Perhaps you’re here reading this piece because you feel all the guilt of the Universe weighted on your heart for cheating on your perfect husband.
There are lots of stories about wives who cheated on their husbands despite him being loving, supportive, adorable and loyal.
This feeling of guilt is natural, considering you’ve broken the trust of someone who loves you the most. Plus, you’ve brought a lot of pain and suffering on them and their sanity.
Guilt can also be a positive response, which shows that you deeply regret your actions. This feeling will discourage you from repeating the behavior in the future.
But however terrible you might feel about this, you should understand that, as humans, we are all prone to making mistakes.
From the onset of our lives, we’ve made life-threatening mistakes and we’ll continue to produce life-threatening mistakes till we leave this world.
Cheating is wrong, but it cannot ruin you unless you let it. As much as there are lots of stories about cheating, there are also many instances of marriages that moved on to survive the storm.
There are stories of people who earned second chances and made up for their sins.
So, instead of swimming in the feelings of ruin, use the same energy to figure out the factors behind your actions and how to fix things, which we will discuss moving on in this article.
Experts say that women cheat mainly because of three reasons: the first reason might be because they are unsatisfied sexually, while other reasons might be because of lack of attention/communication or a desire for a new and exciting adventure.
It might also be a result of childhood traumas, underlying psychological issues, or previous history of infidelity.
A study also indicated that women who cheat typically do so to satisfy an emotional need.
You need to peep inward and ask yourself which reasons inspired your action.
How to heal when you think cheating on your husband ruined your life
It is after you’ve figured out the underlying reasons behind your infidelity through introspection that you’ll have clarity on the following steps to take toward your healing.
Here goes your healing process:
Sincere introspection offers us room to grow and learn from our mistakes.
Being self-reflective after making mistakes can sound like a lot of challenges because it can evoke feelings of shame and other negative emotions connected to infidelity.
On the brighter side, it can also offer valuable perspectives that could prove beneficial in your future relationships, like being aware of the things you value and care about, the best way to convey them, and effective ways of upholding your boundaries and anticipations within your relationship.
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2. Forgive yourself
Forgiving yourself for cheating is possible, though it takes effort and self-compassion. Avoid wallowing in self-criticism; you will only lose valuable energy if you mistreat yourself.
You might believe what you did was wrong; it does not make you an awful person. Love is always deserved for you.
Accept your error, learn from it and concentrate on developing yourself. Recognize that everyone errs occasionally and that part of healing is to forgive yourself.
Show yourself the same compassion and understanding you would extend to a close friend who has erred.
3. Seek his forgiveness
It would help if you understood there is no need to try to cover things up with your partner.
Even if the truth will hurt so much and break things beyond repair, you have to come out blank and clean.
Telling why you strayed is the best chance you can give yourself. You give yourself a chance to emerge clean in this way.
Be prepared for his outburst during and after your confession. Be ready to sacrifice your ego in the heat of the moment.
You should understand that you’re at fault, and he deserves to express his hurt and anger, even if the words are harsh and cruel.
Even if he says words like he can never forgive you, understand that we say things we don’t mean when upset.
Allowing him to express himself freely will relieve him of his burdens and create new channels for dialogue. Don’t expect your spouse to forgive you immediately.
Be wary when he doesn’t show any emotions or aggressive words. Silence is a danger in this context.
Console and comprehend your lover’s feelings, demonstrate that you are sincerely sorry and be prepared to go above and beyond to restore the lost trust.
Sincerely and honestly apologize for your actions and provide a thorough and truthful justification.
Avoid defending yourself in any way, and make sure your apology comes across as sincere as possible. This is your only hope in regaining his trust.
4. Self Care
Adopt self-compassion and refrain from self-criticism when you forgive yourself for cheating, as it will only impede your growth.
Do away with guilt and hold on to the lessons you’ve learned from the experience. During this period, you can engage in activities you love to distract your mind.
Activities such as journalling, exercising and nature-walking. Do not seek to hurt yourself intentionally in any way to justify your penance for your action.
Practice mindfulness and meditation. It would help you stay healthy and stable to see through this period.
Also, seek respite from family and friends who would be sincere with you and help you on your journey of healing and reconciliation.
5. Seek professional help
Seeking the help of a mental health professional will go a long way in helping you heal, forgive yourself and rebuild your confidence.
A therapist will be there to help you analyze your thoughts better, figure out triggers for your behaviors and give some advice on how to move on.
If there’s any chance to heal and rebuild trust in your partner, consider seeking the help of a marriage counselor.
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6. Be patient & wait
The journey toward self-forgiveness and self-awareness might be unsteady and long. Still, it must be completed, especially when infidelity is one of marriage’s hardest offenses to forgive.
You must be patient even after you’ve done everything stated above. These are emotional and mental issues. Things that tear our emotions apart and traumatize our mental health need a lot of patience to heal.
You must realize that you should remain patient to be trusted and pardoned. Make sure you have enough patience for your partner.
If he asks for space, give him enough space and ensure you make an effort to make it up to him. Assure him that what happened won’t repeat itself by always being incredibly loving and sincere with him.
However, the most crucial question is whether your spouse can move on. Some marriages don’t survive infidelity and it mostly end in divorce.
Your marriage might not be the same after all your efforts of penance and reconciliation. This might be a hard truth to swallow and it’s not your partner’s fault.
What to do when you think you have lost everything after cheating on your husband
1. Accept the situation
You might be tempted to fall into grief and intense self-criticism at this point. Naturally, you’d feel like you caused it all and deserve it.
But since you’ve tried all you can, there is nothing more to do but accept it. Giving yourself time to go through the course of grieving is acceptable.
It’s okay for you to feel bad. You might carry pent-up emotions if you don’t give yourself enough space to grieve and move on.
2. Consider mediation
Consider speaking with people close to your husband who can mediate on your behalf. It could be his friend or family member.
Speak openly to them and show them how deeply you regret your actions and how much you want to save your marriage.
Make sure you speak to neutral and not judgemental people; they might add salt to your wound.
3. Life continues
Whether or not you would consciously want to, the affair may be a sign that the bond needs to end. When a bad experience occurs and is made public, it permanently alters the essence of your relationship with your spouse.
Moreover, the reason behind your infidelity might be a long-term problem that will affect your marriage in the future, even after you both mend things up.
For instance, if you cheated because you both are not sexually compatible or you cheated because there’s a severe lack of communication and attention between you and your husband, these two factors might not be readily amenable. It might bring more significant distress shortly, especially if your marriage is still young.
Ensure your physical and mental health are taken care of. During this trying time, prioritize self-care and partake in activities that make you feel comfortable and relaxed.
Get out there and mix with the world again. Speak to new people, join the gym or yoga classes, reconnect with old friends and keep moving.
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4. Don’t force anything
Help him and yourself heal by providing him the space or separation he needs. Usually, partners come together within a couple of months of separation if they think reconciliation is possible.
However, letting him go is better if he hasn’t forgiven you. Forcing things might lead to a vengeful marriage where he takes you for granted and seeks to hurt you in return.
In worse cases, it might lead to domestic violence or something more serious.
5. Seek emotional support
Isolating yourself can hinder your career, interactions with others and overall wellness decreases psychological stress.
Speak with dependable family members and friends who can provide consolation, empathy, and nonjudgmental support.
It’s the friends who see things from both perspectives that you need in this kind of situation. They understand when to support you and give you those reality checks regularly.
In addition to fostering your mental health and lowering the feelings of loneliness, emotional support will offer you a secure environment for expressing emotions.
Consider joining online or in-person support groups where people with similar struggles can exchange experiences and wisdom. Practice mindfulness and meditation to keep your emotions balanced.
6. Focus on your kids if you have any
Emphasis has been placed on you and your partner so far. However, children also experience emotional challenges during this period.
If you have children, you should find a way to communicate and support them. Seek their forgiveness and understanding too, because this might be a significant event that shapes their life.
Divorce or unrest at home can affect the stability and love your children are already used to.
Have honest and proper conversations with your kids. Assure them that their feelings are legitimate and encourage them to share their thoughts and worries.
Ensure you minimize confrontations between you and your husband in front of your children. It is best not to criticize your husband in front of the kids. To preserve their emotional health, foster a positive perception of both parents.
Your issues should be managed privately for the sake of your children. Pay close attention to any changes in your children’s behavior.
Keep an eye on their mental health and deal with any issues as soon as you notice them, either by being honest with them or by getting professional assistance.
Discuss with your partner how to go on with co-parenting.
7. Start planning for the future
Take time to reflect on what has happened so far, the lessons you’ve learned, your identity and your values. If you feel ready, explore traits you’d love in your future romantic partner and what you want in your next relationship.
However, remember to venture into romance once you’ve healed and prepared. You must be careful not to take past pain and feelings into a new relationship.
If your infidelity is due to financial distress, you should work on gaining financial stability.
The aftermath of cheating can be both a harrowing experience and an eye-opening one. You must endure the pain and consequences with caution and hold on to the lessons these experiences offer you.
Starting again can be a very challenging and complex journey to embark on. But you’ll be armed with the vital insights to aid your personal growth and renew your character.
If your marriage doesn’t work out later, this is essential for your next relationship.
Accept this moment as a chance for self-reinvention and set a path to a more meaningful future.
Remember that becoming a better person requires time, dedication, and sincere efforts to heal.
Finding redemption and starting over with a meaningful life is achievable by accepting responsibility and trying to make positive changes.