Victoria’s heart hurt. She’d just received
news, a few days before, that the marriage of her best friend, Callie, had
unexpectedly hit a breaking point. Although they were a part of her church
family, few people really knew what was going on.
When she walked in to teach her Sunday school
class, she could see the pain on the faces of Callie’s two youngest children.
She silently prayed, “Lord, what can I do?”
She stepped up and greeted the kids in a different way. She said, “I am sad
today. And it’s okay to be sad. Lots of times we put on a smile for everyone to
see on the outside, but inside we hurt. You wouldn’t know that I was sad today,
except that I told you.”
She then asked the children for a hug. “When our hearts hurt, we can share the love
that God puts in our hearts with one another, and it helps us feel better.
Would anyone want to give me a hug, today?” Immediately all of the children
lined up. As she hugged each child, some of them admitted to her that they
needed a hug too, including Callie’s children.
The atmosphere in the room changed. Her simple demonstration of honesty and
love had turned things around for her entire classroom. She encouraged her
children to ask for a hug from others if they felt they needed one during the
Today’s One Thing
Demonstrate God’s love to someone in a special
way today. If you’re not sure how, ask God to show you. There are times in our
lives where our authenticity can open the door for our friends or family to
share with us things they may be facing or even encourage them to know that no
one has a perfect life. We are all struggling together and can lean on one
another and God for help in our time of need!
HOW TO RECOVER FROM BETRAYAL (NOT JUST LOVE BETRAYAL, BUT BETRAYAL OF ALL KINDS)
Betrayal is incredibly painful. It’s hard to heal
and move on. If you’re searching for how to recover from betrayal – in a
realistic way – read on.
endured a huge betrayal from an unlikely place – a younger woman whom
I was close friends with and mentored for many years. When we first met, she
was trying to write and sell a book – to no avail.
I gave her an idea for a book – then helped her to write the
proposal – asking for no upfront money – just a small 10% back
end commission – should the book sell. She enthusiastically
agreed – thanking me profusely for not charging her upfront for my time. She
had a lawyer draw up papers – which we each signed.
shock, soon after I got her the highly successful book deal
she’d always dreamed about, she turned into an “All About Eve” kind of character –
displaying low-character behavior – in a variety of fibbing,
royalty-hiding and contract-breaking ways.
point, I’ll stop sharing specific details of the story – because my
purpose for this essay is not to complain! Quite the
opposite! I want to share my path to recovery. I
want to help others who are also suffering from a betrayal – either from a
friend, a relative, a spouse, a love partner, a colleague, a boss, a neighbor.
betrayal can destroy so many varied kinds of relationships – and turn
one’s view of the world topsy turvy.
of my main upside-down effects after this woman’s betrayal:
myself less eager to socialize. In particular, I felt nervous to open
my heart to new friendships – and thereby to new pain. I felt hesitant to help
others with books and projects. I worried they too might take advantage.
Plus I did not want to go any place I might see this betrayer: events, cafes,
gyms, yoga studios, social clubs. All my usual haunts now felt haunted by
a potential sighting of her.
initial solution to recover from betrayal:
myself I needed to take some time alone to heal and gain insight. So
I chose to stay in my home more, socialize less. It was easy to do. I’d
just become pregnant. Then I became a mom. In fact, at the time I thought
I was going into a healthful “cocoon” – a less social, nesting period.
it turned out, I was entering a “cave.”
COCOON is a quiet, comfortable place you go to evolve into a
more beautiful you. It’s a safe haven to experiment with new, uplifting
thought patterns. When you emerge, you feel in your full, majestic
power – flying higher and further than before.
A CAVE is a quiet, uncomfortable place you go
to think and brood – to hibernate. Instead of spending time thinking
grand thoughts, you growl. You view the world as cold and unsafe.
How did I finally realize I was in a cave not a cocoon?
thought about leaving my home to socialize, I found myself feeling heavy in the
fact, if you ever want to know if you’re in a cocoon or a cave – check in to
feel the weight of your heart when you think about leaving your home.
feel light in the heart, you’re telling yourself “Butterfly Stories” about the
world – viewing life as a beautiful, safe haven to spread your wings.
telling myself “Bear Stories.” I was even doing “Bear Math.”
person = 1 untrustworthy person
person = infinite untrustworthy people
Psychologists have a term for this “Bear Lens On The World.” They call
it “Permanent and Pervasive Thinking.” It’s when you tell yourself stories
which make you feel like one negative incident has permanent, pervasive,
lifelong negative effects.
my case, these were some of my permanent and pervasive stories:
can’t trust anyone.”
an idiot for being suckered!”
shouldn’t help people any more – they just take advantage.”
1 bad thing means I need to keep my heart safely stored in a betrayal-proof
I’m not proud of these thoughts. They are grizzly “Bear
Thoughts.” And they were keeping my life limited, dark, dank – and making
me feel batty – all signs I was in a cave – not a cocoon!
a cave is a place you go to shrink your life – a prison for the soul.
cocoon is where you go to grow your life – an ashram for the soul.
me a while to look around and realize I was in a cave. I just knew my heart
felt heavier when I thought about going outside to play with others. So I
decided to journal about my heavy heart. That’s when I realized I was telling
myself painful permanent/pervasive stories – triggered by this friend’s
you can’t change your past, you can control the story you tell about it –
and thereby change the effects your past has upon your future.
decided the time had come to rewrite my story so it was a happier one.
In my journal, I began by writing
down all my permanent/pervasive thoughts. Next to each, I wrote how
non-permanent/non-pervasive the situation truly was!
should simply be making me anti-jerks. I realized I
should even look upon this betrayal with a bit of gratitude – because
it was a powerful reminder to honor my intuition
more -and stop being color blind to red flags
– no matter if they show up as smaller red hankees.
be told, looking back, there were times I felt this woman’s energy to be pushy
in an uncomfortable, aggressive way.)
event was not meant to stop me from trusting. It was meant to stop me from
ignoring my gut – and thereby keep me safe from falling for even
bigger business betrayals down the road.
some people do suck. But not ALL people! Plus, I should never allow someone who
sucks to suck all the joy out of my day – and my life!
it’s bad when someone’s a jerk. But things could be worst. I could be the
person who’s doing sucky, low-character things.
am truly proud of NOT being someone who could behave so badly. Indeed I feel
compassion for my betrayer. She is stuck living with herself – while I get
to move on and away.
could I move on and away, when I was still
holding onto resentment? After all, anybody who angers me is actually
controlling me – which means they are still an active (and negative) presence
in my life. If I wanted to be happy, I needed “To Pull An Elsa” –
and “Let it go”!
“I’m an idiot for being suckered!”
re-read this permanent/pervasive thought, I realized I was displaying the
classic case of “blaming the victim.”
that I enjoyed using the word “victim.” In fact, I’ll be writing more
about the word “victim” at the bottom of this essay!)
calling myself “an idiot” is showing anger and shame at myself – rather than
focusing the anger and shame where it more rightfully belongs – on my betrayer!
re-wrote my word choice from “I am an idiot” to “I am a wronged person.”
reason I was wronged did not truly have to do with intelligence.
simply didn’t see the betrayal coming, because I never would have done such a
thing. My heart is awake, good, active. My heart values loyalty, strong
character and sticking to commitments. Not just for legal reasons – but moral
remembered a quote I’d heard: “Fools take a knife and stab people
in the back. The wise take a knife, cut the cord and free themselves from the
decided that since I very much value the trait of being a non-idiot –
that I should do this wise choice – cut the emotional cord – and set
myself free as a butterfly leaving a cocoon! The best way to cut the
cord? Forgiveness. Yes, even if the betrayer was not sorry, forgiveness was
could I forgive? I needed to keep reminding myself: Forgiveness doesn’t excuse my betrayer’s behavior. Forgiveness
simply stops her behavior from destroying my heart!
it helped to keep in mind a great Wayne Dyer quote: “How people treat you
is their karma. How you react is yours.”
1 bad thing means I need to permanently keep my heart safely stored in a
betrayal-proof Tupperwear container.”
first re-read this particular pervasive/permanent story, I chuckled. I
wondered: “Why should I punish myself for the crime this
woman committed? Isn’t that misplaced punishment?” And
this new choice (to avoid letting love into my life) was very much a
all, love is good stuff! I love love!
whenever I push friends and/or potential-new-friends away, it’s as if I’m
punishing these people for the sins of my betrayer!
again I was reminded of the lessons I should be
learning: “Pay attention to the energy I feel around
people. Listen to my gut!”
be told, it wasn’t my trust in other people that was being shaken up by this
betrayal. It was my trust in myself
needed to re-gain my trust in my abilities to see people clearly! So I gave
myself another writing assignment: Jot down all the times I’ve trusted my
life choices – and I was correct. Write about all the awesome, trust-worthy,
loving friends I’ve chosen to be in my life – so I’m reminded that I
have a “good internal picker” and that love is indeed good stuff.
“I shouldn’t help people any more – they just take advantage.”
re-read this permanent/pervasive thought, I also saw it as a form of self-punishment
– because I love helping people! I shouldn’t become less of me because
this woman showed low character values.
should become even more aware of how important strong character values are to
me – and embrace them even more fully.
gave myself another writing assignment: Write down a list of people
I’ve helped with creative projects – and stay reminded how most people
do NOT take advantage, fib and break contracts.
wrote about how good it always feels to help and support people – a win/win –
for both the giver and receiver!
If you’re presently recovering from a betrayal, I encourage
you to watch out for thinking painful, permanent and pervasive thoughts.
refuse to become a member of that club called “People Suck.” Please refuse
to distribute any of that club’s untrue literature.
I invite you to join me in a club called “You Live. You Learn. Life Gets
Better. Yes, You Can And Will Trust Again.”
we can’t always control what happens to us, we can control our response.
choose the role of victim – focusing on blame, anger, regret and resentment.
can choose the role of victor – seeking support, healing our wounds, retrieving
our power, and moving forward stronger and wiser than before.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as
I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that
you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
─ John 13:34-35
God is love. His grace,
an overflow of His love for us, is what makes God desirable to those that don’t
Sadly, we’ve all met
people who claimed to be Christians, but the outflow of their life didn’t
represent the attributes and character of God. Perhaps you’ve even sat in a
church that criticized and judged you because you didn’t conform to their
specific list of rules, definitions of what a Christian should be, or even what
a Christian should act like.
Our own negative words
and actions can push others away rather than compel them to experience the
love, grace and mercy of God. Jesus said everyone can recognize someone who
follows Him simply by the fact that they have love. True Christ followers obey
the Lord’s commandment to follow His example and love first, above all
When we demonstrate His love to others, they gain insight with a glimpse of the
grace and mercy He’s made available to them. That’s why love should go first in
all we do. That’s why our responses to everything in our relationships should
flow out of God’s love for us and for others.
Today’s One Thing
Here are four ways to
demonstrate God’s love. Set a goal to do all of these at least once today.
an act of service for someone with no strings attached.
smile to everyone you see today.
conversations away from negativity – encouraging positive topics.
How does broken trust in a marriage regrow? Growth in trust will require your spouse personally investing in change and your willingness to take relational risks. Your spouse’s growth alone will not create trust without your willingness to take a relational risk. Your willingness to take a relational risk without your spouse’s growth will not produce lasting trust.
How to Use the Ten-Stage Progression
ten stage progression below of how broken trust regrows assumes a relationship
is at its most trust-broken point. Not all marriages that experience the
betrayal of sexual sin will start at stage one.
you read through this progression, two key questions to ask are,
“Where was I at the darkest
point after learning of my spouse’s sin?” and
“Where am I now?”
ways in which trust has already begun to regrow can be a source of
encouragement for the journey ahead.
asking these two questions, make an observation, “What’s next in the
restoration of trust?” Chances are the next stage in trust restoration will not
be as close to “complete emotional and logistical reliance” as you fear.
goal for this post is to help you see that if you are currently thinking, “I
could never be at a ‘10’ of trust again,” that trust is not as
all-or-nothing as we are prone to think when we are hurt.
you will notice the stages are more descriptions than action steps. These are
not necessarily things for you to do, but ways to identify where your marriage
is in the trust restoration process and shrink the change you’re asking God to
do next. As we become less overwhelmed with what God is likely to do
next, we tend to become more cooperative with His work
are the ten stages of how broken trust regrows:
1. Require Third Party Mediation
this level of trust-brokenness, you do not feel safe (at least emotionally) to
be with your spouse without someone else present. The high end of this level
might sound like, “You can go to counseling, but I’m not going with you. I’ll
go separately and tell the counselor my side of the story.”
this stage, trust is built as you hear your spouse be honest with another
person and receive correction or instruction from that person. You still doubt
your spouse is being totally honest or would listen to you, but you begin to
see your spouse is not a total liar who is so committed to his/her lies. As
your spouse cooperates, you begin to trust your spouse vicariously through the
trust you build for the third party (often a counselor).
2. Listen and Require Validation
you are willing to talk with your spouse in a one-on-one conversation, but you
are skeptical of most everything he/she says. You don’t believe your spouse.
You believe facts. If your spouse has facts to back up what he/she says,
you will trust that much and little more.
is a tedious way to communicate, but feels necessary in order to avoid pain
greater than the inconvenience. Any statement that is not factual (i.e., future
promise, interpretation of event, expression of feeling, etc.) is viewed as
deceptive, unsafe, manipulative, or insulting. As a pattern of validated facts
emerges, you begin to trust that there is some commitment to live in reality
that exceeds your spouse’s desire for personal expediency.
3. Listen and Require Less Validation
to your spouse now feels like less work. The rate at which you are searching
for questions and processing information as you listen decreases. Giving the
“benefit of the doubt” for things you are uncertain about is still unnatural
and feels dangerous.
statement that is incomplete or slanted too positively is assumed to be
intentional deceit and creates a trust regression. As the majority of your
spouse’s statements prove to be accurate, the practical necessities of life create
an increasing reliance upon your spouse. Each time you notice this happening,
you may still feel highly cautious.
4. Rely on Spouse Functionally
separated or in the same house, you begin to “do life together again.” A
process of basic life tasks (i.e., formal or informal budgeting, scheduling,
transporting children, etc…) begins to be created or reinstituted.
level of trust within a marriage feels very much like “living as roommates.”
The dissatisfying nature of this arrangement can often discourage continued
growth (i.e., “I don’t want to stay married out of a sense of duty”), but this
discouragement should be decreased by understanding where it falls in the
process of trust restoration.
5. Share Facts
you functionally “do life” with your spouse, there is the opportunity for you
to begin to share more of you again. To this point you have been receiving
information much more than giving information.
the stage you begin the process of “giving yourself” to your spouse again. You
allow yourself to be known at a factual level. Questions from your spouse that
start with “Why” or “How come” are still met with defensiveness. During this
stage, questions that start with “Would you” become more comfortable as you
allow your spouse to influence the “facts” (i.e., schedule) of your life again.
6. Share Beliefs
you become more comfortable sharing facts with your spouse again, that
naturally leads to sharing what you think about those facts. Conversations
become more meaningful as you share more of what you like, dislike, agree with,
disagree with, and want from the events of life.
can now talk about the way you believe things “should” be without a tone of
judgment, sadness, or guilt overpowering the conversation. As you share your
beliefs, you feel more understood and appreciated. At this stage, you and your
spouse may have to relearn (or learn for the first time) how to have different
opinions or perspectives while protecting the unity of the marriage.
7. Share Feelings
until this stage, emotions have likely been “thrust at” or “shown to” more than
“shared with” your spouse. At this level of trust, you are willing to receive
support, encouragement or shared participation in your emotions.
aspect of the “one flesh” relationship is returning (Gen. 2:24). You are
beginning to experience your burden being reduced and your joys multiplied as
you share them with your spouse. The marriage is beginning to feel like a
8. Rely on Spouse Emotionally
you find yourself able to relax when he/she is away. You are able to believe
your spouse is transparent and sincere when he/she tells you about their day or
shares with you how he/she is feeling. It is now the exception to the rule when
suspicions arise within you about your spouse’s motive for saying or doing
9. Allow Spouse to Care for You
your spouse to express affection has lost the sense of “invasion” or being
“unclean.” When your spouse wants to serve you, you no longer think he/she is
doing an act of penance or cynically question what he/she will want in return
later. Your spouse’s efforts to bless you can be received as blessings rather
than being treated as riddles to be solved or dangerous weights on the “scales
of justice” that will be used to pressure you later. You can savor the
sweetness of love without bracing for a bitter aftertaste.
10. Relax and Feel Safer With Spouse than Apart
is trust restored. Your spouse’s presence has become an anchor of security
rather than a pull towards insecurity. Your spouse’s presence reduces stress in
troubling circumstances. You find yourself instinctively drawn to your spouse
when something is difficult, upsetting, or confusing. Even when he/she doesn’t
have the answer, their presence is its own form of relief and comfort.
Ultimatums and Time Tables
is intentionally no pacing guide for this trust progression. In this regard,
growing in trust requires trust. It is an act of faith not to say, “I’ll give
it three months and if we’re not at level seven, then I don’t think there’s any
hope for us.” That kind of time-pressured environment stifles the growth of
are even more ineffective. When you try to make a deal (i.e., “Unless you stop
or tell me [blank], then I am not moving to the next level of trust”)
you undermine actual trust being built (i.e., “You only did that because I made
Your goal in reading this progression is merely to gain an
understanding of where you are in the development of trust and what is next. Efforts at artificially accelerating the
process will ultimately do more harm than good.
8 RELATIONSHIP-SAVING PRINCIPLES YOU CAN START USING TONIGHT
Jay and Lori Pyatt
I’ll be honest with you. I
betrayed my wife.
I lied to her almost every night
for four straight years. I did a quick estimate and figured that I lied at
least 1,000 times to her face in those four years. I know how to destroy trust
in a relationship.
Thankfully, I learned how to
rebuild that trust.
It wasn’t easy.
It was the single hardest, worst,
and most challenging thing I’ve ever done–and I have run a marathon.
But, I did it. And here is the
really important thing: rebuilding trust is worth it.
While your relationship will
never be the same as it was, it could actually be even better.
You will heal the person you betrayed.
You can look yourself in the mirror again, knowing you are an upstanding person.
Your relationship will be stronger and more satisfying for both of you.
The years of pornography did a
lot of damage, but what I found to be even more damaging was the lies I told
and the behavior that surrounded my actions.
For quite some time, I didn’t
fully understand the damage I had done to my relationship with my spouse.
Foolishly, I thought
that just telling the truth would fix things. My thought was, “If I quit
lying, everything will be OK. I just have to be honest when she asks me
questions. She should trust me again in two or three weeks.”
This didn’t work. There is little
ground for telling the truth when you have already been lying for so long.
There isn’t a way to verify what the heck is going on. Even after I
stopped lying, my wife still didn’t feel safe, and she certainly didn’t trust
me. Stepping forward with the truth wasn’t enough to turn our relationship
I had to become radical in my
honesty. I had to put more energy into the relationship than I had previously.
I had to grow. I had to get comfortable being uncomfortable.
Like I said, rebuilding trust
challenged me more than anything I have ever done.
Can You Rebuild Trust?
My very firm answer on this is,
Not everyone chooses a
relationship over their own comfort. Not everyone wants to humble themselves in
front of the person they betrayed. Sometimes the cost to the betrayed
person exceeds the time needed to rebuild.
However, I rebuilt trust, so it
can be done. I actually help other guys and they have rebuilt trust in their
marriages as well.
There is hope for you, if you are
willing to do the work.
Are you willing to do it? Because
if you aren’t, tell the other person right now. Rip off the bandage and tell
them you don’t want the relationship any longer. Walk out the front door.
How to Rebuild Trust
Okay, if you are still with me,
then there is a chance for you to rebuild trust in a relationship wrecked with
lies, deception, or sneakiness.
To rebuild trust, I needed to
take a different approach than I had in the past. My normal behaviors and
attitudes led me to me where I was, but they would not guide me to where I
ultimately wanted to be.
In simple terms, I had to “grow
up”; I lived in an immature and uneducated state of mind. Growth is painful –
ask anyone trying to get into shape. Using new muscles and developing new
habits takes effort, focus, and a degree of suffering.
Just telling you to “grow up”
isn’t terribly helpful and probably feels a little insulting. I am okay with
the insulting part: if you need to rebuild trust, then you didn’t get here through
Here are seven
relationship-saving principles to integrate into every interaction with the
person you betrayed. You will need to work on and use each of these principles
constantly in the rebuilding process.
This principle is the building
block for all of the others that will follow. Repairing your relationship
should be a humbling experience.
In my personal definition,
humility is knowing the truth of who you are and accepting it. For me, I
frequently chose self-loathing over of humility. Self-loathing causes problems
because we want to see ourselves in a better light and might resist accepting
the truth of our actions.
Humility also means letting your
hurting spouse share their own pain without fear of judgment or being fixed.
They need you to feel their pain, because only you can heal it effectively.
To rebuild trust, I had to be
consistent. Anything I committed to do, I had to see it through. My wife lived
in fear of the uncertain ground I created by lying. When I would start
something good, only to fall quickly back into past behavior, this just
reminded her of how little she could count on me.
So, if you start something, stick
There are some pitfalls to
consistency, but you need to stay consistent or the person you betrayed will
see this as playing with their trust (and heart).
Stay consistent, or your efforts
are a waste.
To be honest, this word annoyed
me for a long time. Both my therapist and my wife kept telling me to “be proactive.”
I didn’t get it. “I think I know
what the word means, but not what it means mechanically. What am I supposed to
The answer is: take action on
your own initiative. Don’t wait for the person you betrayed to tell you what
they need. Go ask them.
Once they tell you what they
need, go do it.
4. Meeting Needs
The person you broke trust with
has specific needs. Find out what they are.
Now, go back to step three and
start meeting these needs proactively.
This is the growth process I
mentioned earlier. You will have to set your own needs aside to meet the needs
of the other person. Considering the possible alternatives, this is a small
price to pay.
Openness and honesty are two
sides of the same coin. Honesty means that if I ask you a question, you tell me
the truth. Openness means that you tell me the truth without me having to ask
the “right” question, especially in areas where trust is broken.
Rebuilding trust requires a new
level of communication with the person you betrayed.
You must talk to them about what
you are doing, plain and simple.
I am not saying, “Hey, this is a
good idea!” I am telling you that openness is a requirement. If you
aren’t willing to give the other person this much access to your life, you may
never rebuild trust.
Giving full access to the person
you betrayed will help them see your commitment to do whatever it takes to make
So, if you betrayed them through
money, give them access to the bank accounts. If you cheated in the
relationship, give them the passwords to your phone, computer, social media,
and anything else you can think of so they can determine and verify what you
are up to.
When it comes to the scariest
words in the English language, vulnerability is probably near the top; at least
it was for me.
Vulnerability is the very reason
I lied to my wife. The truth makes me vulnerable to her judgment, rejection, or
anger, all of which were justified from my behavior.
I regularly tell the guys I work
with, “The relationship you want with your wife will be purchased through your
I really think of vulnerability
as taking off the armor that I previously used to protect myself.
For me, anger was my armor. When
my wife would ask uncomfortable questions, I instantly put up a shield of
anger. This is an effective way of telling another person to shut up, but it’s
far from helpful or healthy. Anger is one way to stop the conversation, or you
might run away and shut down.
The other person really needs you
to listen to them, even though it feels purely miserable to discuss the topic
they brought up.
They also need you to connect
with the emotions of what they are going through, specifically how bad it feels
for them. This is difficult because it requires us to double-down on how rotten
it feels to hear how our unhealthy behavior impacts someone close to us.
Take responsibility for your
actions and the impact those actions had on the other person.
Then, keep taking responsibility
for those actions, especially when it feels uncomfortable.
I say that because I like to
minimize responsibility for my actions. I nearly ended my marriage trying to
salvage my image with the very person I lied to.
So, when my wife would say,
“Remember those times you lied about using porn at work?”, I responded with
something like, “I didn’t say that. I said I only looked at YouTube videos at
work.” And then she would say, “That is not what you said…”, and the breakdown
would continue until I finally confessed or re-owned my actions.
This kind of behavior makes
8. Blind Spots
Believe it or not, I am not clear
on all of my behaviors and how they impact the person I betrayed. This means
that I have blind spots – areas of my personality that I am completely unaware
of and need help to see.
Ask the person you betrayed for
help with this. This requires humility, a teachable spirit, and a willingness
Once you discover these blind
spots, start working on them, or at least own their existence. Because these
could be the very things holding you back in the relationship.
Give Them Time
These are the basics, and you
need to practice them. While you are doing this, the other person will need
time to heal and ultimately decide if it is worth staying.
I lied for four years in the last
go-round; I shouldn’t be shocked that it took almost four years to fix things,
especially since I dragged my feet on these topics and made them much more
difficult than they needed to be.
My work with men to rebuild trust
in their own relationships has shortened the recovery time to somewhere between
four and eighteen months, depending on the breakdown and situation.
Saving your relationship is far
from easy, and you will need a network of support.
It also helps to work with
someone who went through a similar experience, so use my bio below to
contact me for more information.
Because I have done this, I know
you probably can as well. Don’t lose hope; just keep practicing these
principles every day.
Let me re-share a quick story and some important life lessons
This morning, like he has every morning for the last decade,
my 86-year-old grandfather picked a fresh wild flower on his morning walk and
took it to my grandmother. This morning I decided to go with him to see her.
And as he placed the flower on her gravestone, he looked at me and said, “I
just wish I had picked her a fresh flower every morning when she was alive. She
would have loved that.”
As you can imagine, his words touched a nerve in me. I almost
immediately started thinking about everything and everyone I care about, and
what I don’t want to regret down the road. It almost felt like every aspect of
my life was flashing before my eyes. And as soon as I got home, I started
jotting down some key things that had come to mind. When I was done, I read the
list to Marc. He nodded his head all the way through to the end, and then said,
“I couldn’t agree more. I don’t think anyone wants to regret any of those
things when they’re older.” Perhaps you will also agree…
Spending too little time with the right people
Sooner or later, you just want to be around the people who
make you smile. So today, spend time with those who help you love yourself
more. And remember, the people you take for granted today may be the only ones
you need tomorrow. Never be too busy to make time for those who matter most.
Not taking action on meaningful goals
Instead of complaining about your circumstances, get busy creating new ones. You either suffer the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. Most of the time, the only difference between who you are and who you want to be is what you do. When it’s all said and done, be sure you haven’t said more than you’ve done.
3. Settling for less than you are capable of
Remember, growth and change may be painful sometimes, but
nothing in life is as painful as staying stuck where you don’t belong.
Collecting more excuses than you can count
If you really want to do something, you’ll find a way. If you
don’t, you’ll find an excuse.
Letting impatience dominate your decisions and actions
Patience is not about waiting; it’s the ability to keep a
good attitude while working hard for what you believe in.
And of course, if you’re struggling with any of these points,
know that you are not alone. Many of us
are right there with you, working hard to feel better, think more clearly, and
live a life free of headaches and heartache.
Of course, making these shifts—thinking and living
better—takes guidance and practice.
Love is beautiful and the best gift anyone can give and receive. When two people decide they are compatible enough to spend the rest of their lives together, they commit as husband and wife. They make wonderful future plans and begin their journey right after the wedding.
What to Expect:
In this journey, there are things to love and hate about each other, rules to be agreed upon, which will govern the new relationship. Although the good times will always outdo the grays, there will be moments of insecurity. Whereas most people might think infidelity is the only giant to be overcome, there are more frequent hurdles to overcome.
Committing to a marriage is more than just fidelity. It involves standing together through thick and thin. Accepting each other’s weaknesses that were not noticeable before exchanging the vows, laughing and sometimes crying together.
Reality in Marriage:
Things really change after the honeymoon. In the awakening into reality, many give up thinking there’s someone better out there for them. The fact is, nothing in life grows overnight. Marriage isn’t an exception here. Every good thing under the sky takes time to build.
There will be days your husband/wife will want to be alone. That doesn’t mean she/he has stopped loving you. Everyone needs some alone time to quiet their mind. It is healthy and necessary for a happy relationship. The best you can do is allow them the space.
Simple decisions will become almost difficult. In marriage, they say two become one. Well, this is easier said than done. It is not easy to blend two completely different personalities – not with each partner expecting the other to become more of what they fantasized.
You don’t get to choose your living room color by yourself. If you had a certain pattern on your spending habits, you cannot continue the same. Everything must meet right in the middle of both your choices. You basically do away with the freedom to make major decisions.
This is where balance is very important because if one feels over-powered, they are more than likely to seek other options. You’ve heard people having a big wedding only to divorce a few months or years later. That happens because of unrealistic expectations which couples have when they exchange their vows.
No matter how compatible you are with each other, there will definitely be days when you will experience conflicts. In such situations, you must learn how to maturely deal with disagreements before they get out of hand.
It is unrealistic to expect things to always flow smoothly. You will experience small and, sometimes, huge cracks along the pavement. If you are committed to making your marriage work, forgiveness, patience and apologies are very important.
Avoid Breaking Up:
I believe most divorces are due to arrogance of one or both partners. When nobody is willing to take responsibility for their mistake and work toward being a better person, a marriage union turns into a roller coaster of unsolved issues, leaving both partners wanting out.
To keep and grow a healthy relationship, discuss issues with your partner as they arise and watch very carefully the words coming out of your mouth. Careless use of words can break a relationship to a point of no repair. If you listen more and speak less everything will work out very well because it gives you time to think and choose what to say.
Things can get a little bit rocky during the first years of marriage. Learning to adjust into the commitment and giving away most of the freedom is the biggest culprit. With patience, however, everything starts settling down.
Saying you’re sorry is easy, but learning to apologize the right
way with these 8 essentials and 3 ways can save your love and bring both of you
Flowers and cards can say, “I’m sorry” but alone, they just don’t cut it
when you are trying to give a sincere apology to the person
When we honestly apologize to someone, it is because we want
We want to be let off the hook for whatever wrongdoing we’ve
done, or hurt we’ve caused.
And you can’t always receive the forgiveness you seek when you
simply flop down a bouquet with a generic thank-you card.
Apologies take effort, and you should take the time to formulate
a genuine apology with the following eight steps.
The 8 essential steps of apologizing to a lover
#1 Find out what exactly happened. Don’t guess what the issue
is, ask your boyfriend/girlfriend or spouse to clearly tell you what you said
or did to hurt them.
#2 If you are at fault in the situation, then you should take
responsibility for your actions.
Placing the blame elsewhere is immature and will set you back
further, possibly risking your relationship.
#3 You should prepare your apology, taking into account what
you want to say and how you want to say it. Also, you should keep the delivery
of your apology, such as the time and place, in mind.
#4 Say sorry sincerely. If you’re not genuine, the apology
will definitely fail and you will be back to square one.
#5 Be grateful and thank the person for listening to you.
Depending on what you’ve done, that could be more difficult than you
#6 Don’t assume you will be excused, and instead ask for
#7 Remember to be patient. Sometimes, accepting an apology
can take time, and your partner needs space to think about what comes next.
#8 Follow through on your word. If, in your apology, you
agree to do something, or stop doing something, make sure you honor those
Now, while these are the fundamental steps to creating a
meaningful apology, you also need to take into consideration the differing
degrees of an apology.
While a modest sorry might be acceptable if you forgot to call,
that won’t fly if you’ve done something severely untrustworthy like break an
Depending on the amount of hurt you’ve caused, and the nature of
the situation, you can apply the eight essential steps of apologizing to one of
these three different degrees of apologies.
The 3 differing degrees of apologies
#1 The Simple Apology
The first degree of apology is for those small things that
we could just let pass by without any apology at all.
But, if you truly love your partner, you will want to
acknowledge even the smallest wrongdoing, and give a short but sweet apology to
let them know you care. Your partner will be thankful that you are concerned
with all of their wants and needs, and have taken the time to address why they
For example, my boyfriend’s work involves being contracted out
to many different fundraising, and promotion events, that often run late into
the night. I attend many of these events, but when I don’t, I simply ask him to
send me a quick message so I know approximately what time he will be home.
If I don’t get a text, I wake up well into the night freaked
out, worrying that something bad has happened. My anxiety is probably the
result of losing too many people to road accidents, but it is still something I
need his help with soothing, when he is going to be working late.
One night he forgot to text me, and I sat up until 3:30 am
trying to contact him. His phone died, and he didn’t think to send a message
from a friend’s phone. I was upset, all I needed was a quick update so I didn’t
need to worry.
When he got home and I confronted him about the situation. He
was defensive at first, and didn’t seem to think he had done anything wrong.
After I explained where my anxiety came from, he offered the perfect simple
He kissed my forehead, hugged me and said, “I’m sorry that I
worried you. Next time if my battery dies I will borrow someone’s phone and let
Short and simple, and yet effective. If he had chosen to shrug
it off instead of apologizing, I most likely would have harbored secret
resentment over that. It was something little, yes, but it still mattered to
#2 The Nice Gesture Apology
No one is perfect, and sometimes, even the most organized person
can forget an important date, event, or responsibility.
I’m not a freak over birthdays but a nice good morning birthday
kiss, and tea in bed would be nice. But this year, my boyfriend forgot, and all
I got was a rushed goodbye kiss, and no mention to expect anything fun later
Thanks to social media, my boyfriend realized his blunder
mid-day and called me, and he promised to make it up to me. He organized a nice
gesture apology in the form of a dozen heart balloons *I’m not really one for
roses*, and a delicious birthday cake.
A good gesture apology doesn’t need to be too big, but it can’t
be too small either. It should be just enough to let your partner know you are
#3 The Wholehearted Apology
The third degree of apology is for those of us that have really
messed something up big time. This apology isn’t for forgetting to call, or
mixing up a birthday. It is in response to something that could cause serious
The wholehearted apology is somewhat less concerned with what
you do, or what gifts you bear, and more about what you say, and how you follow
Imagine you have done something you cannot take back, and many
consider a deal breaker – you’ve cheated on your partner.
No amounts of flowers or chocolates are going to offer your
partner the apology they need if monogamy was something you promised each other
in your relationship.
The wholehearted apology thus should begin with some deep
reflection on why you are in this situation in the first place, and where to go
next. Even if you’ve done something so big that it might mean the end of your
relationship, you still need to offer a well thought-out, wholehearted apology.
You need to think of exactly what it is that you want to say,
and how you want to say it. You need to be honest, and insightful. Don’t say
things that are typical, and what your partner is expecting. Say the truth,
even if it sucks.
Wholehearted apologies are the hardest, because sometimes, you
won’t be forgiven. The best that you can do is to offer your sincere regret,
uphold the promises you made after the apology, and try to learn from your
Apologizing in love
While these essential steps, and different degrees of “I’m
sorry” can help you out if you’ve made a mistake in love and need to apologize,
they are not fail-proof.
Not all things can be forgiven. If you’ve done something truly
menacing or cruel that could likely have a lasting impact on a relationship,
regardless if an apology is given or not, forgiveness might be hard to come by.
It’s best to steer clear of such a situation from the beginning,
and instead be honest and trustworthy throughout your relationship. Then you
won’t need to do so much apologizing.So the next time you’ve fumbled in love and want to apologize and say
sorry, in a small or big way, keep these 8 essential steps and 3 different
kinds of apologies in mind. And for your relationship’s sake, do the right