If you're complaining about your marriage to a sympathetic ear, you don't need a degree in psychology to know that the implicit message in these conversations is, "I'm unhappily married. Want to fool around?"
Cheating was a set of choices I made to get things I wanted -- sex, ego strokes, flattery. I didn't consider your welfare. I was staggeringly selfish. I risked your health. I risked our children's home life. All because I wanted a bit of strange.
People blurt out really stupid things sometimes. And getting hit with the news that a friend's significant other is cheating is exactly the kind of thing that can prompt you to say something that you'll regret.
No matter what resolution you decide, to repair the relationship or to end the relationship, at some point in time, the acceptance process comes into play. How can you accept that your life has been turned upside-down?
From the moment both spouses speak out the D-word openly, the timer starts to run. During the first days there will be a moment of stress, pain and panic, but in most cases both spouses often realize that breaking up in a positive way should be their joint goal.
If someone wants to engage in an affair, or leave you for an affair partner, no amount of rational argument is going to sway them otherwise. Don't hector, beg, or argue. Just remove yourself from the equation.
Knowing how minor children may feel when one of their parents cheats on the other, shouldn't such things be taken into consideration when parents, their professionals, or judges design parenting plans?
The Petraeus and Broadwell families can take comfort in one thing: this too shall pass. When it does, they will be alone to face days that most who have experienced them call the toughest time of their lives.