You have just found out that your partner is cheating on you. Your world comes crashing down around your ears. What do you do? Is your first instinct to leave the house immediately? Assault the person your partner is cheating on you with? File for divorce proceedings?
It is painful and devastating, but such an event could be a reality in your relationship. Like all unfortunate events, cheating too must be dealt with in a rational manner, no matter how emotional you feel about it. It almost never ends well when you take decisions in anger or pain.
5 things you must do are:
1. Take some time off.
When you have just found out that your partner has been cheating on you, you feel hurt, angry and rejected. In this emotional state, you will want to take extreme decisions that you may regret later. In order to allow your mind to settle down, take some time off. Indulge in activities that make you feel better about yourself, such as reading, writing, watching movies, cooking, or taking a walk. During this time, do not stay in contact with your partner.
2. Introspect on what you really want.
Once you have gained control of yourself, think about what you really want to do. Do you want to overcome this disaster and get back with your partner? Do you want to move on in life? Your decision should not be influenced by the wishes of your family or friends. Do not be afraid to separate just because you have been together a great many years. Even though a fresh start may sound scary, you deserve to be truly happy.
3. Build trust again.
If you decide that you want to patch up with your partner, you should start the process of building trust again. There is no quick way to do this–there will be tears and recriminations, insecurities and guilt. You can try marriage counselling or couples counselling to help you work through your emotions.
4. Talk it out.
This step is painful, but it has to be done sooner or later. Speak to your partner about how you feel by his or her betrayal. Listen to him or her and pay attention to their side of the story. If you are trying to build your relationship again, you need to be on the same page.
5. Try to see the positive side of things.
Initially, it will be very difficult to feel positive about the relationship. You may lapse into periods of depression and hopelessness. However, once you have made up your mind to work on your relationship, you need to persevere. Be patient and do not beat yourself up about the situation–it isn’t going to help you.
5 things you mustn’t do are:
1. Don’t play a blame game with your spouse.
You may be very angry but whatever you do, do not speak to anybody you can lay your hands on about how your spouse was cheating. Talking about it with family and trusted friends is different and may help you sort through your feelings. But, airing your dirty laundry in public is only going to ruin your image.
2. Don’t involve children, if any, unless absolutely necessary.
When parents fight, the children are the hardest hit. Until you have decided how to go about this unfortunate incident, do not drag them into it. And when you eventually break the news to them, it is best to just give them the simple facts, devoid of any emotion.
3. Don’t hit your partner.
Much as you would like to beat your partner black and blue, don’t do it. It will not make you feel better. If only betrayal could be set right with violence!
4. Don’t discuss private matters with people.
It is distasteful to discuss the details of the betrayal or the subsequent divorce with other people. These are your intimate matters and should remain private. You can approach a certified counselor to discuss your issues, while ensuring that everything you say is confidential information.
5. Don’t think that your life is “over.”
Finally, your partner’s affair does not define your life. If he or she has cheated on you, your life is not “over.” You should look forward to the future with positivity. You have no idea how the future is going to shape up, but that does not mean that you will be miserable.
If you want to talk about your partner’s betrayal, you can consult our experts at AskMile for free!