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Do you forgive an Affair?

9 Votes | Average: 3.33 out of 59 Votes | Average: 3.33 out of 59 Votes | Average: 3.33 out of 59 Votes | Average: 3.33 out of 59 Votes | Average: 3.33 out of 5 (9 votes, average: 3.33 out of 5)
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Forgive an affairIt depends on various factors. Firstly, will you be able to forgive and forget. Secondly, will the aberrant abstain from doing such deeds in future? Thirdly, will you as a victim be able to prevent withholding a grudge and resume normal marriage?

It is a complex situation further precipitated when children are involved. Assess what stage is the marriage in? How far the relationship is with either spouse or mistress? Affairs cannot be segregated as absolute black and white. There are shades of gray which need consideration.

This does not mean that an affair is permitted. “An affair is an aberration to normal behavior if we choose to exercise self control.” exclaims Latha Nithyanand, clinical psychologist and counselor. She explains that as long as we follow baser instincts then we use the mating needs to have an affair. Even in animals, sex is only a means of procreation. Human beings are the only species that employ sex for pleasure. Given such, “it is imperative that we use our discretion.” says Latha.

What starts as harmless flirting turns to a fling and finally becomes an affair. Latha believes that having an affair is actually shirking of responsibility and escapist in nature. “Such relationships cannot be expected to sustain in the long run.” says she.

One of the main reasons for a marriage to end in an affair is that people get married without understanding importance of it and the enormity of responsibility associated with marriage.

Therefore, to forgive an affair – Latha explains, on a moral stance the answer would be `No’ because it is a breach of trust. “It will be tough to learn to let go and carry on for the innocent party who suffers the most in a marriage.” 

Since it is a `shades of gray’ situation, there are other aspects to be noted - like when children are involved. Latha recounts, “As a husband he might have failed but if he was an excellent father, then the children will suffer the most in a divorce. They might not be able to forgive the mother for walking out of the marriage despite all the valid reasons.” Similarly for the husband whose wife has strayed? For the sake of the children the marriage might be continued.

Or it could be a case of financial dependence. After being dependant on the husband for many years, it could be difficult for the wife to get out of the marriage. So, financial dependency also makes a wife stay in the marriage.

For a childless couple, divorce becomes so much easier in case of an affair. However, there could be a strong emotional dependency between the couple and chances are more for the errant spouse to come into the fold.

A person who has strayed once and not got caught might continue to have affairs in the future. Alternatively, a spouse caught in the act might hesitate to do so again for fear of jeopardizing the marriage.

Latha clearly states, “Marriage cannot be sustained by either withholding oneself or carrying a grudge. If you have decided to continue with the marriage then it is imperative to learn to forgive and forget completely and carry on forward. It is a difficult task but conscious effort has to be made to go onward, never looking back.”

Finally it boils down to trust, understanding and confidence that you have in your spouse. Be it love or arranged marriages there is a fifty percent chance for either spouse to stray. “Ultimately it is the moral code of the individuals that matters to make a marriage successful.” concludes Latha.

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