I lifted the phone out of my husband’s hands. He was so tired lately and had fallen asleep in bed while texting. I’d been out of town for the day and had come home late to find him already in bed. As I went to plug it in for the night, I saw a conversation on the screen that took my breath away. He had been texting a woman and a quick glance through the texts indicated that there had been more than a texting relationship.
My husband had been unfaithful.
I wanted to throw up.
That discovery began a nine month battle for my marriage. After I discovered the infidelity, he broke off the relationship. A few weeks later he returned to it. That would happen seven times before the battle finally ended. Five months after the discovery, he left to pursue the other relationship. I found myself a single parent with three heartbroken adult children and two distraught teenagers still at home.
Finally after nearly a year of hell on earth, Mark stopped fighting with God. I’d had a front row seat at watching the spiritual warfare in his soul and I now had a front row seat at watching him repent and surrender himself fully to God. However, it would be two more months before he moved back home. Even after he recommitted to our marriage and eventually returned home, our journey of healing and trust building had just begun.
Our story isn’t rare.
Unfortunately our story isn’t rare. Too many couples are navigating the realities of infidelity. Pornography too often rapes the soul of a marriage by setting the stage for unrealistic expectations and broken trust. However, broken trust doesn’t have to be caused only by those two biggies, trust can be broken by constant criticism, dishonesty, financial foolishness, or even unguarded conversations with someone of the opposite sex.
Most marriages have likely experienced broken trust in some way big or small. So when trust is broken, how can it be restored? Is it possible to reconnect two hearts that have been broken? What does rebuilding trust look like in real life?
What does rebuilding trust look like?
While there’s no “one way” to heal a hurting marriage, Mark and I found that rebuilding trust requires effort from both parties. Accountability on one side must be balanced with a willingness to risk on the other side. That dance may need to go on for years. It becomes a new normal in your relationship that can result in a deeper sense of intimacy and oneness. It is actually possible to come out better on the other side, but not without a willingness for both of you to do the work of rebuilding and restoring trust.
So what does that look like practically? Where do we start when trust is broken?
It’s a bit longer than a typical blog post, so we’ve created a free “how to” guide you can download with six practical steps you can take to rebuild trust in a marriage.
You can take the next right step today! (If you’re reading this in your email, click here to request the how-to guide.)