How to: Forgive cheating
To get the #NakedTruth on working past cheating, Loop sat down with Pastor Gabriel Charles, an ordained Minister and a trained Leader.
Still in keeping with the topic of 'Relationships', Loop sought to deal with the white elephant in the room. Where others rather hide cheating or laugh at ‘de horner man crying’ while the wifey cries herself to bed at night over secret texts from ‘de side gyal’, Loop got the pastor to address infidelity and provide some guidance.
For those people who are together but one person has cheated in the past, pastor Charles had some words for both parties.
“The individual who cheated must admit it and be sorry for it. It is critical to ask forgiveness. The cheater must see the level of hurt caused and where possible answer as many questions as possible which their partner might have. The cheater must be patient with their partner and allow them to process the pain caused in their own time, instead of trying to force them to.
“The wronged partner should grieve his/her hurt and express how he/she honestly feels. This partner should also be willing to forgive and bring resolution. Together they should seek the help of a counselor to help them work it through.”
Charles reminded that when in a relationship, no one can make the tough decisions for you. So, recognising that some people cannot easily overcome the hurt of discovering that their partner has stepped out on them, he advised:
“If the wronged party cannot get through this easily they should seek a period of separation to reflect in their own space.
“The partner who is not over the infidelity may want to be isolated from his/her spouse. He/she may be angry and sad. They may also be suspicious and ask a lot of questions. These behaviors should be met with understanding.”
With many people in movies always tossing out the question, ‘Can we still be friends?’ after a breakup, he also dispelled the myth that counsellors are miracle workers or magicians.
If the hurt is too much to get past and the relationship ends, he said, “Counsellors cannot guarantee an amicable separation, that is up to the couple. The counsellor can only help them process their pain and anger so that the parting is as peaceful as possible.”
As a man of God, pastor Charles also left a biblical Word with couples. He highlighted two scriptures.
“Ephesians 5:25 - Husbands love your wives even as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it.
“Genesis 2: 23-25 - This is now bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh . . .therefore shall a man leave his father and mother and cleave unto his wife and they shall be one flesh . . .and they were both naked, the man and his wife and were not ashamed.
“These scriptures would help couples to see that they are partners on the same team.”
And to those who have been hurt and are scared to get back on the relationship bicycle fearing a repeat episode, he gently explained, “That person should tread cautiously, seek God's guidance and realize that life is all about second chances.”
Pastor Charles has been married 32 years, counselling for eight years and he was trained at the Haggai Institute in Maui, Hawaii.