Infidelity, Crucial Hazards to Avoid After Infidelity Has Just Occurred
Having just learnt about your partner’s infidelity you feel like you have fallen into an emotional pit or sinkhole made up alternatively of confusion, hurt and anger. But life must continue and as you move on from his infidelity and come to terms with it there are some
critical hazards that you must avoid if you want to survive the infidelity.
1. Acting emotionally. Your feelings are everywhere as you hurt, rage and cry but you should not act when your emotions are in this much turmoil as emotions tend to cloud judgement. Take time to go through all the different conflicting emotions and make sure that you go through each of them. You want all the negative feelings out, not bottled inside of you. Your feelings will range from anger at your partner and yourself to immense sadness and even tears. You are going through a grieving process and you need to go through this before you make a decision. Cry, rage, scream, shout etc. but get the feelings that you feel out, anyway that you can. And when the internal turmoil settles (and only then) make your decision about your relationship on the basis of your values and what you believe about relationships and your partner.
2. Paying evil for evil. Wanting to hurt him as much as he has hurt you with his infidelity is another hazard that you must steer clear off. Yes his faithlessness has hurt you deeply but if you spend your time and energy thinking of ways to pay him back then you cannot move away from this infidelity as your acts and thoughts of vengeance ensure that you keep re-living it. If you think that you having an affair in turn will equalize things then you couldn’t be more wrong as now you will have to deal with two affairs instead of one. Revenge is over-rated as you cannot possibly hurt him as much as he hurt you and doing things that hurt your conscience just to hurt him will end up hurting you. You actually hurt yourself by remaining stuck at the infidelity and the pain it caused you. You cannot allow yourself to become a negative conniving person. Do not let his infidelity make you bitter or unforgiving or revengeful or resentful. See the infidelity for what it is….a treacherous act that does not define you! Do not let the infidelity define you by becoming negative. If you let the infidelity change you, then you will have let it define you and it will always be a part of who you are. You may have met people who are still reacting today to something that happened in their past. You cannot allow this to be you and the only way to do this is not to get caught and entangled in the bitterness from the infidelity.
3. Letting him continue to cheat on you. Reacting in a way that allows more infidelity is another key hazard that you must avoid. This usually happens if there are no consequences for the infidelity. There needs to be some painful sanctions for your partner so as to prevent a repeat of the cheating faithless behaviour. You cannot let him go scout free as he will simply repeat the infidelity when similar conditions abound. His saying sorry is not enough, he must give up his cheating ways and make amends and rebuild the trust that he ruined. He cannot continue seeing the other woman or going to the places that he frequented with her. You must both agree on what he needs to do in order for him to make amends and build the broken trust. And you must hold him to whatever it is that you agree on that he should do. Whatever he should do must of course be reasonable and do-able so that you both move on from the infidelity. You may be tempted to have severe sanctions that ensure that he is on a very short leash but that will only breed resentment and his rebellion may come out in the form of another affair. If he wants to continue in his cheating ways then you must decide whether you will leave him or live with his cheating ways. If your partner believes that it’s possible to get away with infidelity then he will make it a way of life. And you will have to either get the guts to stop this behaviour or leave your partner if they persist. As they say “you teach people how to treat you”; teach your partner to treat you well.
When infidelity occurs the way you react immediately after the fact will determine how well you cope and how quickly you move on with your life. It will also determine if the relationship is salvageable or it is over.