Living happily with your spouse is a task as it is without the complication of parallel affairs. Was it a simple slip-up or a plunge taken knowingly? Either way, the betrayal of a spouse cheating on you is painful and can shake your reality severely. But even in the worst hour, you need to hang on to some hope and begin the process of healing. There’s only so much time that you can spend crying over spilt milk. Here are 7 steps to mending a relationship after an affair. The hardest part is taking the first step. Once you do, you’ll find things falling into place over a period of time.
For the one who cheated …
1. Apologize Unconditionally
If you are trying to mend an affair after a relationship, it is of prime importance to apologize without conditions, excuses, and reasons. An ’I am sorry’ that comes loaded with ‘buts’ will only make your partner angrier. You don’t want that, do you? You were responsible for the damage done, take full responsibility for it and be committed to mending it.
2. Be an Open Book
What you need most now is your partner to start trusting you again. Be totally open about your correspondence, emails, social networking and your comings and goings. Include your partner in all your social activities, thereby telling her that you want to hide nothing at all. This openness is a must do step to mend a relationship after an affair.
3. Don’t Be Defensive
However hard you may be working towards mending your relationship after an affair, remember your partner has had the worse hit and is smarting. So don’t be defensive or react angrily when your partner starts raving about the affair. Understand where they come from, just listen. After all it’s only natural for them to be hurtful.
For the one who was cheated on…
4. Take a Stand
Facing the fact that your partner cheated on you is killing. The tougher and more vital part is deciding if you want to reconcile. Ask yourself if you can trust your partner again. If no, are you okay with being with someone who you know may cheat again. If the relationship is worth rescuing, start working on rekindling the love and trust.
5. Let It out
It is natural to be ripped apart by the knowledge that your partner drifted. The feelings of wrath, frustration, confusion and revenge are reactions of a broken heart and need to be let out. Speak to someone neutral about your pain. Remember, if your partner has apologized, he/she are more than ready to talk it out with you and work through the pain with you. Use the advantage you have as the wronged one and let your partner know how hurt you are. It is of utmost importance that you let your feelings out inorder to mend a relationship after an affair.
6. Draw Boundaries
In a marriage, as with any relationship, both the spouses have a limit beyond which they cannot indulge the other without causing physical or emotional discomfort to themselves. It is therefore very important to draw clear boundaries so that overstepping is avoided, making it easier for both the partners to understand how much to expect from each other.
7. Do Things Together
On the way to reconciliation, get involved in activities that interest both of you. Go on that long forgotten dream vacation, plan it together and bicker over it. Go through your children’s baby photos and videos together, get a new pet or redecorate your house. Spending quality time together will get your mind off the nasty memories and help build nice new ones.
While forgiveness is the best medicine, never repeating a mistake is primary prevention. If you are successful at mending a relationship after an affair, you are heading for a much more beautiful and harmonious existence with each other. And after all, don’t we all crave for that special someone to grow old with?
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