Saving a Relationship After Infidelity
Infidelity violates what is most sacred in any relationship: trust. Being unfaithful is something unforgivable, but many people end up forgiving their significant other (or they at least try to). It is often worth it to try and forgive, giving the person and the relationship another chance. In some cases, a relationship can even be strengthened by a difficult and trying experience if both members talk about it, compromise, and commit.
An act of infidelity can happen for many reasons. Depending on the level of the relationship, many people prefer to forgive their partner if he or she is genuinely repentant, in order to save a marriage and a shared life, which means a lot in many ways.
Although at first it may seem like a simple process, it can be difficult to sustain. Throughout the course of the relationship, certain insecurities or fears will keep arising. If these things aren’t addressed properly, clearly and sincerely by both members of the relationship, the recovery process can become a weary burden full of suffering.
Therefore, it is important if the decision to forgive is made, and if the guilty party is truly repentant, that an agreement, a compromise is established. If not established honestly, resentment, bitterness, and jealousy may emerge.
Forgiving infidelity is a job for two. The person who was unfaithful must understand the pain he or she has caused and must be truly and honesty sorry for doing it. The person who was betrayed must be completely certain that he or she can actually forgive the other. If both parties are able to do these things and there is still love between them, it will be easier.
One of the most important tools in saving a relationship is communication. Talking about what happened, expressing how each person feels, and how the situation can be confronted are a few of the basic pillars of beginning the recovery process for a couple.
Advice for saving a relationship after infidelity
- Don’t make important decisions quickly. Wait until the first moments have passed. Calm yourself and reflect on what has happened.
- Accept your feelings of rage, uncertainty, agitation, fear, pain, sadness, or whatever it is you may be feeling. It’s okay. It’s normal. Life isn’t over because of what has happened.
- Take care of yourself and avoid nonsense. Whatever happens will happen; you don’t need to make it even worse for yourself.
- Look for ways to relieve stress that will also help you to see things more clearly.
- Try to find balance. This is key in confronting an act of betrayal.
- Tears are healthy, too. Crying helps to release tension and rage. Let yourself cry.
- Talk with your significant other about the fact that he or she cheated. Try to clarify what has happened. Although he or she may not want to talk about it due to feelings of shame and embarrassment, at least he or she will be able to see that you want to try to understand and fix things.
- Seek out professional help. When infidelity happens, the problem is not the act of cheating itself, but rather what has led a person or a couple to that point.
- Avoid playing the blame game. Infidelity generates serious conflict that can bring lots of dirty little secrets out into the open, and nothing changes by pointing fingers.
- Don’t commit infidelity out of revenge just to get back at your partner. It would not only not be enjoyable, but nothing good could possibly come out of it.
- Accept that any and every relationship changes after infidelity. Accept it and live with your grief. Mourn your relationship as you would a loved one. Life goes on, and you have to learn to live without that which has been lost. This does not mean that your relationship can’t be renewed and strengthened, but rather that no matter what, it will be different.
- Think practically. Maybe you and your partner have an intertwined economic situation, or you have children together, etc… If a relationship has resulted in the complete merging of the two lives of those involved, then, depending on the situation, it may be worth it to try to forgive in order to avoid more painful and difficult events.