Cheating rocks the very foundation of a relationship. An affair causes partners to question the level of trust, commitment, love and respect that they thought they shared. Although it can be difficult to reconcile, it is possible for a relationship to recover from such a challenge. In fact, a partner's cheating can result in a couple growing closer and strengthening the bond that they had prior to the cheating. However, for this to happen, you both have to work together.
Talk About your Feelings
Your partner will definitely have questions and will probably try to seek answers, even without being mentally or emotionally prepared to handle them, according to relationship and family life therapist, Sandra Segall on the Montgomery Marriage Counseling website. Nevertheless, you should both discuss how the affair affected you personally. Your partner will no doubt feel betrayed and hurt. You will need to share what motivated you to cheat in the first place. Identifying the motivations and reasons behind the infidelity can then lead to the setting of new boundaries for the relationship and plans for how to avoid cheating in the future.
Allow Time for Healing
Time is necessary for healing to take place. Your partner will need time to recover and come to terms with the betrayal of an affair. You must allow him as much time as is necessary. Acting as if everything is back to normal too soon can result in imbalances and instability within the relationship, according to MayoClinic.com. Once your partner begins to recover, it can still take additional time for him to completely forgive you and learn not to dwell on the pain of the infidelity.
You will have to go the extra mile to regain your partner’s trust so that the relationship can continue to grow stronger. Achieving this will require an excessive amount of openness and honesty on your part. Segall suggests completely surrendering access to your email, messaging services and making yourself available whenever your partner requires it. This can help reassure her that you are determined to regain her trust and have nothing to hide. Being continually accessible and available also provide your partner with the extra attention that she likely needs during this delicate period.
Get Professional Help
Both you and your partner should consider committing to obtaining outside, unbiased and professional assistance. A licensed relationship therapist or counselor who is familiar with the issue of infidelity can help facilitate discussions, highlight the issues that you presently face and might face going forward. Relationship counselors can help couples come up with working strategies to help mend a broken relationship.