You are not to blame
If you are married to someone who has damaged your trust through infidelity, pornography usage or sexual addiction, you were betrayed at the deepest level possible. Your entire life changed when you found out about his secret life. He’s not the man you thought he was, and your marriage was not what you thought it would be.
It’s normal and valid for you to feel hurt, anger, distrust, fear, confusion, love and a myriad of other emotions that come from this trauma. I have counseled thousands of women who have experienced this betrayal. As a psychologist and therapist, I have seen the convulsions, screams and uncontrollable sobbing of betrayed wives after hearing about their husband’s transgressions. Your view of trust has completely shifted.
The first and most important thing you must hear and accept in your heart is that this betrayal is NOT YOUR FAULT! His decision to lust, lie and cheat was 100% his choice and responsibility. His behavior is not because of your age, beauty, weight, proportions, wrinkles or anything about your personality or weaknesses.
Through my three decades of experience counseling couples, I see that in most circumstances, the adulterer’s lusting, cheating and addictive behaviors were prominent before your marriage and even before he met you. His behavior often goes back to adolescent cracks of lust, pornography, possible abuse or other issues. You have nothing to do with the choices that he made. James 1:15 makes it clear that his own desires have led to his sin.
In 2 Samuel 12:1-7, the prophet Nathan confronts King David after he commits adultery with Bathsheba. Nathan tells the story of a rich man taking the only sheep of a poor man. Nathan is clear with David in verse 7 when he says, “You are the man!”
The Lord held David 100% accountable for his choices. God didn’t blame David’s other wives or his past for the decisions he made. In this same manner, the Lord holds your husband 100% responsible for his choices, so you should as well.
If you blame yourself, you will be trying to “solve” a problem that did not cause his behavior. He might initially blame you because he is immature, double-minded and very emotional. However, do not take the bait.
I want to be clear that you did not cause this. I’m not saying you are perfect or that you have never made mistakes because we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). Regardless of your flaws, he is responsible for his choice. He could have chosen counseling, received support, or talked to a pastor to resolve those internal desires or lustful thoughts before he decided to act out or betray your trust.
You are not responsible for his choice. However, note that this trauma has occurred in your life. You must take steps toward your healing and walk with the Lord through this valley of betrayal. God states in his Word that He cares for us and He will strengthen us and help us.
Right now, I want you to say these words out loud: “I am not to blame for my husband’s choices.”