Dealing with disclosure is an important consideration for all the parties affected, and each has an important stake in doing disclosure well. Done effectively, full disclosure allows for both parties to begin the healing process. The offending spouse needs to become an authentic, transparent partner. The betrayed spouse needs to know the scope of the betrayal so they can begin to properly assess the hurt and begin the grieving process.
Sadly, without healthy guidelines, the full disclosure process can be detrimental to long term healing. Both parties have healthy boundaries to consider in the exchange of information. Fearful betrayers can easily try to minimize the impact of sharing by withholding important information. Attempting to reduce the current pain only results in deeper pain when the hidden truth is revealed. Betrayed spouses can also seek too much or unhelpful information as they try to sort out what is real or feared.
Find a Counselor
If possible, get a counselor who is used to dealing with these situations to assist you. Their goal is to ensure the full truth gets out, while protecting the partner from inflicting more hurt than they need to. We recognize that partner's need for full disclosure and to know the extent of the harm that has been done. A counselor can assist in navigating these hard questions to ensure that the spouse gets what they need, while also attempting to prevent unnecessary pain.
Consider the guidelines found in this Disclosure Guidelines document. They are meant to help both parties get what they need out of disclosure, and to ensure it is done in a wise manner.
Be Aware Of What Is Required Next
Finally, a relationship that has been broken by infidelity or sexually addictive behaviors can only begin to rebuild in an environment of honesty and transparency. It is a process that takes courage and commitment by both parties. The healing takes time and the grace of God. For the betrayer, the choice to be honest is a decision of the will empowered by faith. For the betrayed, knowing what information is helpful or hurtful to your personal recovery can be confusing. Trust the process with others who have been through the process. You are building something new with the demolition of the old lies with full disclosure. It is the beginning of the process,
As we have had decades of experience navigating these issues, please feel free to contact us so we can assist you in getting the truth that needs to be said, and the closure that needs to occur.