Making the commitment to build a future together is a big step for many people, and they the trust they give their partner is a fundamental part of it. They have generally been raised to believe it is one of the most defining moments of their life, and they look forward to a future filled with mutual decisions that will benefit both of them. For those who plan to start a family, they are often looking forward to raising their children and enjoying grandchildren. The shock of discovery that a partner has betrayed them by also being married to another person can be completely devastating.

The initial shock will often create a physical reaction such as elevated heartbeat, difficulty breathing and even a general paralysis. The betrayal goes deeply into the emotional centers of the brain, and processing it can be difficult for the person who has suddenly found out they are not their partner’s only spouse. It can shake them up enough to require medical assistance in some cases. Even those who appear outwardly fine will struggle physically.

Getting past that first shocking moment will be difficult, but it can be survived. The next few days will be a time when emotions can take over, and the pain settles in for a long stay. Some people will recover quickly and make their own decisions on what to do, but other spouses will need some time to get their feelings under control before they can begin to resolve the issues facing them. It may take them months before they are ready to face their spouse and demand answers.

It is a shocking discovery for many to learn their life is not what they believed, and finding out a spouse is someone other than they thought can be emotionally and physically devastating. Getting past the shock of discovery will take time, and it will help to have loved ones near to help cushion the blow.