(PRWEB) May 03, 2012
Columnist Elizabeth Bernstein says in the Wall Street Journal that whether or not a couple stays together after an affair depend on several factors: how long affair lasted, how it was discovered, and how healthy the marriage was before the affair (http://on.wsj.com/K4z0u4).
Relationship therapist Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil disagrees. She has a high success rate of people who stay together regardless of these factors: "I see couples where one person has been having an affair for 15 years, or two months, it doesn't matter in terms of the devastation of the outcome. When it comes to how an affair was discovered, most people are going to lie and the other person will somehow find out about it. Lastly, a marriage where one or both partners enter into infidelity isn't healthy to begin with, or the person wouldn't have an affair!"
Instead, Dr. Bonnie says she believes people stay together because of a "thread of love," a commitment to working things out. "How deep is the couple's love in spite of what happened? How willing are they to make changes? These are the things that help determine whether or not the marriage will break up," she says. She says that couples must look beneath the affair and untangle what is at the root of the infidelity. They can then see it as a cry for help, and begin to connect in a way they wouldn't have if the affair hadn't happened.
Before this "brush with death," as Dr. Bonnie refers to infidelity in her book Make Up Don't Break Up, most couples are disconnected and facing a host of problems, that's why they have affairs. "Couples who use this brush with death as a springboard to connect from the disconnection prior to the affair are willing to do the work required to put a marriage back together," she says.
Dr. Bonnie teaches skills and tools for couples to use in this situation so they can manage their relationship on their own. It starts with looking at the other person with gratitude and appreciation for each other after what they went through, in order to find their way back to each other again. She helps couples re-create the sizzle and spark they had when they first fell in love - "the glue when the relationship is new" - and she encourages couples to have an affair -- with their own partner!
To see Dr. Bonnie talking more about cheating, watch her video here: http://youtu.be/UWFriVLUQDg Her book, Adultery the Forgivable Sin, was made into a Lifetime original movie starring Kate Jackson, and Dr. Bonnie was featured in the documentary Unfaithful on Discovery Health and the Oprah Winfrey Network.