And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
-2 Corinthians 11:14, KJV
While discovering adultery is awful, I think some of the more lasting pain comes from the positive experiences one had while married to a cheater. These memories–whether built on a lie or not–suggest things could have been otherwise. Reflecting upon them is like reflecting on a Greek tragedy where you see both the beauty and the great loss at once.
Remembering such events evokes a truly poignant feeling.
People who have not experienced such loss may not understand. They may be too busy distancing themselves from the reality that they are vulnerable too. In such, they might cast faithful spouses as knowingly duped as if cheaters walk around with horns on their heads and pitchforks in hand. Yeah, right!
Part of grieving is coming to peace with these positive memories. It is matter of acknowledging that yes, they exist. However, it is also an acknowledgment that one’s cheater decided such memories would forever be consigned to the past due to his/her moral failures. The future of new positive memories with them is lost.
As a saying I’ve heard goes, “Name it to tame it.” You are naming the positive memory so as to “tame” it. Like cataloging pictures from a trip taken many years ago, you are recognizing that you had fun back then, but that time is now over, and you are putting that memory away in its proper place. It no longer will clutter up your present or dictate your future.
Do I have positive memories from my first marriage? Of course, I do. And that is okay. I am entitled to my own emotions and memories.
But that does not stop me from daily looking at Mrs. DM and Munchkin, and thanking God that they are my family now!
My present is too busy to be cluttered with the ghosts–of even positive–memories of the past.
And I praise God for that!