Over the week, I will be posting about my daily life as a Divorce Coach. I will be blogging every day until Friday.
I see a client who has just found out about her husbands affair. Her world has come crashing down and she doesn’t have a clue whether she wants to make her marriage work, whether she can trust her husband again or whether he is going to leave her for the person he has been having an affair with.
She looks small, broken and afraid when she sits down in my coaching room. She can’t talk for crying; when she is ready, she tells me about her marriage, her children, how she found out about the affair (social media has a lot to answer for) and the fallout that has arisen since.
She tells me that she can’t eat, sleep and feels like she is in a dream. Finding out about your partners affair is absolutely dreadful, I know from first hand experience how difficult it is to accept that the person you are married to has betrayed you.
Most of the session is spent listening and I take on the role of a counsellor, showing empathy and enabling her to express and make sense of her feelings.
I ask her who is supporting her at this time and she tells me that she has a close friend who has been her shoulder to cry on as well as helping out with practical things like picking the children up from school (having a support network is vital). She went on to say that she doesn’t want to tell her family just yet as she feels guilty, ashamed and feels that she has failed as both a wife and a mother.
I reassure her that these feelings are completely normal, she is in shock and disbelief which I tell her is one of the first steps to recovery after a relationship breakdown.
By the end of the session, she looks brighter, but I know she has a long way to go. I don’t push clients, sometimes they are not ready to be pushed; they need time to process and make sense of what has happened and this can take time. There is no limit to healing, but seeing a divorce coach can speed up the process.
I tell her to give herself time, be kind to herself and accept support from others. Things will definitely change before our next session. Some couples do get over an affair and become closer and stronger, others find the betrayal too much and end up separating. After a betrayal, the balance of power can shift, you change as people, it can be the catalyst for great change and end in both of you re-evaluating your life.