Infidelity affects children in many ways which may not be always apparent to adults who are involved. It is destructive and when there are kids’ situation becomes more complicated because children are neither in the age nor in the situation to understand the scenario, whoever at fault, for them it is totally non-acceptable.
Infidelity in marriages generally occurs unintentionally in a majority of cases, when there arises a communication gap between partners. A married person falls in an affair with a colleague or someone in close proximity not seeking for sex but because they can’t share their things with a spouse or they feel neglected and can’t discuss what is going on in their married life.
There are rare cases, in which people have a pattern of cheating which was started long before the marriage. But whatever the reason being, it is not justifiable and intensely painful for the other person as well as kids involved. But the exact reaction of a child depends on various other factors when they come to know about the infidelity. The most profound effect on children’s future relationships depends on how parents deal with this crisis, especially the parent who got cheated. Let’s understand how parenthood is affected by infidelity.
Children whose parents are involved in infidelity feel highly ashamed, it affects their self-respect while generating the feeling of sadness and embarrassment. Because one of the parents has done something so bad that another parent is deeply hurt, and which is not even acceptable by society. Children start running away from everyone as they are afraid that people will talk about it and if anyone will raise any question in front of them, how will they face the situation. They are so ashamed that they try to break all the bond with society and start enjoying their loneliness. This situation is never good for the healthy upbringing of a child.
Children are expected to follow rules, from the very start parents teach them to behave properly, respect everyone, never lie or cheat and not to hurt anyone. When they find out that one parent has cheated on the other, all the teaching, value as well as trust falls into confusion. Kids start searching for the answers, how can a person who taught them the value, himself involved in cheating? The question generally remains unanswered, because there is no satisfying or justifying answer for it. This impact whole psyche of an innocent mind and sometimes they react by testing the rules themselves. If you doubt your partner of infidelity, you can hire a private detective agency for assurance.
Unknowingly they become the same as their parents and they too start cheating. Above all, after the infidelity when parents decide to live together while one or both are cheating, children get profoundly confused about the meaning of love as well as marriage. This is how parenthood is highly impacted by infidelity, it can influence the entire life of your child making them miserable and lost.
Anger- the Worst Enemy.
Anger is a person’s worst enemy and most common reaction to every hurtful situation. In this scenario, you can’t blame your child for getting angry, because they are suffering without any fault. It takes much time for them to accept the fact and understanding follows much later. It is obvious for them to be angry on the cheating parents but sometimes they get angry on the other parents too because they feel the other parent must have done something that leads to this situation.
As per them, if he/she may be more loving, caring or understanding the cheating should be prevented. Additionally, they generally feel torn between the feelings of anger and yearning for love, that’s how they start blaming both the parents affecting the parenthood.
Lack of Trust.
When kids feel cheated by the most important and trustable persons in the world, their own parents. Their entire concept of trust breakdowns, making them feel that they should not trust anyone in the world ever, they may develop the belief that they are not worthy of receiving love. If their parents can cheat, anyone can, they will find insecurity in all of their future relationships. Throughout their life, they won’t be able to trust love which will automatically convert them into a lonely adult. A child often draws the conclusion that marriage is all fake and love an illusion.
How to Handle the Situation
The younger the child is, the better the situation is and lesser a parent needs to say about. If your children have heard or suspect anything and start questioning you, then it is important to give them factual answers than responding emotionally. If you will try to manipulate or hide, it will make the situation worse, they will again feel cheated and betrayed. It will impact them intensely if they realize that the secret is withheld from them, especially when these secrets are already haunting them.
A parent must understand the situation will be much better if they will accept that they are separating in front of their children and then do this together. Children may feel little better knowing that their intention is to continue to parent them together.
Parents must realize if two people are in a relationship, they owe, to be honest with each other and if they can’t fulfill the commitment, they should separate themselves from the relationship before indulging in any other relation. Consequences of infidelity are tremendous, especially when your children are involved, because then it’s not only about you and your spouse, it’s more about the children.
The situation will hamper their innocent mind and they will struggle with trust issues of their own throughout their life. You should ask yourself, how your children will be able to trust again. What kind of relationships they will have in the future? Because you were not only unfaithful to your partner but to your children too. Also, not every child struggle with the same reactions but a maximum of adult that are from families where one parent was involved in infidelity ends up being a cheater themselves.