Jay and Julie met on a bitter January night in 1997, warmed by the nearby fireplace and an instant spark of attraction; the evening extended into a 2 a.m. conversation and a 10-year marriage. It was the last thing either of them expected, yet the magic was undeniable.
They were, by all accounts, a model couple. Both well educated, successful, and upwardly mobile. Jay, a highly trained professional with a doctorate in psychology alongside an MBA; he had a thriving national executive coaching and consulting practice to the corporate elite. Julie, a former Miss Oklahoma contestant and model, was a professional entertainer with a demo album to her credit and a highly regarded talent and performance coach.
It was a fairytale courtship, redefining the boundaries of reality.
Success rewarded the family with a gorgeous home, comfortable lifestyle, and exotic vacations. Behind the storybook appearances, however, the foundation of the marriage had cracked. Jay entered into a clandestine affair, separating himself emotionally from the family. When the affair was finally revealed, both Jay and Julie had to face the ugly reality of infidelity. What had started as a beautiful romance ended in tremendous pain. Jay and Julie separated; shortly afterward Julie was diagnosed with lymphatic cancer. Divorce and a broken home followed.
But the love that started in that Full Moon Café in 1997 was about to surprise them both. Through the often contentious, divisive process of divorce, Jay and Julie met each other in brazen honesty. It was in the midst of ‘who kept the house and the couch, who got the art collection and dinnerware, who had primary custody of their children’ that their friendship long lost began to re-emerge. Beneath the ashes of their burnt lives the seed of a deeper love never before experienced was birthed.
Jay and Julie resolved to reinvent their relationship and their life together, one informed by the lessons of the past trauma, creating a sense of possibility and hope. With a lot of work and commitment, Jay and Julie healed their scarred relationship with love. In the shadow of the Magic Kingdom, on a tranquil lake surrounded by their children, Jay and Julie once more exchanged their marriage vows. This time, however, the weaknesses in their marriage were now strengths, their needs were now fulfilled, their hopes now realized. By working through the pain and committing themselves to the healing process, they found the secrets to a stronger, more satisfying marriage.
They’re here to share their story, their life, and their secrets for reclaiming a trusting, tender marriage despite a painful past. Jay and Julie are living proof that there is still hope for an extraordinary marriage, even after infidelity.
About the Authors
With “quadruple-threat” training in vocal music, dance, acting, and public speaking, Julie Kent-Ferraro has performed in live theater, print, commercials, and motion pictures. In 2006, Julie experienced her own nightmares becoming reality when she simultaneously faced a diagnosis of lymphoma and infidelity within her marriage. Her strength, determination, and love for her family prevailed, and she is now proud to call herself a cancer AND infidelity survivor. Today, Julie is a sought-after speaker by many family, spiritual, and women’s organizations and is a trained affair-recovery coach by the world’s premier marriage and family researchers, Dr. John and Julie Gottman.
Dr. Jay Kent-Ferraro
Dr. Jay Kent-Ferraro is a recognized expert in optimal performance coaching and human development, with over two decades of real-life experience. He received his post-doctoral training at the prestigious Gestalt Institute in Cleveland, earned a doctorate in clinical and counseling psychology at an APA-approved training program, is a Licensed Professional Counselor, and Certifed Corporate Coach & Trainer. Dr. Jay’s passion is to share the power of his very personal journey of overcoming infidelity teaching others how to design lives of their choosing regardless of the circumstances people find themselves.