There are very few people who have not been touched by the pain and heartache of infidelity.
If you are one of the lucky few who have never been cheated on, you are truly blessed. It’s wonderful to live in a world of trust, faith and confidence that the person you are intimate with is—and only wants to be—with you.
But for those of us who have had the unfortunate and often life-changing experience of being cheated on—and then having to go through the process of grieving, understanding what happened and learning to trust again—it’s important to give ourselves time to go through all of the different stages, at our own pace, in whatever messy and ugly form it takes.
And it will be messy and ugly.
But you’ll get through it.
Stage 1: Shock. Typically, we can’t wrap our heads around the fact that the person we’ve loved and trusted most in this world has betrayed us. We literally can’t comprehend that it’s happening to us.
“This sh*t happens to other people, but not to me!”
It happens in those slickly produced ABC dramas, like Betrayed—it happens to the celebrities on the cover of Us Weekly.
But never to us, right?
We may spend days—weeks—in a complete daze. We can’t eat. We can’t sleep. We can’t focus on what people are saying. We can’t even breathe. Taking air into our lungs is actually physically painful. We wonder 10 times a day if we will ever wake up again feeling normal or be able to keep down a solid meal.
Nothing makes sense. Nothing.