Infidelity can take many forms and is a very couple specific experience. There are sexual, emotional, and even object affairs, and what qualifies as infidelity depends on the faithful spouse’s interpretation. Interpretation is a key aspect of healing after infidelity, empathetically acknowledging how both you and your partner’s roles lead your relationship to its current standing. The harmed spouse can be quick to jump to a complete disregard for what led their partner to cheat, but to rebuild, recover, and stabilize a relationship, each perspective needs to be understood.
Sexual affairs are the most widely known, but emotional affairs can be just as damaging, if not more, to the stability and trust within a relationship. Emotional affairs occur when one partner seeks out the bonding intimacy from another partner that is meant to be obtained, and at the expense of, the faithful partner. This can occur online, in-person, at work, and even become a subconscious interaction with another individual outside of the relationship. There is often a reoccurrence of this deceptive behavior, in which a partner repeatedly seeks outside support (sexually, emotionally, etc.). This situation involves a more complex digging into the roots of the reasons behind such a long-term commitment to infidelity.