An affair shatters the trust and feelings of an unbreakable bond in your marriage. In order to survive the affair and restore the trust in your relationship after cheating, you and your spouse need to commit to and also make a conscious effort to do things completely different from the way it was before the infidelity happened. That involves being completely open and honest about every aspect of your individual lives. Meaning no more secrets, half-truths or outright lies.
It’s a fact that the rebuilding of trust in a relationship after cheating is one of the biggest barriers to overcome in repairing the damage after infidelity. It is going to take a great deal of work and effort especially on the part of the cheating spouse. When you lose trust you lose other wonderful aspects of your marriage as well. The intimacy disappears along with the ability to freely express your feelings with each other.
If you are the injured spouse, you may wonder if you’ll ever be able to trust your spouse again after all the lies and deception, let alone being able to express your innermost thoughts and feelings with him once again. The hard part about healing after an affair is that at some point in the process, the two of you will have to reconnect emotionally by sharing your intimate feelings with each other in order to save your marriage.
1. Stop the affair – cut all ties
No matter what you do, your disloyal spouse has to want to make it work out and that includes breaking all ties with the paramour. He or she has to be completely out of the picture for good, there has to be absolutely no contact what-so-ever with the other person. Some people even go so far as to have the cheating spouse either write a letter to the paramour or call them in front of their spouse and tell them that it’s all over. You should do whatever works best for you. You’ll never be able to rebuild the trust again if there is still any contact with the other person. A relationship is built on trust, even after an affair. Without it you might as well end it and go your separate ways.
2. Stop lying and commit to doing the necessary work
The cheater has to come clean, stop the half-truths and outright lying and be willing to truthfully explore what he has done and why he has done it. Even if the affair is completely over, it can be very difficult for the disloyal spouse to swallow his pride and admit that their actions were wrong, regardless of the reasons. Your spouse must prove by their words, actions and deeds that he or she is fully committed to doing the necessary work not only to resolve their personal issues but to working on repairing the marriage bond as well.
3. On being transparent
When rebuilding trust in a relationship after cheating, transparency is key, there has to be no more secrets or lies of omission. Your cheating spouse has to learn how to be completely transparent with you. He has to figure out how to be totally and 100 percent honest and prove it by his actions. That means not hiding emails, texts, phone calls, or anything else from you. Another aspect of transparency is to open up and freely share information with each other, before it is asked for. Dr. Frank Gunzburg goes into detail about how you can do this in his excellent surviving infidelity guide: “How to Survive an Affair.”
Restoring trust in a relationship after cheating is a process that takes time. You can expect to experience frustration, anger and setbacks, but by staying on the path of transparency and opening up and sharing your thoughts and feelings with each other, you’ll be able to break down the wall that is now between you and create a marriage that is better than ever.