How to forgive a cheater
When you are cheated on, your world is turned upside down, you feel betrayed, angry, hurt, and offended in the worst possible way. All you want to do is yell, hate, and punish your partner. The last thing you want to do is forgive and let go, every part of you yearns for revenge and you are resentful of your partner for causing so much pain. However, the only way to get over all the pain is to forgive. I know that is easier said than done, but forgiveness is a challenge you have to face if you want to move on.
Forgiveness benefits the faithful person more than cheating, it helps you heal and overcome pain. It doesn’t matter if you intend to give the relationship a second chance or move on to something else, forgiveness is a step you cannot skip. The only way to overcome anger, mistrust, stress, anxiety, and depression after a betrayal is by taking steps for forgiveness. Let’s take a closer look at some of the things you need to consider before you get to the point of forgiveness and how to forgive and move on.
Is it worth forgiving an unfaithful partner?
1. Is the adventure over?
This is what determines whether forgiveness is even a possibility; When the adventure is not over, there is practically no point in trying to fix things. How it ended is also a factor, did your partner realize their mistake and end things? Or did they put things on hold to calm you down or out of fear? These are all questions you need to answer before continuing. If the adventure really ended and the one who got lost has been honest and transparent about how it ended, what they will do if that person gets in touch, what steps they are willing to take to rebuild. Once these areas have been established, you can decide to take a chance.
2. Is there genuine regret and remorse?
The healing process only begins when the cheating partner understands the seriousness of their actions, regrets the affair, and shows remorse for the pain and damage it has caused. The cheating partner needs to acknowledge their mistakes and not blame you or anyone else for their mistake. It is important that both partners commit to preserving the relationship and taking constructive action to rebuild trust and address the reasons for the affair, to begin with.
3. Do you both genuinely want the relationship?
Both partners must honestly decide if the relationship is worth fighting for and if they are willing to do so. Just the commitment of a couple is not enough, there has to be a possibility of love and connection. Sometimes people stay together just because it’s convenient, maybe because they have kids, can’t afford a divorce, or because of financial security, but these aren’t the best reasons. You both have to be on the same page and want the same things. If one partner wants to love and connect, and the other participates out of convenience, there will never be a cure.
So ask yourself if you really love each other and if you can meet each other’s needs.
4. Your partner is no longer on the defensive
In case the cheating partner is still on the defensive and blames you for their behavior, then they don’t regret the affair. Sometimes they may feel sorry for hurting you but not for cheating. You have to be able to differentiate between the two. Consider repairing the damage; They have to take full responsibility for their actions and recognize that there is no excuse for their behavior. They also have to be willing to mend and heal for as long as it takes to run its course.
5. They are willing to be transparent
When there is transparency, there is the possibility of leaving the affair behind, the person who cheated should be open about what happened and be transparent about who he is hanging out with and how he spends his time until he can trust her again. Both of you should be in the habit of expressing how you feel in order to bridge the gap that led to your infidelity in the first place.
Forgive a cheater and move on
Forgiving a cheater and moving on does not mean that you will forget about the infidelity. It also doesn’t mean staying in a relationship you don’t want, you could forgive them and move on with your life or stay with them. It all depends on what you really want. Forgiveness is about being at peace and not feeling any resentment against the person who hurt you. Forgiveness is not for the offender but for the person who was offended, it is the first step towards recovery. Here are some of the steps you can take to get to the point of forgiving a cheating partner regardless of whether you decide to stay or not.
6. Identify what led to the adventure
For forgiveness and healing to occur, there has to be an understanding of what led to the affair, ask yourself what was missing in your relationship that your partner sought elsewhere and how it can be fixed. Most of the time, both parties in a relationship contribute to the problem. So take an honest look at the motives behind the affair and ask yourself if they can meet that need or maybe they’ve outgrown each other.
Marriage counselors say there are two main reasons people cheat: when their partner is physically and emotionally unavailable, and when the person has a commitment, attachment, and personal problems that they can’t handle. Understanding these aspects will make it easier to forgive and move on.
7. Know that forgiving does not mean forgetting
Forgiveness does not mean that you will forget what happened, it is not likely that you will ever forget it. It just means that you don’t stress about what happened and you can use the experience to grow. Trying to forget will only fill you with resentment, anger, and pain. Admit that you are heartbroken and that will lead to acceptance and eventually healing of anything but denial.
Also, keep in mind that forgiveness and reconciliation are two different things, if he does not value you and is not willing to change, then stick with forgiveness and leave it at that. Reconciliation should only happen if you can build the relationship you both want and there is a commitment to a better future.
8. Remember that forgiveness is a step toward healing
The only way to heal after infidelity is through forgiveness, it will help you rebuild trust in your relationship or for future relationships, no matter how you choose to move on. Cheating not only destroys confidence, but it also affects your confidence and self-esteem, all of which you have to rebuild. If you do not forgive, you will carry a resentment that will prevent you from trusting someone else for the rest of your life.
Forgiveness is healthy and with it comes the release of feelings that will follow you and drag you to the point of altering your character and affecting your health. Unforgiveness leads to anger, stress, anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, and generally poor health.
9. Be patient
The healing process takes time, so don’t try to rush it, whether you and your partner decide to work on your relationship or go your separate ways, you should give it time. It takes time to process that experience and get over it, you will have to try really hard, and to tell the truth it will be painful for a while, but in the end, it is worth it. Your happiness depends on the rehabilitation of your heart and this is not something you take lightly or hastily.
10. Let others help you
When we are deeply hurt, our first instinct is to crawl into a corner and stay calm, but that’s not the best approach. Seek help and advice from those closest to you, share your feelings with someone who knows you, and has your best interests in mind. Having someone to comfort you and give you advice from a different perspective is always beneficial. You can also seek professional help from a counselor or therapist, no matter who you choose, as long as you talk to someone and don’t hold it all back.
Dealing with infidelity is not an easy feat, it comes with all kinds of emotions ranging from betrayal to anger, confusion, and insecurity. Hell, even the cheating partner struggles with guilt (unless he’s a psycho with no feelings). Whichever side of the spectrum you are on, forgiveness is the healthiest way forward. If you were cheated on, forgive your partner and then decide if the relationship is worth fighting for or walk away. If you are the cheating partner, forgive yourself and work to make up for all the pain and damage caused.