How to Repair a Relationship After Infidelity
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Getting cheated on cuts like a knife.
You feel hopeless, betrayed and deceived. And you wonder if you’ll ever be able to move past the hurt and pain.
You thought you had a great relationship. You can’t understand why they would hurt you this way.
This is the person you trusted. The person you thought you would spend the rest of your life with. But now, you’re not so sure.
You have mixed emotions. You’re on the fence and not sure what to do.
Your first reaction is to leave. You can’t stand the thought of what they did.
It plays over and over in your mind, torturing you every moment.
You wonder if you can ever trust them again. You wonder if you can ever repair the bond you both shared.
But on the other hand, even though you feel like leaving, a part of you wants to stay.
You don’t want to give up on the relationship because you still love them. You’ve invested too much time, love and energy to just walk away.
You can’t imagine being with anyone else. This is the person you envisioned yourself with for the rest of your life.
And they may, in fact, be worthy of forgiveness.
Deciding to stay in a relationship after experiencing infidelity is an extremely hard decision.
If that’s the decision you’ve made or are leaning towards making, here are a few tips to help you heal your heart and repair your relationship.
6 Tips to Repair a Relationship After Infidelity
Has your partner cheated on you? What do you do after that to reclaim yourself and mend the relationship with your spouse?
It’s not easy to repair a relationship after infidelity, but it’s doable.
Here are a few steps to healing your heart and moving on to mend your relationship:
1. Consider Spending Time Apart
Spending time apart is often the first step to healing, so it’s worth considering this option. It gives you a chance to reflect and put things back into perspective and often causes couples to eventually grow closer.
Betrayal is traumatic.
Taking time apart allows you to clear your head and make sense of things.
Use this time to focus on your happiness. Do things that make you feel better.
Take a vacation or visit a relative that you haven’t seen in a while. You could even take up a hobby that you’ve always enjoyed.
Spend time with your family or hang out with a few friends. Do anything that lifts your spirits up.
This is your time.
Your focus should be on bringing your mental and emotional state back to normal.
Once you’ve regained control of your emotions, you can then focus on how to mend your relationship.
2. Accept the Truth
When you know why something happened, you gain closure by eliminating any unanswered questions.
Sometimes the reason why isn’t something that you necessarily want to hear or accept. It can be hard to face the truth.
Perhaps the cheating was simply due to your partner’s selfishness, in which case fixing the relationship might not be possible.
But sometimes the cheating reflects problems in the relationship that can be addressed and worked on. With enough effort by both parties, your relationship can grow stronger than it ever was.
A friend of mine called me one day and told me that she found out her boyfriend had cheated on her.
He told her the reason why he cheated was that he felt like she didn’t pay him enough attention.
So when the other woman came along, she provided him with what he felt he was missing from her.
This was very hard for her to accept.
She never even knew he felt that way. He never verbalized his feelings to her before.
So in her mind, this reason wasn’t good enough. She didn’t make him cheat; his feelings made him cheat.
This wasn’t the answer she wanted to hear. But the honest truth was that any answer he gave her wouldn’t have been good enough.
However, now she knew that they needed to work on communication. Communication is key to any good relationship.
And since then, they’ve made a conscious effort to always verbalize their feelings.
Problems are addressed immediately, and as a result, they are getting along even better than before.
Making this effort strengthened their relationship. And even though they couldn’t erase the past, they’re working on a positive future.
Sometimes you need to hear the truth even though it may hurt your feelings. If you work on your problems before they get out of control, it may prevent unwanted behavior later on.
3. Set Boundaries
This is where you draw the line on what will and will not be tolerated in your relationship. You have to set a limit on what you’re willing to accept.
It must be clear that unfaithfulness will not be tolerated. And in most situations, contact with the other person must be severed.
Creating whatever boundaries you feel you need is usually the only way to start over and repair your relationship.
My friend’s relationship was no different.
She figured if he loved her and wanted things to work, cutting ties with the other woman wouldn’t be an issue.
She told me there was no way she could’ve continued a relationship with him if he didn’t agree.
And unless he understood how important this was to her, she would’ve had to let him go.
She needed him to understand that their relationship had to be summed up in one word:
Respect is the most important thing in any relationship.
If someone respects you, they won’t cheat. If someone respects you, they will do anything to make it work and not hurt you again.
So she made it clear to him that anything less would not be tolerated.
Fortunately, he understood how important this was to her and agreed to cut ties with the other woman.
Once he did this, they were able to work on getting their relationship back to the point where they were happy again.
It wasn’t easy, and it took some time, but eventually they became stronger than they were before.
4. Accept That it May Be Over
In my friend’s case, she wanted to try and mend the relationship. And fortunately, her boyfriend was willing to do anything he could make that happen.
Unfortunately, not every situation will work out this way.
Like I said before, the most important thing in a relationship is respect. If your partner doesn’t agree with this, it may be time to move on.
If someone loves you, they will respect you. And while nobody is perfect, and people make mistakes, a person who cares will try their best to make right.
If the person you’re with isn’t showing any attempt to resolve the situation, this is usually a sign that this isn’t the right person for you.
This isn’t an easy conclusion to come to, especially when you’re in love and have invested many years with them.
You might’ve started a family or been friends with them since your teenage years.
It’s never easy letting someone like this go.
But overlooking respect will only hurt you more in the long run. It’s better to sacrifice the relationship than to allow disrespect.
Life is precious. If someone cannot see how special and valuable you are, they don’t deserve to be a part of your life.
5. Think About Starting Over
As long as you’re both on the same page, it’s possible to bring back the bond you once shared with some effort.
This is when you forgive the mistake they made, try to move forward and start over fresh.
Take a moment to remember the reason why you fell in love in the first place. This will help with the healing process.
This will also make it much easier to forgive them.
Take the time to reinvest in your relationship. Start going out on dates together.
Watch movies at home.
Take a long walk and enjoy time with each other. Cook dinner together and spend the night alone.
Do anything to ignite a spark. Bring back the passion you both once shared.
And before you know it, you’ll find your friendship, love and trust again.
Remembering why you were with this person in the first place will make it easier to move on.
As with everything, time will heal your wounds.
Giving the relationship a fresh new start will make it easier to leave the past behind and create a happy future.
6. Love Deserves a Chance
Nothing is worse than someone you care about hurting you deeply.
But fortunately, love is very forgiving.
Sometimes a bad situation can overshadow a good relationship. Every relationship has its problems.
We all make mistakes. And while some mistakes are worse than others, people often deserve a second chance.
If you’ve been cheating on, you can work on healing your relationship, provided your partner is also willing to put in the work.
If they’re not willing to give you the respect you deserve, then it’s time to walk away. Being too forgiving is sometimes just as bad as not forgiving at all.
But if you are both determined to do what’s necessary, know that all hope is not lost. You can mend your relationship.
It may even become stronger than it ever was.
Cheating may not be justified, but the relationship can be saved from jeopardy.
You need to give yourself some time and space, seek closure by accepting the truth, and take conscious progressive steps together.
Keep the communication channels open, have respect for each other, and try to be on the same page.
Finally, the healing process will not be complete without forgiveness.
Reinvest in your relationship and get that passion back because love deserves a second chance.
Over to you –
How about you? Were you able to move on from being cheated on? Let’s talk.
Disclaimer: Though the views expressed are of the author’s own, this article has been checked for its authenticity of information and resource links provided for a better and deeper understanding of the subject matter. However, you're suggested to make your diligent research and consult subject experts to decide what is best for you. If you spot any factual errors, spelling, or grammatical mistakes in the article, please report at [email protected]. Thanks.
Tiffaney these are truly some good tips. I like to refer something back what you said: “Communication is key to any good relationship.” So true. So many things could be resolved if both you and your partner understand the importance of good communication. This does not mean it will be fun or not painful. But learning to listen to each other and learning to speak the truth what you are feeling is such an important matter in relationships.
I do believe that love always deserves a chance. It has happened to me with my ex husband. After he cheated, we went for counseling. I knew it would take time but after three years of his repeated behavior, I just had to leave.
I appreciate the clear, actionable advice. I think that a lot of people who find themselves in this situation have no idea where to begin the process of rebuilding or deciding if they want to rebuild. I can’t begin to decide what’s best for each and every relationship, but I like your positive view and hopefulness about life after infidelity.
Love this post… I believe if each person takes a step back and forgive, everything’s going to go good. And it’s never too late to start over.
Hi Tiffaney, Harleena, and Vinay,
As someone who was blindsided by my spouse’s betrayal, I can say first-hand it is devastating. The event threw me into a depression, and although I am better now 2 years later, I haven’t forgotten what happened. It’s very hard to move on past a betrayal. Both parties need to want to make it work. Trust must be rebuilt. This is the hardest part for me. The trust was ripped out and it’s hard to get it back. No matter what anyone says, I don’t think you can trust that person 100% again, however, a trust level can but built. My hubs and I stayed together and continue to work on our relationship. Do I trust him? About as far as I can throw him but I can’t live in fear of what if. If it does happen again, all will be over then.
Thanks for sharing this.
Trust is definitely hard to get back once it’s broken. But just as you said, and as I emphasized in the post, both parties must be willing to work hard to rebuild the relationship. Even though you may not be able to trust the person 100%, by working on the relationship together you can slowly build those trust levels back up to a comfortable state. Thank you so much for sharing your story.
I agree,we all mistakes when it comes to our relationships.Most of us want to repair those relations,but,I feel such relations once cracked or doubted are like a glass which once cracked would be impossible to repair.
Would one be able to go absolute close to his/her spouse who has accepted being in that state with someone else not so long back?
Those feelings will never be same,even though one makes up.
In my opinion, a relationship is only impossible to repair if you believe in your heart that it can’t be fixed. Our minds are powerful and our thoughts dictate our behavior. As long as we believe something to be true, it will be. If we put in our minds that it’s possible to move on and forgive, then it makes repairing the relationship so much easier. Thanks for your comment.
Love will always be the way to victory. No matter the obstacles, no matter the challenges, no matter the pain, love will always win.
I do agree that coming to terms with infidelity is so hard as it destroys respect, love and trust but as you shared in this post, there is always a chance to make things right. As long as there is communication, commitment and forgiveness.
Thanks for sharing this awesome post. Take Care
I definitely agree that love always wins. Thanks for your comment.
It is a great article. I enjoyed a lot reading this and gained a lot of knowledge and courage after reading your post.
Now the major problem the youth are facing is relationship problem. They got emotionally attached with bad person very easily.
The biggest mistake they do in choosing a wrong person as their partner who makes them hurt. Often many individuals are not able to cope up this pain and suffering, they went to a long phase of depression and few of them end up by taking wrong decision. The tendency of having suicide is common in this phase which is inappropriate as well as shocking.
The tips you gave us will really give a sense of refresh and confidence to those who are depressed.
thanks for sharing.
You’re welcome Saurav! Thanks for your comment.
Thanks for this great post. I totally agree that forgiving infidelity would be a very hard thing to do. The only person in my immediate family who is married–besides my parents of course–is one of my sisters. But fortunately she hasn’t had to go through a bad marriage and I hope it continues to go well for everyone involved. Her husband is extremely supportive, and they now have 2 little kids. So that makes me a proud uncle!
Having a supportive spouse is definitely something to appreciate. Being with someone who understands how important respect is in a marriage makes things so much easier. Thank you for sharing.
A wonderful post indeed.:)
There may be chances that when people get betrayed by their partner then they don’t feel good to continue the relationship. But, you know there is always a way and the hope to rebuild the relationship again.
Though hurting your partner is a sin but still we all know that people do mistakes. You have mentioned some great points about setting boundaries and taking some time to think.
Have an awesome week ahead.
Thanks for your comment. Have a great week as well!
Hi Tiffaney, Hi Harleena,
I definitely believe a relationship can be repaired after infidelity but it’s going to take a lot of work and 100% commitment from both parties.
Thankfully, I have never been in that situation but someone close to me has. Although they managed to work through it, there is still trust issues and that’s what scares me. If I were to find myself in that situation it would be a hard decision to make. I love my husband very much but I know I would have trust issues so I wonder if it would be worth the try if I know we’ll both be miserable. Anyway, that’s my thought. 🙂
The suggestions you shared here are great ways to taking the first steps toward repairing a relationship.
Thank you for sharing. Have a great ladies. Hope you’ve been well Harleena. My schedule has taken a change so I’ve been missing you online. Hope we catch up soon my dear. 🙂
Yes, forgiving infidelity is a challenge. But with some work it’s definitely possible to get through it. I’m happy to know that you’ve never had to personally experience this. For someone who has, it’s not always easy leaving a long-term relationship when you’ve invested so much time and love. Hopefully, someone will benefit from these tips. Thanks for your comment.
It is always better to believe that we are human beings and human beings do make mistakes. As you rightly said that love is very forgiving. If we truly love someone, have we accepted that person with all the qualities and flaws? The outcome will essentially depend on the answer to this question.
Very well said. I definitely agree that we all make mistakes. Nobody is perfect. And I also believe that under certain circumstances we all deserve a second chance. Thanks for your comment.
Hi Harleena & Vinay,
Thanks for publishing my post. I really hope this will help someone going through a similar situation.