There are no perfect marriages. Every couple must go through their own ups and downs and struggle to keep their relationships alive and healthy. However, one of the most difficult things that can happen in a marriage is to find out that your partner is cheating on you. Unfortunately, infidelity is the main cause of failed marriages all around the world.
In the U.S. alone, couples separate in more than 40% of all cases, mostly because of infidelity. But pointing out the statistics is not the point here — the emotions that come with the knowledge that your loved one betrayed you can indeed mean a painful healing process. In this article, we will explain what causes infidelity and more importantly how to deal with it.
How to Overcome Betrayal
When you face the fact that your spouse cheated on you, it may feel like the world is falling apart. Marriage counselors at Aussie Writings recently stated, “Betrayed partners lose the ground under their feet and the most important thing is to help them to overcome this initial phase of pain and confusion. But how long it takes to recover completely depends on their own characters and willpower.” Since this recovery process is deeply personal, it may be helpful to know a few things about infidelity.
1. Try to understand the reason.
If you want to solve a problem, you must first understand it. There are many reasons for infidelity but the problem is usually emotional or physical. Most of the time, people who cheat on their spouses say that they feel emotional detachment. On the other side, some betray their partners due to a lack of sexual attraction.
Regardless of the reason, you should understand it, think about it, and eventually deal with it. It may seem illogical at first but it’s actually easier to cope with this issue once you get to think about it rationally. Even though it is going to hurt badly, don’t hesitate to analyze the reason for infidelity — it really helps in the long run.
2. Do your best to face your new reality.
A failed marriage often feels like a small personal catastrophe. Many married persons occasionally fantasize about cheating on their spouses but some also take the next step and act on these hidden desires. However, if you have been hurt by your spouse’s infidelity, being honest with yourself (as difficult as it may be) is usually the best way to begin the healing process.
3. Express your anger.
When you feel betrayed by a partner’s infidelity, one of the worst things someone can tell you during this situation is to stay cool or calm down. Infidelity is not something you must accept without a strong emotional reaction. If you feel like crying, just cry. If you feel like yelling, who can stop you? Don’t let the pain eat you from the inside out. But if you do let express your anger freely, make sure you know your limits.
4. Find new personal goals.
It’s not easy to go on with your everyday activities after you learn that the partner betrayed you. But for your own personal well-being, you will eventually have to get back into some form of a routine. Our suggestion is to begin doing things you could never do while you were married. It doesn’t matter what it is — a horseback riding course, painting, or traveling through Africa. Do whatever you consider exciting and refreshing. It will not make you forget what happened but it will add spice to your life and give you energy that will help you as you go through the hard times.
5. Don’t feel guilty.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of making self-accusations when you find out that the spouse is cheating on you. On many occasions, you will tell yourself that the partner wasn’t loyal because of your flaws or constant grinding. But this is neither productive nor helpful for healing.
If your partner had problems with your marriage, they bear some responsibility for telling you about it. A major benefit of a romantic relationship is that you enjoy each other’s company as often as possible — but to do this, you must also be able to solve problems and mutual misunderstandings together. Committing infidelity is not the way to make it right when things go wrong. On the contrary, such actions often only make a situation worse.
6. Adopt a different perspective.
Another way to emotionally process a partner’s infidelity is to try to adopt a different perspective. For instance, some of the most notable stories in history are dedicated to the topic. Remember how Anna Karenina fought the social norms in the 19th century Russia to be with her Count Vronsky? Such examples — while sometimes painful to learn about — may also give you strength and encouragement as you try to deal with your own pain.
There’s no denying that dealing with infidelity can be an extremely painful and emotional process, and may even have a devastating effect on a person’s health. That’s why it’s wise to implement strategies for processing difficult emotions as soon as possible. Truly, the sooner you are able to heal, the sooner you will be able to move forward.
About the Author: Olivia Ryan is a journalist who is always ready to experience new things — and share those experiences with others. She is passionate about art and writing. Therefore, she usually spends time writing new articles or traveling around the world. Follow Olivia on Facebook and Twitter.