Mr. Marriage Counselor: "I Pulled a Tiger Woods and had an Affair"

    I-had-an-affair-what-now.jpgReader Question:

    Having marital problems, I've pulled a Tiger Woods and had an affair, anger and resentment issues, and lots more! Need HELP!! What do I do?" -Ramiro V.

    My Answer:

    Another guy I'm working with who's having an affair told me yesterday that it seems like every 3 months or so there's a famous celebrity, politician or athlete who gets caught cheating. Tiger Woods just happens to be the latest.


    You read that right. This guy is working with me and still having the affair. I work with guys before, during, and after. If you're like a lot of men, and like this other guy, you're struggling with ending it, even after you've been caught. Here's what to do:

    1. The first thing you need to do is damage control. A thing Tiger hasn't done so well. For us less famous men, that means how and what do we tell our wives, kids, and possibly extended family. It's important to be proactive. Getting some professional coaching with an expert who's been through this is crucial. Like most guys, your initial instincts will probably not be the best in what to say and how to say it.
    2. The second area of initial focus is getting some independent, professional counseling for support and guidance in beginning to sort through all the issues that have contributed to your being in an affair. That's a lot of stuff when you really think about it. But to simplify it, you need help in making some key decisions that will prevent your whole life from being destroyed. Like this other guy, you need help in figuring out what to do with the affair and your marriage, and then help in actually doing it. A lot of men are so unhappy with their marriage and see no hope of it ever changing that the idea of leaving the affair makes no sense, so they don't end it. The reality though is that you can't keep living two lives.


    The longer term work will be figuring out why it happened, what needs to change in your marriage, what you want your life to look like, and rebuilding trust. But for right now, focus on #1 and #2 above and get some professional help -this is no time to risk relying on your buddies' amateur advice.

    -Kurt Smith, Marriage Counselor


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