Peace After Infidelity

In Elizabeth Edwards: How I Survived John’s Affair, Elizabeth opens up about the affair between her husband and Rielle Hunter, a videographer tasked with filming J. Edwards on the campaign trail. 

A little time and a lot of distance resulted in the extramarital affair after 28 years of marriage.  Now, in this article, which is an excerpt from her book Resilience, Elizabeth is talking about the things she asked and the things that were said and how everything didn’t always add up.  She talks about a long and difficult road ahead, their attempts at reconciliation and her attempts at finding peace.

I can’t ever imagine having to make this kind of amends with my husband and I should never have to.  But if you look carefully at the words that Elizabeth chooses to characterize her marriage, you might get the impression that theirs was a strong and committed relationship before the affair.  After all, she made him promise that he would always be faithful.  Then, you are soon reminded that even strong and committed relationships are still vulnerable. 

Although I can not stand in Elizabeth Edward’s shoes, I know discovering that the man I had been committed to for 28 years had just broken such a profound covenant of faith and not so long after my great battle with the diagnosis and treatment of cancer would be, single-handedly, the most devastating thing that I could ever imagine having to deal with in my lifetime. 

Elizabeth delivered her public response to the affair with the requisite class and grace of a woman in the political circuit.  I don’t know that I would have it in me if I were in the same situation. 

In the news yesterday, Elizabeth was both heralded for her revelation and villainized for seemingly acquiescing and supporting John’s campaign efforts in spite of the affair. 

In the words of my grandmother, “if its not one damned thing, its another damned thing.”  For Elizabeth, if its not a cancer diagnosis or the discovery of her cheating spouse, its being criticized for trying to be a supportive spouse in a situation largely out of her hands.  What do we really want from this woman?  What if she has done the best she could do with the cards that were dealt?

Whether or not things work out between Elizabeth and John, Elizabeth is now in search of peace.  I certainly hope she finds it.   A quest for peace after infidelity is the best guidance I can take from her to look to if ever I were to find myself in the same or similar situation.

For Elizabeth, whether it manifest in acceptance of the affair or adamant rejection ultimately of her cheating spouse, her survival will depend on finding peace.

WEDDED BLISS WEDNESDAYS discusses marital and relationship issues. Although this is likely to be biased toward my own experiences in marriage and with relationships, I hope that you will join the discussion, ask questions, and suggest topics that you are interested in discussing. If you like what you see here, please use the orange icon at the top right to receive my content updates by email or RSS reader.

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Filed under Family, marriage, Marriage and Relationships, relationships, Wedded Bliss Wednesdays

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