mental health, therapy, counseling and psychology terms glossary


Infidelity is the term for unfaithfulness (affair/cheating) within a monogamous relationship. Viewpoints on what constitutes infidelity vary – some see deep conversations with others as cheating and others feel it is the act of sex with another. The extent of the unfaithfulness has no real relevance to the outcome – it all feels terrible.

A person who has been betrayed often feels grief, rage, shame, depression, and trauma. This can lead to problems at work or cause risky behaviors including using sex, food, drugs, or alcohol to cope. These responses are quite common and can happen whether the couple decides to split or to try to stay together.

Couples therapy can help the two sides discuss the problems that led to the infidelity and work towards solutions to those problems. Individual therapy can help to restore the self-esteem of the person who was cheated on and also helps overcome the guilt of the individual who committed the adultery. People make mistakes – sometimes big ones – and therapy is a good resource for helping to move through and past the bumps of life.

At Claibourne Counseling, we offer treatment for individuals seeking support and healing!