Did you know 17% of all divorces, are a result of adultery?
Surviving infidelity can seem like an impossible task. At least, that’s how Crystal felt.
It was already almost 10’oclock at night when Crystal decided to run up to the gas station for a salty treat. Knowing her husband, Jarrod would tease her for craving junk food, she was happy for once that he was stuck working at the office.
Yet, as she was turning the last corner to leave the neighborhood, Crystal saw something weird. There was Jarrod’s Honda, sitting in someone else’s driveway.
Crystal’s mind began racing with questions. Yet, before she could start searching for answers, the front door opened.
Skipping out from behind the front door came a woman with short curly hair, and following behind her was Jarrod. The young mystery woman and Jarrod held each other, and kissed, for what felt like an eternity.
Watching from her car, Crystal could feel every little piece of her heart break.
Knowing someone you love is cheating on you is already painful. Yet, when you see it happening, the pain is almost unbearable. Read on to learn how to fully recover after witnessing infidelity.
Surviving Infidelity by Getting the Facts
Anyone who’s ever dealt with infidelity is familiar with the nonstop questions their mind can produce. When did the affair begin? Are they in love?
Your mind can get stuck in a loop, repeating the same inquiries, over and over again. To help calm your mind, and soul, you need to find safe ways to get the answers you need.
Fast Answers Help
Depending on your particular situation, you’ll want to get as many accurate facts as soon as possible. For example, if your partner admits the cheating took place and wants to fix things, you’re in a prime position to demand quality answers.
Before you start bombarding your spouse with every question you have, take a moment to write them down.
Here are a few examples of the questions you might consider asking.
- When did the affair begin?
- Where would you two go?
- How did you two meet?
- Do you want to be with them or me?
- Why did you cheat?
After you write down all of your questions, you’ll need to decide what location is the safest for you to ask them. Remember, if you’re not willing to create the space to listen, there isn’t any point in asking.
Creating Space to Listen
Remember, infidelity is a highly emotional subject, so you’ll probably want to avoid public places. Yet, you may also want to avoid having the conversation in a location that is overly private as well. Instead, find a neutral location, like a friend’s house.
Enlist a Friend to Help
Because infidelity is such a tricky subject, you should invite a trusted friend, to silently attend your meeting. Having a friend present will help you from giving in to your emotions and reconnecting physically with your partner.
Avoid Sexual Intercourse
Having sexual intercourse with your partner, before you’ve healed the damage of infidelity, can make the problem worse. Instead, find a safe, neutral space, where you can talk, without any temptation.
Another reason to have a friend supervise the talk is so that they can help you calm down. When you’re feeling a surge of anger towards what happened, the last thing you’ll want your partner to do is to say “calm down”. Instead, you’ll want a friendly familiar face you can trust to coach you through the intense emotions.
You might also consider giving your questions to your partner over the internet, like in an email. While electronic communication isn’t as effective as speaking face to face, sometimes it’s the best option.
Another way you can create a safe space for your conversation is by going to therapy. With the help of a trained therapist, you can get all of the answers you’ve been so desperately searching for.
Accepting Your Emotions
How did it make you feel when you saw your partner cheating on you? Everyone assumes the main feeling that takes place is anger. Yet, in reality, there’s a lot of different emotions, and degrees of emotions, infidelity can evoke.
Here are some of the feelings you might be dealing with.
Emotions, like the flavors of food, occur slightly differently from one individual to the next. For you jealousy might be an all-consuming emotion, while for someone else it’s fear, that takes up the most room in their heart. Don’t judge yourself for the way an emotion makes you feel.
One of the best ways to accept, and deal with emotions is to acknowledge them. If you don’t know what you’re feeling, you don’t know what you’re dealing with.
Emotions & Journaling
The first step in identifying your emotions is to write them all down. You may notice as you write them down, a small weight begins to lift off of your shoulders. This is because writing down our thoughts and feelings is a therapeutic way to help us deal with them.
Self Expression Feels Good
Journaling can help you heal, and discover more about yourself. This is because when you write things down it gives you the opportunity to express yourself. As you’re expressing yourself, you are also managing your anxiety and reducing your stress.
As you’re writing down your emotions, you may come across some that you don’t have a name for. Whenever you have a feeling but don’t have an emotional name for it, you can jot down the thought behind it.
For example, if you’re feeling the word “why” come up a lot, it can cause a lot of different emotions. Instead of ignoring the feeling of “why did this happen?”, write it down.
You might say something like, “I feel like I want to know why this is happening.”. Later on, as you’re reviewing your notes, you might come up with an emotional name for that thought. Perhaps the feeling of “why” could be anxiety, or maybe even outrage.
Caring For Your Body
So far we’ve been discussing ways to help soothe your mind. Getting answers, and identifying emotions, is a wonderful place to start protecting your mental health. On top of caring for your mind, you also need to find ways to care for your body.
Seeing a loved one cheating on you is an extremely stressful event. When we feel stress in our bodies, it can affect our overall health. Chronic levels of stress are often the culprit of insomnia, headaches, and muscle pains.
Individuals who feel high levels of stress are also more likely to engage in unhealthy behaviors. It’s not uncommon for someone dealing with infidelity to find themselves overeating, smoking cigarettes, or abusing alcohol.
While these unhealthy activities may temporarily alleviate the symptoms of stress, they do more harm than good. To prevent yourself from falling to the wayside with bad habits, start implementing good ones in your daily routine.
Creating Healthy Habits
Here are some of the ways you can combat the feelings of stress, anger, or anxiety.
- Exercise daily
- Breathing techniques
- Self Care
If you don’t already exercise, don’t worry, you don’t have to become a gym enthusiast to start feeling better. Instead of trying to implement a major new exercise routine, pick something easy. A half hour walk every morning and evening, is a great place to start your new exercise plans.
Meditation is easy to do and it helps you still your mind. Once again, you don’t have to become some type of expert guru, to enjoy the benefits of meditation.
Instead, simply spend 5-15 minutes a day, sitting as still as you can. As you sit still, close your eyes, and focus on your breath.
Some days you may find it easy to meditate. While other days your mind will barely even turn down the volume of its thoughts.
If you find that you’re having a hard time meditating, you might want to start with some breathing techniques. One technique you can do is to take a deep breath in, slowly, through your nose.
As you prepare to exhale through your nose, go as slowly as possible. Continue to breathe this way 5-10 more times. Your mind, and body, will both experience a soothing, revitalizing effect from consistent breathwork.
An affair can break your ability to trust again. That’s why a big part of surviving infidelity is finding ways to restore your trust.
Here at Infidelity Healing, I know firsthand, how damaging an affair can be. That’s why it’s my honored mission to help victims of infidelity, learn to trust again.
Just the fact that you’re reading this article shows you believe your marriage is worth fighting for. Your world may be in pieces right now, but it doesn’t have to stay that way. Recovering from infidelity isn’t impossible, but it does take work.
Don’t wait to take back control of your marriage. Visit our infidelity and marriage resources page, and start finding the answers you’ve been looking for.