When you learn of your spouse’s affair, it feels so disempowering. The one you love has deceived you. He or she has acted without regard for your feelings or for the best interest of your family. Along with the flood of emotions you feel at that point, you probably also feel powerless over your life.

You were the faithful one, the one who kept the marriage vows, the one who was all in. And now you feel like you’ve been stabbed in the back by the one who promised to love you for better or worse.

What can you do in the midst of feeling disempowered? Do you have any choices?

Yes. You have lots of choices. You get to choose

-how you respond to your emotions

-the words you say to your spouse

-the actions you take toward your spouse

-the words you say to your children regarding their unfaithful parent

-the words you say to friends, extended family and coworkers regarding your spouse

-what steps towards healing you will or will not take

-the perspective that you have regarding this entire situation

-the perspective you have about yourself and the part you did or didn’t play in this horrible ordeal

-how you feel about the third party

-which friends you allow to speak into your life at this time

-which advice you will listen to

-where you will seek help and advice

-how you will make yourself feel better

-how active or passive you will be in healing from this news

-who you tell and don’t tell

-whether or not you will forgive

-whether or not you will stay in the marriage

-your level of hope or despair

Come to think about it, you’re not really disempowered at all. You have a tremendous amount of power. Yes, there is a sense in which you are a victim of your spouse’s bad choices. But when you know what has happened, you are no longer at the mercy of ignorance. Now you have the power to make choices which will affect the rest of your life.

Every choice will lead to an end result. Even choosing to do nothing is a choice. Be careful what you choose to do next.