Emotional Affairs: What They Are, How to Heal

What are emotional affairs? What can you do if your partner is suspected of having one?

By getting tips from various therapists about emotional affairs, Brittany Wong, HuffPost, compiled “seven signs your partner may be on the verge of emotional infidelity”:

  1. There’s something off in their physical and online encounters with the other person…
  2. They seem physically distant from you…
  3. They become obsessive with their phone…
  4. They say they’re “just friends…”
  5. They start to talk about your relationship in less certain terms…

  6. They don’t want to talk about the other person…
  7. You find out that they’ve told the other person a lot about your relationship…

Special note about number four. The point is, people in general don’t refer to their actual “just friends” as “just friends”—they’re your “friends.”

Dr. Shirley P. Glass (1936-2003) emphasized this in her book NOT “Just Friends,” which is about the gamut of unfaithful behaviors, including emotional affairs.

Selected quotes from NOT “Just Friends” that pertain to the effects of affairs (of any type, actually):

Unfaithful persons often say they are protecting their partners from pain, but they are really protecting themselves from exposure so they can continue to live the double life.

If the involved spouse protects the identity of the lover or the nature of the relationship, then the betrayed spouse is the outsider in an extramarital triangle. Sharing the details is an act of positive demolition. The involved spouse dismantles the structure that kept the injured spouse outside in the cold and replaces deceit with hope.

Therefore, no matter how hard you may have worked to save the marriage, if your partner was unwilling to end an affair in which there was a deep emotional involvement, you were fighting an uphill battle.

Dr. Reena Becerra offers the following tips about healing after your partner’s emotional affair. Click on this link for expanded details.

  1. Don’t get stuck in a self-blame cycle.
  2. Understand to heal, you must feel.
  3. Work with your anger and communicate with intention.
  4. Invest in the relationship while allowing it to take time.
  5. Surround yourself with friends.
  6. Write about it.
  7. Seek help.

One thought on “Emotional Affairs: What They Are, How to Heal

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