You may be in a place thinking is it worth it? So, can my marriage survive after infidelity? Will my marriage ever recover? Will we both be able to move past this and fully love and trust each other again?
If you’re feeling this way let me encourage you.
The answer is, yes! Your marriage can recover and even flourish after one or both of you has been unfaithful. That is if you’re both willing to put in the hard work.
But is your marriage worth all this hard work? Think back to why you got married in the first place. How you felt the day you said your vows, when you said, for better or worse.
I say give it your best shot and try to make your marriage better than ever! You can move past the hurt that your spouse or maybe even you caused.
I’m not talking about staying in an abusive marriage or staying with someone that is simply not willing to respect you. That’s a different blog, a different day.
I’ve listed a few steps that I believe must be taken so you and your honey can begin to heal and grow back together.
1. Tell Everything
Get it all out there, be upfront. You may be thinking; I don’t want to hurt him/her worse by telling all of these details, or won’t that make it worse?
I can promise you what will make it worse is having hidden lies popping back up after you’ve made progress. Anytime another lie or something you’ve left out rises to the surface it will kill any bit of trust you’ve earned back.
I don’t necessarily mean every ugly detail unless your spouse is asking you for it. But I do mean, every lie, every cheat, every connection you’ve had, etc.
2. Cut All Ties
In order to effectively cut all ties and temptations at the root, you must leave no doors open and no stones unturned.
You cannot still keep your “go-to’s” in your back pocket. You do not need a backup plan or a way of escape. This is a marriage, not a first date you may need a way out from.
So with that being said, block, block, block. Do not keep a friendly relationship on social media or anywhere in your life. Cut anyone that you may have had an inappropriate relationship with completely out of your life!
I know this may be easier said than done. You can develop feelings and care for that person deeply, but if you truly want your marriage to survive and flourish this step cannot be skipped.
3. Be An Open Book
Your spouse may need lots of reassurance they may even have some PTSD due to the pain of infidelity.
It can be difficult to do this especially if you’re more of a private person who doesn’t really express your feelings but, you must be willing to answer questions as they come up and do so calmly with empathy for their feelings.
Keep listening and talking, no matter if it’s been months or years. It will get better with time and effort but you never know when something will bring those feelings or questions back up.
After all, they love you enough to forgive you and try to make the marriage happy again, you must do the same by reassuring them and giving your best shot at being that open book.
4. Don’t Expect Quick or Easy
Forgiveness and trust are not something easily earned. You must be patient!
Forgiveness doesn’t mean they have forgotten or the hurt has magically gone away.
It means they have made the conscious decision to release their anger and feelings of vengeance towards you. Forgiveness does not mean forgetting, nor does it mean condoning or excusing offenses.
Actively Listen, listen to their concerns with an open mind. You must continuously work to help them feel comfortable in your broken(but healing) relationship.
Back up your words with actions. If you say you’re going to do something or that you will be open with them, do it. This is another way to build trust back.
No one ever tells you marriage is going to be easy. I don’t believe anyone that has been married over 10 years would tell you that marriage is a breeze.
One thing I will tell you is that a happy marriage is worth it. If you married a genuinely good person and you both strive to be happy and to do what you can for your relationship you can have a sleepover with your best friend every night!
Vacations with the love of your life, making a home with your love, raising children side by side. Doesn’t that all sound awesome? Well, it’s not a far off dream, it’s real-life effort, you can do this!
So please take this to heart and follow these steps as best as you can. I believe in you and I believe for your marriage.
Read here for tips on daily habits of a happy couple.