A common thread with adultery is the struggle to come to terms with what’s happened. Tragically, many lose far more years afterward than necessary. What if it could be done in weeks instead of years? It took me 1.5 months to “get over it”. To get over the betrayal. Sounds great, right?
But Clint, you have no idea how far back we go! You have no idea how much time I’ve invested in this. Really? Well, I remember the first day I saw her. I was at the back of the class and she got up to go to the front. Needless to say, she caught my eye. I turned to the girl seated next to me and asked, “Who’s that?” I was twelve.
I am completely convinced that my story is such to cancel any excuses you may have. I don’t feel anything… No anger, pain, regret. Absolutely nothing and it’s wonderful 😊
Can I let you in on a little secret? Come closer so I can whisper it in your ear… There’s nothing more annoying than a happy ex. They want you to pine over them, to run after them. To be broken. Egos take a knock when the victim is enjoying life and having fun.
So let’s get started. There are many suggestions as to what you should do. Some say, keep yourself busy, focus on work. Seems reasonable, doesn’t it? If you can avoid the issue long enough, surely time would heal the wound. After all, what you don’t dwell on can’t hurt you.
Drowning your sorrows
Some people try to numb the pain with alcohol, this is a terrible idea. The problem is, you try to numb yourself and then you have that emotional meltdown, but your brain is intoxicated so you can’t process the emotion. You sober up and it’s like a reset button. You can’t even remember the pain so it’s as if it never happened. You need to get over it and you do that by pushing through it.
Waves of emotions
Here’s the thing, your emotions are like the tide. One day, you’ll wake up and feel fine. It’s very deceptive, you’ll say to yourself, “I’m fine”. Others will say, “You’re handling it so well.” of course you’re fine, you’re ankle deep. Everyone is brave when the waves are just washing over their feet. Emotion comes in waves and the tide starts to rise before you know it, it’s waist high. Then it’s up to your chest, now you’re getting anxious. Suddenly it’s over your head and you can’t breathe. At that moment, when you feel like you’re drowning. This is what you need to do.
Music is such a part of our everyday lives that we sometimes underestimate its influence. A picture is worth a thousand words. An artist can portray a thought or emotion through imagery with paint and canvas. Likewise, a musician has the ability to encapsulate an emotion through sound.
We see this in movies, the score plays a major role in setting the mood for the scene. Think of any horror movie that scared your socks off. The background music played a major role in freaking you out.
We’re going to harness the power of music to paint a mental picture in your mind. You’re going to visualize a moment in the future when all the hurt that you’re feeling is a distant memory. And you’re going to pick a song that best encapsulates the emotions you’re going to feel in that moment. It’s your own personal soundtrack for that moment.
When the situation you’re in gets unbearable, when your emotions are getting the best of you, you’re going to retreat to that moment. You’re going to visualize that moment as a reminder that one day, everything will be okay. Your song is going to make that moment more vivid, more real.
The song should have appropriate lyrics. The music should feel right for that moment. If that moment is in a movie, would the song fit? Preferably Christian music because secular music tends to be about you overcoming obstacles on your own strength. If you’re in true despair, you need God. You’re not strong enough. Definitely no rock music! I like rock but adding rock music to an already volatile situation will make matters worse. Rock music stirs up anger and you don’t want to do something crazy. Rock is adrenaline in audio format and should be reserved for workouts.
In the depths of my hurt, when my marriage, my world, everything that I planned for my life was falling to pieces, I would use Bethel Music and William Matthews, “Glory to Glory” to visualize a “future memory”, my next wedding. My last wedding. To someone that would be my helpmeet. Someone that God will send into my life. (Hey, don’t judge me! I was a mess at that point)
Surely after betrayal, you’d think that the last thing I should be thinking of is trusting another person with my life. It’s not supposed to make sense, it’s just supposed to give you hope. Hope that what you’re going through is temporary. You need this because it can feel overwhelming. It’s what I needed at that moment.
I understand that what I’m describing may sound terrifying. You’re thinking, “What if it never happens? I don’t want to be disappointed.” It’s simply a mechanism to help you push through the pain. That’s all. Who cares if it never happens the way you envisioned it. Remember the famous scripture, Proverbs 19:21:
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”
God loves you and He’s got you. You may not understand your current situation but you’re going to be okay. It’s not about being delusional, it’s hope. It’s helped me get through my darkest hour. I’m giving you a tool to help you believe that this is not the end. We’re stirring up hope for a better future.
Here’s where it gets tricky. Just because you’ve gotten over it doesn’t mean you’re ready for a new relationship. Getting over it is the equivalent to leg day. For those of you that never attempted a workout program and are wondering what I’m on about. Nope, leg day isn’t a festive occasion in Africa, it’s a day you question your life choices like, “Why did I eat that pizza?” or “One little cheeseburger wouldn’t hurt…”
Like leg day, you’ve pushed through the workout. You cried, you gnashed your teeth and you got through that 60-minutes which seemed like an eternity. Likewise, you may have gotten over it but you’re still tender from the experience. You’re going to be sore for a little while, just like the days following leg day.
In the case of an affair, the tenderness comes from the realization that your partner didn’t care about you. And in that tender state, if someone is caring and sympathetic, you’ll either make unnecessary compromises or misinterpret the situation. Although I got over the affair quickly, the tenderness lasted a few months. The total time was a little under 12 months to be back to normal.
Old habits die hard
The question remains, how do you know that you’re not only over it but back to normal? A good indication is when old habits resurface. For me, I’m goal orientated and driven, I fell off that bandwagon for a while. During this time period, I was unable to focus on anything and my productivity temporarily took a nosedive. I realized I was back to normal when I started hitting my full stride again.
When your default settings appear, you have successfully recalibrated and now, you’re in the right frame of mind to consider a relationship.
And that is my take on how to get over it. I’ve shared my personal experience, I don’t expect you to take my word for it. Try it out for yourself. I believe it will help you through the depths of your despair as well. Let me know how it goes.
My goal is to emulate Jesus and follow his example but if all else fails, I’ll be like David. A writer, a man after God’s own heart and someone not to be trifled with.
I believe in discussing life in a candid (unfiltered), no holds barred manner that stimulates personal growth.
I spend my spare time creating content that is informative, entertaining and that will help others in their personal development.
The Hustle is a project that focuses on career and purpose.
I also have a cooking vlog called Passing it on which is on Facebook and YouTube.
In matters of faith, I contribute to this ministry.