The Ashley Madison Affair
Most would agree that a successful marriage is based on trust and communication. Each of those two elements, however, are dependent upon the other. You cannot trust your spouse if he or she will not talk to you, and effective communication is impossible if you cannot trust each other. When one aspect is suddenly thrown into question, the other ultimately suffers. For millions of American couples, that is exactly what happened several weeks ago when hackers publicly exposed the subscriber list of the affair-seeking website Ashley Madison. The issue before them now, however, is whether or not it is time think about divorce.
Take Your Time
When the subscriber data was made public, many raced to the internet to see if their spouse—husband, in most cases—was on the list. An estimated 20 million men had an account of some sort on Ashley Madison, or roughly one in six married American men. If one of those men is you or your husband, it is time for some serious soul-searching. Tempting as it may be, a rushed decision is not recommended.
You and your spouse need to take the necessary time to fully understand the extent of situation. If he signed up, did he do it purely out of curiosity or in a moment of frustration? Did he actively pursue and consummate an affair? Were there warning signs in relationship previously? There are no “right” or “wrong” answers to these questions. They can, however help guide your conversation toward the right decision for your future.
Your Spouse’s Reaction
While it may not always be possible to read someone, you have probably been your spouse long enough to recognize the truth. A spouse who acknowledges his or her responsibility quickly and without deflecting may provide hope for your relationship. If he tries to mislead, lie, rationalize, and make excuses, it may be time to consider moving on. It is important, though, to realize the difference between rationalization and underlying reasons. A spouse who wants you to know his reasons will not usually try to avoid responsibility for his actions, while a rationalizing spouse will be attempting to escape blame.
Taking the Next Step
If you do decide to end your marriage, you should do so with the realization that, more than likely, both of you contributed to its breakdown. An extra-marital affair is often the manifestation of much deeper issues in the relationship. Although such behavior may not be acceptable, understanding it could help you prevent future relationships from taking a similar path.
No matter what may have caused your marriage to fail, divorce can be a challenging process. Contact an experienced Geneva family law attorney today for guidance through your situation. Call 630-232-9700 for a confidential review of your case. We are committed to helping you find the peace of mind and security you deserve.