You’ve suspected for a while that something is not right between you and your spouse. Maybe they were spending lots of extra hours “at work” but there was no overtime on their paycheck. Maybe they completely changed their music, hairstyle, or clothing choices to something appropriate for someone decades younger. Maybe they were chatting or texting all the time and then deleted everything so you couldn’t see it.
Whatever the reasons, you had a sneaking suspicion something wasn’t right…
- Approximately 20% of affairs last less than two months
- Approximately 50% of affairs last more than one month, but less than a year.
- The remaining 30% last more than a year
- Very few last more than four years
- Around 3% result in marriage
There are Seven Steps You Can Take to End an Affair if you have reason to believe your spouse may be unfaithful. There is no guarantee your marriage will recover, but these steps will give you the best opportunity to recover after the affair ends.
Step 2) Confront. In Matthew 18: 15-17, Jesus tells us specifically how to deal with a brother or sister who sins. What closer brother or sister do you have than your own spouse? So let’s look to God’s Word for the steps we are to take. We’re starting at verse 15:
15 If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.
16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’
17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.
So in these verses, we are told exactly the way to handle a disloyal spouse. First, according to I Cor. 13 love does believe the best, but that’s why we do step 1 and gather evidence with an open mind. We give our spouse the benefit of the doubt, we check sources, we don’t listen to gossip–but if evidence is found that is more than one witness…Matthew 18:15-17 tells us what to do.
Once the loyal spouse has some convincing evidence that it’s not just “in their mind” and there really is an emotional or physical affair, what does the verse say the next step is? The verse says to go to the disloyal spouse directly and “point out their fault” just between the two of you. Tell them to their face that you know about the affair and have evidence in a safe place that proves it’s real irrefutably. [Don’t tell them where it is or what it is necessarily, just make the statement that you know about it.] Then state right out loud that in order for the marriage to work there can not be infidelity and ask them point blank to to the right thing and end the affair.
Ending the affair means that they can never, EVER contact the other person ever again, and they agree to be accountable for their time by sharing passwords to their accounts (Facebook, all email accounts, cell phones…etc.). On the occasion there is a disloyal spouse who will fall apart upon being discovered and who has been looking for a way to get out of it but didn’t know how. Like the verse in Matthew says: “If they listen to you, you have won them over.” If this is your case, consider yourself blessed.
If that is not how it works out for you, please bear in mind that for many disloyal spouses, no amount of proof is going to get them to confess, much less end their affair. If that is the case, please post a comment or post a Prayer Request and we’ll pray for you. Thank God, He didn’t just leave us at this point, but the verses continue with the next step. And so will our post tomorrow with Step 3.
And on Tuesdays I also join this Godly Link-up:
- Back to Basics – Love Extinguishers #7 Security Neglect -AND- Save Our Marriage Saturday (affaircare.com)
- Back to Basics – Love Kindlers #7 Security Commitment ~AND~ Save Our Marriage Saturday (affaircare.com)
- The 6 Common Kinds of Affairs (affaircare.com)