Infidelity is the ultimate betrayal. Weather physical cheating, emotional cheating or a combination of both, the pain of finding out that your partner has cheated on you is second to none. Despite the sadness, there is hope. People can change, and relationships can get stronger. If you choose to continue your relationship after cheating has occurred, it is possible to move on and have a robust and secure relationship with your partner. However, before you move on, you have to begin to cope.
Here are a few ways to start your journey to wellness and happiness after you’ve faced the heartbreak of infidelity:
Reach out for support: This is not a time to be alone. Allow yourself to seek comfort in friends, family, recreational actives, or religion. Spending time with those you love doing things you enjoy will help reinforce the fact that you do deserve happiness. Finding strong emotional support should provide you clarity, peace, and strength during a difficult time.
Get tested: As uncomfortable as it may be, getting tested for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) after a partner cheats is imperative. Knowing your status can make it easier to clear your head and move forward to healing.
Pay attention to your intuition: If you feel uncomfortable or uneasy around your partner after infidelity is uncovered, or have a sneaking suspicion that the infidelity has not stopped, trust your instincts. You may be feeling a million different emotions during this time, but know that trusting your gut is always the right decision.
Don’t retaliate: Perhaps, the anger of learning that a partner cheated on you may encourage you to want to cheat on them as well. Attempting to “get even” with a partner’s infidelity with a transgression of your own is definitely not the best way to handle heartbreak. Being angry and resentful can only make your relationship worse and cause more pain than before. Being angry is ok, acting on that anger and doing something you regret is not.
Go easy on yourself: Issues such as anxiety and depression can be heightened to extremes during times of infidelity. Make sure that you’re aware of your well-being and seek professional help if you feel yourself becoming overwhelmed and feeling helpless. Talk to a therapist to overcome issues and feel whole again.
Seek help: No matter if you choose to stay together or not, after a partner commits an act of infidelity, always seek help in the form of therapy or couples counseling. Trained professionals can help you understand why it happened and what can be done next in a neutral and calm environment that fosters healing. Ensuring that you and your partner genuinely appreciate each other is imperative to the healing process.
If you and your partner are looking to bounce back after a moment of weakness, Couples Counseling Costa Mesa can help. We can provide you with the support, guidance, and structure you need to heal a broken heart and move on from the pain.
Patrice Hooke, LMFT uses practical honest feedback and focus on the strengths of my clients to help them reach their goals. I believe that with honesty, compassion and understanding, we can all find healing and have a more fulfilling life. She is especially passionate about couples counseling Costa Mesa.