Still Skeptical of Her Spouse
Backstage, FBI profiler Jack Trimarco prepares to administer the polygraph exam to Shawn. "I don't want to be a negative in your life," Jack says. He wants Shawn to understand the gravity of his situation before he proceeds. "If you're telling the truth that you haven't had sex with any woman other than Beth since you married her, then you'll fly through this test. If that's not something you can pass, then don't take the test."[AD]
Jack rises and gives the young man a chance to ponder his warning. "I'll be sitting right outside," he says.
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Upon returning home, Elizabeth says she received a wake-up call. "Going on the Dr. Phil show was a changing day in my life," she says. "Shawn went on the show feeling like he could fool everyone. Dr. Phil just cut through all the crap. Shawn was offered the lie detector test, and at first he said he was going to take it. When he came back into the dressing room with me, he started making excuses that, because he sells cars, he has to lie."
"After hearing Jack's remarks to me in the polygraph room, I confessed to Elizabeth instead of taking a polygraph," Shawn says. "I came clean. I wanted my wife to know it. I don't think I ever would have admitted to my wife that I cheated on her if it wasn't for Dr. Phil and Jack Trimarco."
[AD]Elizabeth recounts how her spouse broke the news of his infidelity. "Shawn stood up in front of me and blurts out, â€˜I messed around when I came back to see my mom.' My stomach just dropped. Then he steps in front of me again and drops another bombshell: He cheated on me two years ago while we were married. All of my suspicions were confirmed."
"After I admitted to Beth that I cheated, I felt like it was a huge weight lifted off my shoulders," Shawn shares.
"Because Shawn admitted the truth, it has brought us closer. Dr. Phil gave Shawn the wake-up call he needed. Now it's up to Shawn to take that and run, because this is his last chance," Elizabeth says.
"Why did you decide to tell the truth?" Dr. Phil asks Shawn.
"I didn't want to hurt my wife anymore," Shawn says, his voice strained. "She had a right to know."
"You knew I knew," Dr. Phil says.
"Yes, sir," Shawn says.
"Did you know, or were you still believing [Shawn's stories]?" Dr. Phil asks Elizabeth.
"I didn't know if I was crazy, or if I should believe him. I never was able to get 100 percent confirmation," she answers.[AD]
Shawn says he wants to be a better husband and father.
"Have you asked yourself why you did what you did?" Dr. Phil asks him.
"Every day," Shawn responds. "I was inconsiderate. I was a coward. I was only thinking of myself and not my family."
Elizabeth tells Dr. Phil that at first, she blamed herself for her husband's unfaithfulness. "But then common sense kicked in. He's the one who did it," she says. "I was in the exact same relationship with him, going through the exact same turmoil, and I didn't decide to go out and cheat."
Dr. Phil turns to Jack Trimarco. "Were you surprised when he told the truth?" he asks.
"I wasn't surprised. I saw something in this couple, when they were there together, that can be admired," Jack answers. "However, I'm always surprised when someone reveals such a deep dark secret without the polygraph."
"If you can't forgive that, then you owe it to you and to him to say, â€˜That's it. I'm done,'" Dr. Phil tells Elizabeth. "You don't want to live the rest of your life with an open wound in this marriage. If that's what you feel, and you can't get past that, then you would need to get out of this relationship."[AD]
Dr. Phil says that both husband and wife need to be transparent. "Trust is rebuilt. It's based on history," Dr. Phil explains. He faces Elizabeth. "How much you trust him is as much dependent on you as it is him. You tend to trust people to the extent that you can handle it if they fail."
"I hear what you're saying, but at the same time, I'm thinking it's really hard to invest all of me 100 percent," Elizabeth says.
"You have to take this a step at a time. It's a process, and you build on it each day," Dr. Phil says. "It's worth the investment to put in the effort to try to work this out."