“Why do the wicked prosper,
growing old and powerful?”
-Job 21:7, NLT
Cheaters sometimes–or even often–seem so happy and carefree. This includes even when their cheating ways have been uncovered by the victims–i.e. the faithful spouses. On the other hand, faithful spouses often look depressed, anxious, and angry following infidelity discovery.
In this post, I am advocating for empathy for the “twitchy” faithful spouses.
They are “twitchy” for good reasons:
1. The cheater has the power in the relationship as they are the spouse that knows what they did while keeping the faithful spouse in the dark. It is easier to be carefree when you have the information that completes the narrative. That is where the cheater stands. On the other hand, the faithful spouse is left with gaping holes in the marital narrative. He or she was just hit by the bus labelled “SOUL RAPE!”
Wouldn’t you be “twitchy” too if you just had your soul violated and were left wondering when or if it would happen again?!
2. Knowing the narrative includes have time to scheme. Some especially cruel cheaters paint their adultery victims as either crazy or abusive (or both) in order to stay in control. So, when normal grief over murdering of the marriage hits the faithful spouse, people are more likely to view it as the cheater being right about the faithful spouse being crazy than as the natural consequence of a faithful spouse being soul raped.
Wouldn’t you be “twitchy” too if you were disbelieved and dismissed as crazy or abusive because of your cheater’s successfully laid plans to protect his or her image?
3. Often times, faithful spouses are financially vulnerable to cheaters. Money is power. It can be used to launch terrorizing and harassing legal attacks. And people’s good will can be bought. It is a sad fact of life.
When you are in financial need and anxious about your life’s basics, it is very hard to be carefree. It is hard to trust God’s promises to provide for our needs.
Wouldn’t you be “twitchy” too if you were about to be sued out of your food, shelter, and clothing by your once beloved spouse?
These are just a few examples. More could be said. Faithful spouses have good reasons to be “twitchy;” so, I hope we all can cut them some slack.