The affair was over, her husband was back home, Hafsat had said, she had forgiven him for straying and all was seemingly well with their family. But every day, Hafsat fumed; when he touched her in their bedroom, seeking sex; as he brushed his teeth beside her inside their bathroom, as she served him, his breakfast.
She boiled and wondered what she had done to deserve being treated like that. Her husband had spent her hard earned money on a mistress, he had rented an apartment for the lady in a choice area of town, he bought her a car and even went on vacation with her. All the while, she was working for more money, spreading the left over to cover basic needs of the family and lying to their kids that, “daddy had gone on a business trip.”
It was a painful pill to swallow but one she had taken but she could not forget. Never forget that her husband had an affair with a girl old enough to be his baby sister. He spent family resources on a girl! Gosh! Hafsat accepted his apologies, after he came home, having been dumped by his mistress. She found someone else with more money or apparently, found out that he did not own much really.
With family members pleading, her mother coercing her into saying, she had forgiven him. Of course, she told them what they wanted to hear but it was not what was in her mind. There were people she had no business with. She had never gone to meet them for anything or asked them to intervene in her marriage. She kept her business personal and the fact they were called in to the matter incensed her like nothing else. Everyone knew what had happened.
Hafsat wanted to deal with him, she wanted to make him feel a fraction of the pain, he had put her through. Eventually, she went burst. It was as though a rampage happened in their bedroom; she locked them in and gave him a piece of her mind, while destroying most of their furniture. She was out of control. Any time, her husband tried to calm her, it only escalated her temper. In the end, he stayed out of harm’s way and mouthed his apologies.
Affairs are a very painful reality in relationships. They happen and there are no guarantees that you or your partner will not cheat. Although, a healthy and happy relationship is a helpful deterrent of affairs, it is still not a guarantee that it will not happen.
There are many ways of dealing with an affair, going the anger and revenge route like Hafsat is one and the good thing from that is, it allowed her to vent her anger and pain. It will lessen her pain and the hardness of her heart but it will hardly heal her.
Immediately, an affair is discovered, it should be stopped, broken off or whatever word is there to describe a parting of ways between the unfaithful partner and the third party.
After which, the much needed conversation of what led to it should take place. But it would not matter, if there was no commitment on the part of both partners prior the affair to stay together.
This is a tough call, because, it requires looking at the life of the couple, their life style, what was lacking, what had changed, what each person wanted and did not get. It is a whole lots of questions and seeking out, that needs to be done to get to the root cause of the straying.
If both parties are willing to work on the relationship, then the erring partner needs to become transparent with all movements, calls, social media account details, and mails. Even any potential meeting with the third party should be put on the table. This is necessary to rebuild trust in the relationship.
All these will not happen in a day or weeks, it may take months or even longer but if both parties are still interested in being together, then they have to work it out.
In the long run, the unfaithful partner needs to work out for themselves how their former behaviour led to having an affair and resolve to change. As a couple, you can make changes to your lifestyle and ensure it supports a faithful relationship in the future.
There is even more need for each partner to be open and honest about their wants and needs. A crisis like this can also make you confront complex issues like conventional expectations of how affairs should be handled by both men and women and that can heat things up, if care is not taken. It is possible to create a new, stronger relationship in the wake of an affair, but the cost can be very high.
To ensure there is no repeat performance, permanent barriers can be created, like a couple’s constitution that you both signed aside from your marriage certificate. Even so, an affair does not always mean the end of your relationship. With hard work, commitment and patience, it may be possible to come through this crisis changed, but also stronger.
The important part of the dealing with the aftermath of an affair is to understand why the affair happened, rather than run away from the reasons and the consequences too. Whether you stay together or part, it’s crucial to gather some insights into what went wrong. If you remain together, you will have a deeper understanding of yourselves. If you part, you will know that you had the courage to face the truth, and will be better prepared for future relationships.