1. Acknowledge, don’t hide, the pain about being betrayed. Do you minimize your hurt feelings, considering them a sign of weakness? Do you refuse to talk about them with close friends or family because you do not want to burden them? Are you afraid of being consumed by the feelings if you acknowledge them?
2. Don’t be impatient with yourself because of the intensity of your reactions. Do you consider yourself irreparably damaged because of what you have experienced and how you have reacted? Are you afraid you will never get over the infidelity? Do you feel condemned to live in despair and loneliness?
3. Be gentle with yourself as you work on your recovery. Are you a demanding and impatient person, especially with yourself? Are you angry with yourself for allowing yourself to be victimized? Do you express that anger through your impatience with yourself?
4. Don’t rush the healing process. Do you tend to look for quick fixes to problems in your life? Are you impatient to get over the pain? Do you believe that hard work alone can overcome any obstacle?
5. Take time for yourself and make your recovery a priority. Do you feel guilty taking time for and indulging yourself? Does it seem selfish to you to make yourself a priority? Do you believe you are neglecting others by caring for yourself?
6. Expect your recovery to take time. Are you impatient about recovery because you underestimate the harm you have experienced at being betrayed? Do you see your reaction as normal in light of the trauma you experienced? Do you consider it a waste of time to work at your own recovery?
7. Allow others to help you. Are you afraid of burdening others with your problems? Do you consider it a sign of weakness to ask for help? Do you really believe you are worth the care and assistance of others? Are you afraid to trust others because your partner showed himself to be untrustworthy?
8. Open your mind and heart to understand yourself and your partner. Do you lack confidence in your ability to understand yourself and others in light of the deception you experienced? Are you afraid to trust yourself, and your perceptions and judgments?
9. Pay attention to your longings for wholeness. Were you satisfied with your life before the affair? Did you take the good things in your life for granted? Did you ignore what was missing in your life?
From the book TRANSCENDING POST-INFIDELITY STRESS DISORDER: THE SIX STAGES OF HEALING by Dennis Ortman © 2009, published by Celestial Arts/Ten Speed, an imprint of The Crown Publishing Group.
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