It occurs in a marriage in which one feels somewhat offended and seeks revenge through infidelity. It is less of a movement toward the other person and more of a departure from the spouse.
1. The relationship can be a direct response to the spouse’s relationship. “I’ll show you! Take this! I want you to suffer as much as I do.” Or the relationship could be revenge for some other form of disruption or perceived emotional damage: “I don’t have enough here, so I’ll show you!” Or, “Here, I have your attention!”
2. This typically occurs in a marriage where effective personal confrontation does not occur or is ineffective. You are wary of expressing yourself fully with the other person. The marriage relationship is usually characterized by civilization, but the two, in essence, do not know each other very well. They are polite, but there is no fire. They may want more, but are not sure how to get more.
3. The fire that exists is a burning tension beneath the surface of marriage. Tension can be the result of frustration one or both feel when they believe their needs have not been met. There is a genuine desire for more, on the part of the spouse, but it is not happening.
4. This form of revenge serves as a wake-up call for the relationship. Yes, and I use the word yes consciously, the couple can “get it out” – release the tension – and start talking about needs, yes, the relationship has a good chance of turning into something wonderful. One or both of you must say with great passion: “I REALLY want you! I will no longer settle for seething frustration and seeming indifference to my needs. This is what I need and hope … ”
5. There is another type of revenge relationship that contains less hope and is more destructive. A revenge relationship can be the result of long-lasting, unresolved anger or rage toward the opposite sex. There is a persistent pattern in which the person rejects others in anger or rage. There is also a great projection, or this person blames others for her situation.
6. This form of anger is more anger than frustration. Anger arises from the desire to hurt more than from the frustration of unmet needs. This person also shows little concern for the other person. While someone is more frustrated that he wants his needs met, he is generally more considerate than the other person.
Tip: start distinguishing between anger and frustration. Determine the type of revenge you face. When it comes to anger, learn to protect yourself and set limits. Begin to take good care of yourself. Start saying no! If it’s a frustrating business, start considering your needs. Identify and express these needs. Risk. Lift the button of passion. Have the courage to attend to the needs, both yours and others.