Infidelity, Betrayal and Shattered Trust


"Very often we don't go elsewhere because we are looking for another person. We go elsewhere because we are looking for another self. It isn't so much that we want to leave the person we are with as we want to leave the person we have become." -Esther Perel


When trust is broken, especially when broken by a loved one, it feels like one's whole world comes crumbling in and the pain is excruciating. 

The walls of the house are trust and commitment when trust is broken it feels like the whole house is ruined and all the dreams within crushed. It can feel so heavy and often hurt so much that one doesn't see a way out. Psychologists have discovered that many people suffer from PTSD symptoms when they discover their loved one has cheated on them. The pain is indescribable and it feels impossible to get out of there 'alive'. Most people believe that if their partner cheated they'd never be able to love and trust them again. And it is completely understandable. But... I've also seen the impossible happen. I've seen couples take this crumbled heap of shattered dreams and rebuild their marriage into something even stronger than it was before. It takes a lot of courage. It takes determination. It takes self-sacrifice (because no, it's not fair that you got hurt and now you need to work on the marriage too.. but that's what it takes). But, for what it's worth, I have seen it happen. And I'd love to help you if you feel you can give this another chance. No, it won't be what it was. But it can be something much stronger.


Let me help you hold your big, heavy feelings while you learn the ways to rebuild your marriage, one with stronger foundations, where you're both building with the same picture for the future in mind. Whilst learning these ways we will also be working on atonement and rebuilding the dreams when you're ready.

Need support on navigating the turmoil after the discovery of an affair? Read more here..

The Affair Recovery Counselling Process is in-depth and intense and generally follows the following steps:

  • Read the Navigating the Turmoil post (by clicking on the underlined words or here).

  • 1.5hr session together to meet you both and cover the basics of the current situation together.

  • Individual Session with each of you. You are each in a very different place, so I need to meet you where you are. Here I will assist you each in your attempts to cope with the crisis.

  • Then more crisis support sessions together or apart, or starting the assessment process. This includes meeting you both together again, then another two individual sessions (this time to understand your past childhoods better), three online assessments and a feedback session that gives the way forward for us. This can be done in a workshop (preferably) or weekly sessions.

  • Then marriage counselling usually begins working on rebuilding the trust and working on what was eating at the marriage in the past. 

Individual sessions are highly recommended (with another therapist) for each of you as there is an identity, emotional and spiritual crisis and grieving amidst it all that needs to be addressed often too. 

Esther Perel is an international expert on infidelity and couples. This video is a little insight into her views, and if you like her work, I recommend you read her books.

Michelle Weiner-Davis is also an expert on marriage and I highly recommend her work if you get a chance to read her books or watch her videos.

29, 7th Avenue, Voelklip, HERMANUS

Western Cape, South Africa

The Couples Connection

Tel: +27- (0)83-639-3339

Tehilla Luttig

Registered Private Practice Counsellor 

Pr No 0538396 Reg No PRC0016837  

(Hons. BSocSci Psychology - UCT 2007)

Certified Life Coach

Licensed BWRT practioner

Tehilla Luttig's profile on the Gottman Referral Network