This is a contributed post.
You did the unthinkable. You betrayed your partner and embarked on an affair. In the beginning, it was exciting and made you feel alive again. But over time it just felt sordid, and eventually, your partner found out. They are devastated, and your relationship is shattered. You realize your mistake and just want to make things right again. Is it possible to rebuild a relationship after an affair?
The simple answer to this question is yes. It is possible, and some couples do survive betrayal. However, it is a long and difficult process, and not all relationships make it.
Rebuilding trust takes time and patience. Relationships rely on trust, and when this is broken, it’s as though the foundation has shifted. Each partner must address the issues that led to the betrayal and work through them. This can be difficult to navigate alone as it brings up many uncomfortable feelings. To ensure that communications don’t break down, couples therapy can help. It allows each partner to share their feelings and their place in the relationship in a safe environment.
This is an opportunity for both partners to look at their role in the relationship, how they relate to one another, and to understand how the other is feeling. Often this begins with some inner soul-searching and exploring whether they are able to commit to the relationship again and make the necessary changes.
For the partner who has embarked on the affair, they must understand that this will not be a quick process. They must prove their fidelity and trustworthiness to their partner over and over again.
During the process of rebuilding, each partner must take responsibility for their own behavior. The betrayer must acknowledge their actions, understand the reasons that this came about, and admit their wrongdoing. They must be certain that this will not occur again and take steps with their partner to change the circumstances which led to the affair.
After an affair, the wronged partner is likely to feel vulnerable and insecure. They may not admit to this and may show it through anger and rejection. Therefore, their partner must take steps to reassure them. This is something they will have to do for some time. In addition, any new promises that are made must be kept. So it is important to be absolutely clear about this. Don’t promise anything you’re unlikely to keep.
Cheating Doesn’t Have To Result In A Breakup
Cheating doesn’t always end a marriage or relationship. It is possible to work through things and emerge stronger than before. However, it takes hard work and a serious commitment from both parties. It also takes a certain amount of resilience to believe that as a couple you are strong enough to weather this. There will be difficult patches, and it certainly won’t be plain sailing. But, if you can hold on and work together, you may find that a new relationship is created; one that is built on a greater understanding of each other and results in a renewed sense of trust.
Dr. Laurie Betito Quotes