Affairs & Infidelity

Healing After They Cheated

If you have just found out that your spouse has cheated on you this is what you need to do to heal.

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Great advice that will change your life if you have been cheated on!  If you have just found out that your spouse has cheated on you this is what you need to do:

Realize that the roller coaster your about to ride is quite a ride of emotions that thousands of people board every day.

Unfortunately, you are not alone…

The choices you make in the moment of discovery will impact what your road to recovery will look like, so choose wisely.

Remain Calm

Try to remain calm. Try not to say or do something you could later regret. But when you do have times where your feelings are mismanaged don’t beat yourself up. You are very normal.

When one minute you feel sad, the next you feel rage, and the next you feel numb you are not going crazy you are experiencing symptoms of trauma.  You will likely discover a host of different feelings all at once and at different times, again this is normal.

Avoid The Details

Avoid the sexual details about the affair, if there are any, discovering this information will be re-traumatizing.  

You also do not want to read e-mails, love letters, or other correspondence for the same reason.

This is NOT your fault they cheated. 

Realize that the affair partner DOES deserve blame for the affair.  It takes two to tango.  But bashing their face in will only get you time in prison – so don’t do it. 

Give Yourself Time

That leads me to this: give yourself 6-12 weeks before you make any major life decisions like leaving because you need closure and healing and if your spouse is willing to stay and work things out you could really be able to come away a fully healed person, so try to be brave, you can do it…and you owe it to yourself.

Seek support from a same-sex friend or family member who has been supportive of your marriage all along.This person should be a sounding board but should not take the place of your spouse because ultimately your spouse needs to be the healer.

Remember that the first 90 days are the hardest.

It is important to note that by talking about forgiveness in the next few points we are NOT telling you that you should just forgive, forget, and never talk about the affair or address concerns that you have.  

We are simply just giving you information so that you will know what forgiveness looks like and how it helps you.  Forgiveness may come tomorrow and may not come for years and years if ever.  So just take it as useful information.

Forgiveness is a Process, Not an Event

Forgiveness is a process not an event. It is not the shallow “Oh I forgive you….but I will never live free of anger, resentment, hard feelings, or rage towards you.” 

While all of those feelings rightfully happen they don’t free you from the pain of the trauma.

Forgiveness is for YOU.

Hanging on to bitterness and anger is life-threatening.  You have a right to be furious…but healing and forgiveness comes when you can work through the pain and find meaning.

The moment you decide to seek understanding of what happened you are beginning the forgiveness process. For your sake we hope you see it through to the point where you can say “I trust you again.”  

Think of that great day when you can wake up in the morning and be free of the pain and worry of infidelity.

Healing can happen even if your spouse has left you for the other person. Counseling can help you achieve that.

One last tidbit to make you feel good,the relationship your spouse strikes up with the affair partner is built on lies. 

More often than not they never work. Don’t take bitterness and resentment into the next relationship or into the new future with your spouse. You owe it to your family, your kids, your spouse, and to yourself to fully recover and heal.

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