My Husband Cheated. He Doesn’t Admit Anything Unless He’s Caught. What Do I Do?

My Husband Cheated. He Doesn’t Admit Anything Unless He’s Caught. What Do I Do? July 16, 2019

This is part of an ongoing Q&A series on “Counseling For Infidelity.” If your marriage has been rocked by an affair, if your spouse cheated, please attend our free webinar for Patheos readers, provided by Your Family Expert.

Q: My husband cheated. He only admitted to an affair after I found out the truth. He never came clean with me. He shows with his actions that he is sorry, but he doesn’t ever want to talk about the past. I’m so confused. He isn’t opening to counseling and doesn’t believe it will help. What should I say to him?

A: Your husband is ashamed, it sounds like, and wants this to stay in the past. Doesn’t want counseling. Doesn’t believe it will help. Why doesn’t he believe it will help? Has he had bad counseling before? 

What I would say to him, if I were in your shoes, is I love you. I understand you’re ashamed. I understand you want to leave this in the past. With all due respect, you don’t get to set the terms. You don’t get to break me and then tell me what I do or don’t need to heal. When you cheated, you were putting your needs before mine and when you refuse infidelity marriage counseling or you refuse to get help, you’re putting your needs before mine again.

“And I don’t think that’s what you want to be doing. I believe you really want us to thrive and you want us to be okay and I, and I do believe that you care about me, but if I know in my heart that we need counseling to get through this and you’re saying, no we don’t do you see that’s putting your knees before mine and I as the person who was hurt, I get to establish the terms because I’m the one who knows what I need to heal and what I need to trust you again and I know you want to leave this in the past. This is the only way to leave it in the past is not to jump over it but to go through it, work through it, and overcome it.”

God bless you. I know He can make all things new, including your marriage (see Revelation 21:5). A good infidelity therapist, at Your Family Expert or elsewhere, can help.

About Jonathan Decker, LMFT
Jonathan Decker is a licensed marriage and family therapist and clinical director of Your Family Expert, offering online relationship courses and counseling. He specializes in Bible-based interfaith counseling, healing from infidelity, strengthening marriages, and blended families. You can read more about the author here.
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