The learning curve for partners finding out about their mate's deceptive sexual behaviors is steep indeed. When we stop and consider all that a partner has to learn just to survive the betrayal trauma, it's rather staggering. Then, generating all of what's necessary to move from barely surviving to finally entering more ease and well-being, however long that takes, it should be enough to invoke awe in anyone privy to that partner's experience.
As I contemplated all this today after a client's session finished here, I thought about how far this client had come and how much grace she had acquired after learning how to survive in the hostile territory that her husband's repeated betrayals and manipulations had landed her in.
I got to thinking how fortunate I was to witness her soul-deepening process. It hasn't been even a tiny bit easy for her; partners stories never are.
Mother's Day can be an especially sensitive holiday for women who have discovered their partners have chronically cheated on them. That pain becomes infinitely magnified if she is pregnant, or has young children with the man when she finds out.
The holiday itself seems correlated with being a mother in a nuclear family which, by design, usually includes a husband. When the husband has violated his fidelity vow, it breaks the legacy of the intact family unit that Mother's Day alludes to and celebrates.
On a more personal level, the infidelity can deeply humiliate her, wounding her self-identity as a mother. Of course, the sad irony is that she is mother to his child.
It's embarrassing to admit this, but when I was very young and naive, I wouldn't have believed that cheating could happen when happily partnered couples then had a beautiful new baby. I think I extrapolated that from the look of love on new parents' faces as they proudly wheeled their baby carriages through Central Park.
1.) Because if you are of the population who likes their holidays to have actual religious or historical significance, it might concern you that it's ridiculously impossible to get consensus on the true origin of this holiday.
Between accounts that claim it's a liturgical holiday celebrating the martyrdom of Christian saints, and much earlier pagan history of licentious behaviors occurring on February 13-15, and medieval claims that St. Valentine did not even have any romantic connotations until Chaucer's poetry about "Valentines" in the 14th century... and too numerous a list of other historical claims, legends and folklore from around the world all laying claims to originating this holiday, the research will leave you exhausted and wishing it were Easter already.
Yes, Valentine's Day is a hybridized holiday if ever there was one.
Which basically means -- it was created to encourage shopping (see #2, below):
By now we've all seen the newsletters, magazine articles and online blog posts with helpful suggestions on how to navigate the holidays with less stress.
In the days, weeks, even months after Discovery, I was lucky if I could drag myself the ten feet between my bed and the bathroom shower every few days. You know what I'm talking about.
I didn't want to read about how to attend maybe less holiday parties this season to keep my stress levels down? Attend a party? You mean, one in which I'd have to get out of my pajamas to attend? And leave my house? And talk to people? Oh, I don't think so.