When you find out you have an adulterous spouse the mess of conflicting emotions you’ll have are so enormous that many people describe it like a roller coaster, or being in a small boat on a rough sea. You’re going to feel unlike yourself for a while. It’s going to take time to move on from this because your trust has been broken, and you’ve been hurt in a bad way.
You might find yourself doing ordinary things, but feeling decidedly out of the ordinary. You may feel as if you’re simply watching yourself move through life in such a way that you feel emotionless until you break down for what seems like no reason while waiting in line at the grocery store or when you drop the kids off at school. The emotions come hard and fast and are very conflicting.
You think you want to leave, but you still love them so much. The good in the marriage didn’t go away just because someone cheated. It’s all still there, all that you’ve built for so many years, and now it all seems to be ruined. But, then you see your spouse playing with your child and you feel a wave of love, then the next minute you feel a wave of hate. You can deal with these conflicting emotions if you really want to get through it.
Be Honest About Your Feelings
This is so important. Don’t just be honest with everyone else, be honest with yourself. You know yourself more than anyone else. You know whether or not you can get over this situation or not more than anyone. Take the time to be super honest with yourself so that you can know whether or not you’re going to continue to work on your marriage.
Understand That It Will Be a Roller Coaster for Awhile
There is no real way to stop the roller coaster of emotions right away. But, when you realize it’s going to happen you can at least stop the surprise from them. When you’re not shocked that you feel like crying at work in front of everyone, or you feel like punching a hole in the wall at work, however, your emotions manifest — then you can do a better job at not letting them take over during your day.
If you can, take some time off work for a few days. This way you can set a time limit and let yourself wallow in your emotions during that time. Tell your spouse to leave you be for that time period so you can punch a punching bag (with their face on it), or eat an entire carton of ice-cream, or just sit and cry in your wine for a couple days without it affecting your entire life in a bad way.
Work On You
Once you stop wallowing, get up and straighten yourself out. Improve yourself in the ways you’ve thought of doing in the past before the cheating rocked your world. This is not to say that your spouse cheated on you due to your appearance or lack of education or whatever, no – this is so that you can realize that you are a whole person without your spouse. You count, without them.
You may want to stay with your spouse, but your marriage will be so much better if you each work on yourselves and your own problems. If you choose not to stay with your spouse, you will still be so much better when you realize that you are complete on your own. Set a small goal and start focusing on that without asking for any support from your spouse so that you can see how that feels.
Stick To Your Guns
When you have come up with some things you want your former disloyal spouse to do in order to help repair your marriage, stick to your guns. You have the right to ask that your spouse separates from the person they cheated with, even if it means they need to find a new job.
You have a right to ask questions about the affair, even deeply intimate details. This is all going to be important for you both to move on, so you need to stick to your guns.
You don’t have to settle for a mediocre marriage. You also don’t have the right to become abusive, and there has to be a time limit set to work toward to totally let go of the past and move on either together or separately. A counselor or a life coach will help you both work through this in the direction you want to go.
Your emotions are going to wax and wane. This is a devastating situation to go through. However, it could be worse. Your spouse could be dead instead. While that might sound good right now, ask anyone who has lost a spouse, imperfect or not, to death and you’ll soon realize that you can get through this even though you have found that you have a wayward spouse.