In a recent video by Lisa Arends on her YouTubeChannel, the wellness coach, teacher, and author of “Lessons From the End of a Marriage: A ‘How to Thrive’ Guide After Divorce” digs deep into the aftermath and effects of cheating.
Speaking candidly from personal experience, Arends recounts the end of her own 16-year marriage, which was ultimately beset by an unfaithful partner. While Arends acknowledges that “betrayal, at its core, it somebody going against what they promised you,” she also offers a more nuanced perspective on infidelity, suggesting it is a “kind of theft.”
“Infidelity steals your memories” according to Arends. And her insight and honesty in the wake of her own struggles in an unfaithful marriage certainly rings true.
After almost two decades of shared and special moments, her husband’s infidelity not only undermined the perceived stability of their relationship, it also “tainted” the memories that give so much of marriage its meaning.
The emotions engendered by infidelity are obvious — the anger, the sadness, and the regret. But there’s more under the surface. In an incredibly raw and relatable first-hand account, Arends opens up about the uncertainty and doubt sown by cheating, revealing the reality that “precious memories will never again be so precious.”
Ultimately Arends helps us understand that infidelity isn’t about sex and it isn’t simply resolved with forgiveness or divorce. Those are choices one makes in the wake of infidelity. But in her video, which works as a sort of confessional, she exposes the many emotional levels involved in infidelity.
Infidelity takes your innocence and your inclination and willingness to trust people, whether they be a spouse, or even a stranger. Infidelity robs you of the clarity of your conviction, causes you to question others’ motivations, and significantly, it steals your dreams and your future. All of the hopes and plans that a couple shares in a marriage are made meaningless by infidelity, and those long-term consequences inform live on even after the dissolution of a marriage.
But in posting this video, Lisa Arends has done more than share her story. She has given the victims of infidelity a new clarity and understanding of the pain of an extra-marital affair. She has given viewers a kind of key to unlocking complicated emotions, a well as an example to those in the midst of the affects that there is light at the end of the tunnel — and salvation in valuing yourself.
Follow Terry Gaspard on Twitter, Facebook, and movingpastdivorce.com. Her book Daughters of Divorce: Overcome the Legacy of Your Parents’ Breakup and Enjoy a Happy, Long-Lasting Relationship is available on her website.
Terry’s forthcoming book, The Remarriage Manual: How to Make Everything Work Better the Second Time Around, will be published by Sounds True in February of 2020.