You’ve discovered that your husband is having an affair and you want to save your marriage. But your first thoughts and reactions come fast and furious and you’re not sure what to do. While there are many things you can do to save your marriage after an affair, these 12 things will not work.
Trust Blindly That the Affair is Over Immediately
Just because the affair is now known by you, and even if your spouse has admitted to it openly to you, and even if they are sorry, it doesn’t mean they will end the affair immediately. While you will want to work on rebuilding trust after an affair, the first day is not the day to do it. Instead, set a time limit for your spouse to end the affair and ask for proof that it’s over.
Ask for a New Commitment Right Away
The time of discovery is not the time to commit to your marriage one way or another. Instead, you both need to take some time apart to think about what you want. Get some kind of help so that you can deal with all the emotions. Seek a new commitment when you are both ready to move past the affair.
Harp Continually Every Moment About the Affair
If you are going to get through this and your marriage is going to survive the affair you cannot attack your husband about it every second of every day. It is normal to want to discuss the details and understand what happened but you want to do this in a controlled environment at specific times and not randomly and emotionally out of anger and hurt.
Believe That You Can Control Your Spouse’s Actions
While both parties likely share some responsibility for the breakdown of the marriage, you still cannot control whether or not your spouse chooses to react to the issues with an affair. You can’t make yourself sexier, more perfect, or better and control your spouse. You can only control you and your actions, not theirs.
Participate in a Revenge Affair
The worst thing you can do if you want to survive infidelity is to participate in a revenge affair. It’s not uncommon to want them to understand how it feels to be punched in the gut like you have been but this behavior almost always backfires. If you really want your marriage to work, don’t do it.
Downgrade Your Spouse’s Cheating Partner to Him
While it’s not uncommon to want to lash out about the person your spouse cheated with, it’s best not to do that to your spouse. More than likely this person has no idea any truth about your marriage or relationship and is not at fault. They are not the one married to you. Your spouse is. The last thing you want is for your spouse to start feeling protective over their affair partner.
Compete With His Cheating Partner
Sometimes when women are confronted with a cheating spouse, they try to compete with the cheating partner. They try to become better looking, more sexualized, and so forth to try to attract their spouse away from the cheating partner. But, this type of behavior is not going to work long term to keep your marriage together.
Use Your Children against Your Spouse
Some women react very violently when they discover that their spouse is cheating and attempt to use the children to make him feel guilty. Worse, sometimes they tell the children about their parent’s behavior and turn the children against their father. This is a mistake and will not help anything. What happens between you and your husband is between the two of you and has nothing to do with how good of a father your spouse is.
Humiliate Your Spouse to His Friends And Family
Your private life with your spouse should be kept private unless you both agree to tell others what you are going through. While it’s tempting to call his mother and his best friend and tell all, it’s not going to help your marriage thrive after an affair. If he wants to tell people and come clean then that is for him to decide.
Threaten Your Spouse in Some Way
Many wives respond with threats to try to keep their marriage together. If you think that your spouse is going to stay with you just because you threaten to tell everyone they know about the affair you’ll be very wrong. People do not, even when in the wrong, respond very well to threats. Avoid reacting in this way if you want to survive the affair.
Confront the Infidelity Partner
Under no circumstance should you ever call, talk to, or have any interaction with the affair partner unless there is a special circumstance such as the affair partner being a friend of yours, or a relative. Even in this case, if you want your marriage to work you need to separate yourself from the affair partner and avoid confronting them about your husband. They didn’t hold a gun to his head to make him cheat on you.
Refuse to Take Any Portion of Blame for the Breakdown of Your Marriage
While it’s not your fault that your spouse cheated on you, it was their own choice, it’s important that you are brave enough to take blame for your part in the breakdown of your marriage. While some men do cheat, in terms of having one night stands or other situational affairs even when the marriage is going very well, most people do not have affairs unless something is going wrong in the marriage such as a serious breakdown in communication, lack of making time for each other, or other serious problems.
If you really want to make your marriage work, now that the affair is out in the open, the time for games is over. Now it’s time to get busy working on your marriage in an adult, open and honest way that will help you heal your marriage after an affair.