Tiger Woods tried and failed. Jesse James tried and failed. Perhaps their transgressions had gone too far for the marriage to be saved by that point. What about the latest star caught in a cheating scandal, Dean McDermott? Husband of Tori Spelling and father of their four children--one just 15 months old, he was caught cheating on Spelling and voluntarily entered “rehab" for "sex addiction.” Is it really a voluntary admission simply because McDermott checked himself in, when he most likely would not have done so if he had not been caught cheating? More to the point, is the real problem sex addiction (what used to be called "nymphomania") or a lack of self control and what used to be called adultery. Rehab for that used to be, and still often is, marriage counseling.

    Collin County family attorneys point out that celebrities going into rehab for "sex addiction" should not to be confused with celebrities that seek treatment for addiction to drugs or alcohol. Country singer Keith Urban spent 90 days at the Betty Ford clinic for alcoholism one year into his marriage to actress Nicole Kidman. Seven years and two children later, he credits the rehab with saving not only his career, but his marriage and probably his life. When addiction to drugs (street or prescription), or alcohol is breaking up a marriage, rehab is an excellent step in not only getting the person suffering the addiction back on track, but the marriage as well.

    When anger is a problem for one spouse and it affects the relationship, then it is time for help with anger management. While anger is a normal emotion, and expression of it in an appropriate manner is healthy, if one person's anger is more about controlling the other person, this may be a sign that the behavior is becoming verbally or physically abusive.  There are many ways to learn to control one's anger, the first step being to learn what causes it and the second to learn what triggers it.  Anger has many aspects, many reasons, many warning signs, and many forms of expression.  Some anger is so  deeply rooted in childhood traumas that a person does not even realize they are reacting to a similar experience in the present the same way that they reacted to it in the past. Collin County family attorneys recommend learning conflict resolution skills, how to avoid triggers, how to express anger in the right way/setting, and getting therapy both individually and as a couple are all ways to address anger as a problem in a marriage.

    Back to cheating scandals. While people may have different opinions on whether it is due to sex addiction, everyone can probably agree that cheating on your spouse is a form of dishonesty--a betrayal of trust.  Betrayal of trust in a marriage goes to the very heart of the marriage; therefore, healing the wound caused by the betrayal and rebuilding trust may take a very, very long time.  Both spouses must decide if they want to save the marriage, and then decide if they are willing to put in the work it will take. A marriage counselor can work with the couple to figure out the reasons for the betrayal, and then work on forming a better relationship and rebuilding the trust.

    If you and your spouse are having marital problems and are not sure how to address them, contact the Collin County family attorneys at Nordhaus Walpole, PLLC, for help.