I recently sat down in my office with a young couple and almost instantly, tears began to flow. They started an all-too-familiar story about how their marriage had started to drift onto autopilot, and their passion, their communication and even their friendship with each other had faltered. During this same time period of relational drift, the husband had started a “friendship” with a woman at work, and the relationship quickly progressed and crossed lines.
The brokenhearted wife had discovered the evidence when she read some text messages on her husband’s phone and now they were sitting in shock trying to figure out how this had happened and what they were supposed to do next. I did my best to encourage them and offer some next steps. You can see some of what I shared in my 3-minute video on “how to heal after an affair.”
While healing is possible after adultery, affairs cause unimaginable pain and relational wreckage and couples should do everything in their power to proactively prevent infidelity. Below are five guidelines that have the power to safeguard your marriage from the pain of infidelity by creating an “Affair-Proof” marriage.
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(In no particular order):
1. Keep all your flirting focused on your spouse.
If you’re always trying to get attention of the opposite sex, you’re eventually going to get the kind of attention that can wreck your marriage. Flirt with your spouse often, but never flirt with anyone else!
2. Never have a conversation you wouldn’t want your spouse to hear or see.
The moment you’re talking with someone and you think, “I hope my husband/wife doesn’t find out about this,” you are WAY out of line already. Show respect to your spouse even when he/she is not physically present with you.
3. Make communication with our spouse a priority.
Communication does for a marriage what breathing does for lungs! Stay connected with daily, uninterrupted conversation. For more on this, watch our 3-minute video on why Your iPhone might be hurting your marriage.
4. Make sex a priority in your marriage.
There’s more than an affair than just sex, but having a healthy sex life within marriage is still one of the best ways to build a strong marriage while simultaneously safeguarding against the temptations of infidelity. For more on this, read our popular post on What every married couple needs to know about SEX.
5. Talk openly and positively about your spouse in public.
Don’t be an “Undercover Married Person.” Your co-workers and associates should know that you’re married and that you love your spouse. Keep his or her picture on your desk. Always wear your wedding ring.
For more tools to help you build a rock-solid marriage, please check out bestselling book, “iVow: Secrets to a Stronger Marriage” which is available on Amazon.com as a Paperback, audiobook and Kindle ebook and is now also available on iTunes for instant ebook download on iPhones, iPads and all Apple devices.