Recovering from a spouse’s betrayal can be a long, emotional process. You will likely struggle with intense emotions ranging from denial and anger to sadness and loneliness. If you are willing to give your marriage another chance and want to fall back in love with your husband, the good news is that majority of marriages can recover from affairs with professional counseling, according to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.
Make Sure the Affair Has Ended
Before you have verified that the affair has ended, your efforts to rebuild your relationship may not be worthwhile. Have an honest discussion with your spouse to ensure that his extra-marital relationship and his feelings about it no longer exist. It’s also important that he no longer has contact with this person so that both of you can move forward in rebuilding your own relationship. With reassurance that the actions are in the past, you can learn to fall back in love with each other, according to the National Healthy Marriage Resource Center (NHMRC).
Foster Open Dialogue
It may be painful to talk about the details of an affair, but it will help clear up any uncertainties you have about your marriage. If your husband refuses to divulge information, it can cause resentment and distance within your relationship, suggests the NHMRC. Request an open discussion so that you can ask questions and receive the answers you need to reestablish trust in your marriage. It may also be helpful to enlist the help of a professional marriage counselor to facilitate these discussions. During these sessions, you and your husband can converse in a safe environment while working out any conflicts affecting the marriage, according to Mark Dombeck, clinical psychologist and former director of MentalHelp.net. A marriage counselor may also provide activities to help you rediscover the love you once had for each other.
Although your spouse was the one who had an extramarital affair, it’s important for both of you to look honestly at yourselves and your part in the marriage problems. Take ownership of your faults. For example, reflect on the time you both devoted to each other, the efforts you made to make the other feel appreciated or wanted and your communication styles. Showing remorse for your faults can help rebuild the trust in your marriage, suggests the NHMRC.
Date Each Other
Remember the butterflies you felt when you dated your husband? Bring back those exciting moments by dating him again. Designate one night each week for a special dinner, movie night or evening of dancing, suggests Mitch Temple, director of marriage programs at Focus on the Family. By increasing the amount of time you spend alone, the two of you can rediscover your attraction for and connection to each other. Small affectionate gestures throughout the day can also bring back the spark. A wink, smile or caress lets your husband know you are thinking of him.
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