When I was young and naïve—OK, maybe not all that young—I had an affair with a married man. I'm not proud of it. Lasting all of 15 months from blissful beginning to agonizing end, it was, in fact, my worst moment. But I chose not to let it define me. I moved past it, learned from it, and have allowed the lessons I took away from that experience to make me a better friend, a better therapist, and a better partner. Painful situations, after all, tend to teach us the lessons we remember best.
Remember that in every choice you make, no matter what or whom it involves, you are always accountable to yourself. Live in such a way that you can be proud of who you are. And that doesn't mean not making mistakes. It means failing, learning from those failures, and failing better next time. It means allowing your pain to teach you rather than define you. I hope learning from my experience will save you from some future pain yourself. Here's what I learned: