; had an affair, is an alcoholic; or spent all my money. • She told me our relationship/marriage was finished, so that is why I continued the affair. • People are stirring up trouble and saying things that aren’t true.
We can help men understand their behavior and why they use typical scripts they tell themselves as well as their wives, families friends colleagues and other women
First we must understand The tell-tale signs
- Your gut instinct.
- His changing behavior.
- He stops noticing you.
- Signs of sexual activity.
- His appearance.
- He becomes secretive about his mobile telephone, tablet/laptop and emails.
- He spends less time at home.
- He is increasingly late home from work /gym.
- He shows less interest in having sex with you.
- He talks about the Other-Woman.
When he has been ‘found out’ It’s your fault (of course!)
We could write an entire book about the excuses men tell and the blame they fire at us women! Men who cheat are masters of rewriting history to suit themselves. But before we tell you what the most common excuses are, here is a selection of jaw dropping, real-life quotations from men we spoke to during the research for this book.
- “It was a lack of oxygen to my brain that made me not realize what I was doing!”
- “I swear to you, since the day we married, I have never once taken off my wedding ring. I just happened to not have it on in that photo.”
- “I don’t know how she got pregnant with my baby because I have never had sex with her.”
- “I never wanted to hurt you, I just didn’t expect to get caught.”
- “She categorically was not in our flat; that underwear has to be yours.”
- “I was so shocked when you told me that she had put a picture on Facebook showing she was in the same hotel as me. I left straight away before she realized I was there too. It was a close shave!”
- “I deny everything only because I don’t want to hurt you by telling you the truth.”
- “You psychologically willed me to have an affair so you could be proved right.”
- “I bought her the engagement ring she is wearing as a goodbye gift because I felt sorry for her!”
- “I had no idea she was going to be in Trinidad at the same time as me, what a coincidence!”
Here is a story that shows for many people the desire to be creative and love a person as well as to find a great love in life beyond boredom or routine leads people to have an affair. It often is not merely about sex but something deep within the soul that yearns for love and when we understand how deep this desire to love is we might not take it so personally but see it as a soul remembrance that finds difficulty dealing with the physical world. Mandy, a fifty-seven-year-old counsellor with three grown-up children from Ireland said, “I found out that my husband of thirty years had been writing long love poems every day for the woman he was having an affair with. Every morning she woke up to a poem he had sent by email. I was so shocked when I found them as never in all the time I had known him, had he ever written anything romantic for me, yet alone a poem. I really didn’t know him at all.” Even if you decide to stay, you will still grieve. You cannot escape the process of grief; you have to surrender to it and accept it.
Sheryl says It is much like remembering to accept your life plan and soul destiny. Sheryl believes that nothing is random and the people and experiences we are meant to have are included in our life journey and if we try to look at everything, not as good or bad, just experiences without judgement, we are truly able to accept whatever happens and find peace beyond the moment of whatever negative emotion we have allowed ourselves to feel. Not easy perhaps to accomplish, but if you can you truly evolve and know yourself as loving souls beyond the physical challenges of hardship.
When a man has an affair with a younger woman is it often a mid-life crisis or is this just an excuse? It might just be an excuse or his own fear of growing older himself but it probably has little to do with the age of woman. A younger woman might not have much life experience and be in awe of the accomplishments of a more mature man like his money and power or have a fixation on their own fathers.
Typical male excuses
- You were not there for me when I needed you to listen to me.
- You spend more time talking to your friends than me.
- You only have time for the children leaving me feeling frozen out.
- You put everyone else before me.
- You are obsessed with your job.
- You spend too much money.
- You drink too much.
- You don’t look after yourself; you are a mess.
- You don’t let me anywhere near you.
- You don’t show me affection.
- We never have sex.
- You don’t understand me.
- You told me it was over between us.
- It’s all in your head. His justification
- I didn’t plan it, it just happened.
- I thought you didn’t love me.
- It was a fantasy that wasn’t real; it was a bit of fun and excitement.
- Everyone does it.
- I was drunk.
- It only happened once (it rarely does).
- A man has needs.
- I felt guilty all the time, as I was really thinking about you.
- I have learnt my lesson and will never do it again.
- I’ve learnt my lesson and I have changed.
Standing by Julia’s side, Jacqueline realized that although her own memories of the cheating she had experienced were still able to take her by surprise (she would be lying if she said she didn’t shed some tears), She realized how that experience made her a stronger person. She made a pact with herself that she never again would allow anyone to walk all over me and take her for a fool. As much as it was devastating and hurtful at the time, it is probably one of the most important experiences she ever had in life. It helped her become the person she is today. She realized a long time ago that there comes a point when you have to focus on yourself and let go of the painful memories around you. Bitterness can be so consuming it can even show in your face. Remember, you attract more bees with nectar than you do with vinegar, so no matter how hard it is, try to set yourself free from the burden of the bitterness. In both my professional career and personal life, I have supported so many women who believed at the time of finding out about their partner’s affair that they would never survive. They never thought that eventually they would thrive. Those who have been able to let go and focus on themselves have certainly thrived. You never recover from betrayal by travelling in a straight line, so you have to accept there will be bad days as well as good, but always look forward.
Julia wants readers to take away with them after reading The MANscript that you are not to blame yourself for the betrayal and she writes, “Of course, he will do everything he can to create self-doubt. Do not allow your instinct to be challenged, otherwise you are on the road to not trusting yourself, something that can come so easily with betrayal. Often it can be the tone of his voice or subtle changes in the person you thought you knew so well. Something starts to niggle you. It can be very basic, like finding a receipt for flowers or jewellery you never received, or an increase in sudden or frequent late-night texts. They are the obvious signs, but some men are better than others at deceit. Despite this, even the most deceptive men make a mistake in the end; take your time and be patient. Once you have suspicions and then evidence that he is unaware of, you are in control of the situation. To be a good liar you have to have a good memory and sooner or later he will slip up and you will get your proof. How many times have you heard someone say, “I wish I had listened to my gut instinct. I just had a feeling something wasn’t right?” Don’t go making any life-changing decisions based on gut instinct alone, instead use it as a reason to dig deeper and find concrete evidence of him MANScripting you.
We thank Julia Keys author of The MANscript for helping both men and women understand the reasons and implications that an affair has on the personal power, emotional well- being of the people involved and the changes that must result from a loss of trust and a deep betrayal. In order to understand how it happens and how many similarities there are in all affairs even though the people are so different, many of the circumstances are not, read this book and find ways to thrive and love after such a hurtful experience.
In summarizing today’s episode of “Healing From Within” we have discussed how to understand the factors leading up to an affair and the often legal consequences of that event as well as to find essential information to deal with your emotions, understand the various MANscripts that are used to explore how and why it all happened, and to learn to let go of the anger sadness and loss so one can move on to a new chapter in self-fulfillment and find a way to trust oneself and the possibilities for love in the future. Nothing we learn just happens randomly…there are fears and traumas within one’s psyche and infidelity like any other choice comes from within a story that never resolved itself from a past wound or betrayal that we may have witnessed as a child. Some even think that if there was infidelity in family members, there might be a genetic predisposition to that happening, or if society or friends and family deem it desirable to participate in having affairs then it might be acceptable. There are many unresolved emotions and complications in relationships that might make people doubt themselves or others and often modern day society has encouraged immediate gratification and exploration of all possibilities for physical comfort and delight. Love is a complicated emotion and often when people do make a poor choice they are not thinking of long term complications.
Julia and Jacqui wrote, If you start questioning him he may become angry, accusing you of not trusting him. When faced with this, we often doubt our own instincts and begin to question ourselves. Remember, attacking you is the best line of his defense. The most important thing is to keep yourself safe. By this, we mean if you feel at all scared or threatened by your partner’s behavior, you must remove yourself from the situation immediately and call someone to support you. His anger is with himself and there are instances when women have been attacked by men to deflect from their own guilt. In the United States, over half of the killings of American women are related to intimate partner violence, with the vast majority of the victims dying at the hands of a current or former romantic partner, according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2017. Some men go to the other extreme and are so consumed with guilt they start buying you flowers and gifts—trying almost too hard. Being overly nice to throw you off the scent is another tell-tale sign, although it is not as common as anger.”
Of course, women are involved in affairs as well and their men will get hurt too, and might show tell-tale signs as well, but whoever has gotten themselves into this position it is clear that it will have to be addressed and often therapy and support groups are required and many times the marriage will end. These are just the facts.
We would have you know that even after the drama and calamity, the sadness and anger, and the possible break up of the marriage, most people go on to understand why it happened and move past blame and anger to find a deeper self-love, and that allows for necessary acceptance and change without shame regret and continued bitterness which can limit the ability of the soul to heal.
I am Sheryl Glick host of Healing From Within and invite you to visit my website www.sherylglick.com to read about and listen to authors in the metaphysical science spiritual education medical psychology and arts and music fields as they seek to understand the human and divine condition and learn greater compassion for self and others. Shows may also be heard on www.webtalkradio.net and www.dreamvisions7radio.com