Infidelity is a problem that often comes up in many relationships. Unfortunately, it is a very challenging issue in any relationship and it can make even the strongest relationships end. Having your partner cheat on you will bring about feelings of betrayal, anger, and even guilt. Various reasons such as temptation, human pheromones, feelings of inadequacy, and unmet needs, among other things, are often given as factors that could lead to infidelity.
No matter what reason is given, remember that there is no acceptable reason for your partner to be unfaithful. However, infidelity does not necessarily mean that a relationship has to end. Some couples can get through infidelity in a relationship with some hard work and persistence. Below are some tips on how you can help your relationship survive if one partner has been unfaithful.
- Stop the affair. No matter what reason may be given for the infidelity, the first thing to do to save the relationship is to end the affair. Unless this happens, there will be very little chance for the relationship to survive.
- Discuss openly. There will be a lot of bad feelings that will also be exposed but it is important to discuss what happened openly. Talk to each other about what happened and how it made you feel. Try not to point fingers and start blaming each other. For some couples, this is done in a more peaceful and productive manner in the presence of a therapist or counselor.
- Take responsibility for your faults. It is important to realize that when one person has been unfaithful, the fault lies not just in that person. Fault is often shared although it may not be equally. It does not matter who is more at fault. What’s important is that you both recognize your own faults in what and why it happened.
- Make a firm decision to move forward. Both of you should be firm in your decision to move forward. This is easier said than done because there will be a lot of times when all the negative thoughts and feelings associated with what happened will come back. It will take some time before any of you starts wearing pheromone cologne for each other but with a conscious and firm decision to continue moving forward and working on the relationship, that time will come.
- Have a plan. Together with your decision to move forward, both of you should have a plan. How do you make sure that it doesn’t happen again? How do you address the issues or reasons for the infidelity? Best of all, give yourself time to heal and recognize that things will not be back to how it was that quickly.