Even after you have vowed to end an affair, you might still find yourself thinking of your partner in infidelity. This can make it difficult to settle back into your committed relationship, and you might feel guilty about having this other person on your mind. To set things right again with your actual lover, you need to use several strategies to break your addiction to the person you had an affair with.
Break Things Off Completely
If you aren't careful, you might seem to leave the door open for future interactions with your affair partner, even when you intend on saying goodbye. For example, when saying goodbye, make sure that you avoid phrases like "Wait for me," "Maybe in the future," or "I'll always love you," says psychologist Lynn Margolies in the PsychCentral article, "How to Close the Door After an Affair." These phrases will keep you and your affair partner connected by hope.
Side with Your Partner
In your personal thoughts and your verbal goodbye to the affair partner, avoid blaming your actual partner for ending the affair. For example, don't tell your affair partner that your boyfriend forbids you to see her, says Margolies. Take responsibility for your own decision and refocus your attention on building your real relationship. Spend more time cherishing your partner by enjoying activities together and talking more often.
If intrusive thoughts about your affair partner continue to crop up, confine those thoughts to certain times of the day, suggests Therese Borchard, associate editor of PsychCentral, in the article titled, "12 Ways To Recover from an Emotional Affair." For example, if a fantasy tempts you in the morning, push those thoughts off to later in the day and limit it to 15 minutes of your time. In time, the obsessive thoughts will lose control over you.
Find Social Support
Keep your friends close, suggests Borchard. After all, you might need people to vent your frustrations to without upsetting your actual partner or giving hope to your affair partner. If you can't find social support, you can spend time writing down your emotions in a private journal. This can help you grieve and move on past your affair days. In a journal, you can also monitor your emotional progress as you break the obsession.
Mitch Reid has been a writer since 2006. He holds a fine arts degree in creative writing, but has a persistent interest in social psychology. He loves train travel, writing fiction, and leaping out of planes. His written work has appeared on sites such as Synonym.com and GlobalPost, and he has served as an editor for ebook publisher Crescent Moon Press, as well as academic literary journals.
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