more painful than adultery

My husband's affair devastated me. But not as much as his deception did. For a year and a half, he lied every single day. Not only to me, but also to our team of staff and interns. When I think of the sheer magnitude of dishonesty he used to cover up his unfaithfulness, I can barely breathe.

I wish I could say that the lies stopped when he was caught.

But I can't.

I think the web of deception grew so thick that he could no longer tell truth from lies. He deceived others so much that he became deceived himself.

It wrecks my heart that he was never forthcoming with the truth. It had to be coerced out of him. Literally.

The day after Thanksgiving, when confronted with undeniable proof, my husband confessed to what he called "an emotional affair". I knew that wasn't all it was, so I continued to ask questions and challenge his justifications. Even after I left South Africa for counseling here in the States. And even though he told me my distrust was making it impossible to move forward.

Late one night, while I was here and he was there, I questioned him yet again as we chatted online. And he finally admitted that it was a full-blown affair.

That was a year ago today.

The blatant, ongoing deception hurts far more than the adultery. And it remains the most painful and difficult part of my own journey of healing.

It's why trust is so shaky.

And why doubt comes so easily.

It's also why I'll never stop asking the Lord to help me live a life marked by unshakable integrity.