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The goal of this website is to give support to people who are facing problems in their relationship related to cheating, abuse and narcissism. I am living in Europe and English is not my native language, I wish you will excuse me if I make some grammatical errors. I decided to write in English because I wish to reach as many people as I can around the world.

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You have found out your husband or wife has been cheating on you or has been having an affair. You navigated to this page because you wish to get over the feelings of anger, pain, depression, anxiety and mistrust due to cheating. Perhaps you wish that your relationship will continue, but you are wondering if you can ever trust your spouse again. Whatever the details of your situation are, from these pages you find support and advice that will help you to get over cheating and to heal your heart.

There are ways to learn to control negative emotions and get rid of the mental pain and suffering you are now facing due to cheating in your relationship. If you wish to read more about this topic and to learn how one can control negative emotions related to the memory of cheating, visit page Recovery after Cheating and Narcissism.

The brain is truly an amazing device. It is possible to teach the brain to react in certain ways in certain situations, in same fashion as it is possible to teach the body to move in new ways for example while learning to dance, to ride a bike etc. I have a background in neuroscience and I am currently doing brain research in university in my home country. After experiencing cheating in my relationship I became interested in the way the brain and the mind are reacting during tragedies such as infidelity.

The key thing to remember is this: What you are going through is a normal reaction following a betrayal. Cheating in a relationship is one of the worst tragedies one can face in life. If you did not feel the way you do after your spouse cheated on you, there would be something wrong with you.

It can be that your spouse is feeling genuinely sorry for what has happened and wishes to continue the relationship with you after promising that cheating will never happen again. But even in this situation you cannot feel the same as you felt before towards your spouse. The memory of the betrayal keeps coming back to you on daily basis and is causing you strong mental pain, depression and anxiety. You want to know all the details related to the affair and to the Lover, even though hearing about those things hurts you even more.


The healing process after cheating

There are certain phases you must go through after cheating has occurred. These phases vary depending on whether both you and your spouse have agreed to try to continue the relationship or if you have ended the relationship after the betrayal and you are now simply trying to heal yourself, forget and recover.

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Phase 1: Initial shock after finding out about cheating

This is the stage when you feel completely lost, disoriented and crushed after learning about the betrayal. You feel strong anger towards both your cheating spouse and the secret lover. You may even become violent towards one or both of them. Your mind is full of horrible thoughts related to the betrayal, most of them being a mixture of pain, anger, jealousy, frustration, depression, anxiety and mistrust towards your cheating spouse.

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Phase 2: Attempt to stabilize your life after cheating

If your spouse has left you after you found out about cheating or if you have left your spouse

You are slowly starting to accept the new course your life is now taking. The feelings related to the betrayal (anger, pain, anxiety and depression) are still in you, but since nothing concrete is constantly reminding you of your cheating spouse (he or she is not around on daily basis), your recovery will be much faster than if your spouse was constantly around and you would try to make the relationship work again.

If your spouse has stayed with you after cheating took place and you are trying to heal your relationship

You may feel as a winner for a while and may even feel happy that your spouse has "chosen" you and not the Lover. You feel you have gotten over the pain, anxiety, depression and anger since your spouse has (most likely) apologized the betrayal and has promised to be faithful to you and never to cheat again. Deep in your mind you have only wished that you could somehow brush away the memory of the betrayal and that your life could be the way it used to be.

It is natural for a human being to wish that things would stay unchanged. The change can be a frightening thing, since it is always a jump to the unknown. You have gotten used to the life with your spouse before cheating took place, part of your identity is to be his or her partner. If you separate, your life will change fundamentally. That is a very unpleasant thought, and this is why you wish that you could somehow make things work again after the betrayal. For a while you are enjoying the "second honeymoon", a wonderful feeling you get when you think your spouse is not going to go away, that your husband or wife CHOSE you, that your life with your spouse will continue despite the cheating and as a consequence there will be no great changes in your life.

What you are not aware of yet is that your life has already changed fundamentally due to the betrayal. Your relationship to your cheating spouse will never be the same again. This does not necessarily mean your relationship will be worse, but it will be different. This is something you must accept before you can truly move on with your life, forgive, forget and get over cheating and lying.

During this phase your self-confidence slowly starts to return and you start to feel more secure. It helps you to improve your self-esteem if you are taking good care of yourself, both mentally and physically. If you see a healthy person when you look into a mirror, it boosts your self-esteem and reduces the intensity of your painful emotions. Even if you feel you have been neglecting yourself in the past, this is a good time to start to take care of yourself.

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Phase 3: Second wave of anger after cheating

You only go through this phase if you have decided to stay with your spouse after the affair and you are trying to make your relationship work again.

After some time has passed and the routine has again stepped in to your relationship, the memories of cheating and lying start to come back to you. These memories might make you feel extreme anger towards your husband or wife at unexpected moments, in the middle of making love, during a romantic dinner etc.

The memories of the betrayal will flatten your feelings towards your husband or wife and create anger, frustration, anxiety and strong mental pain. You are furious because your spouse cheated on you and lied to you. You thought your husband or wife (or girlfriend or boyfriend) is your base rock in this life, the one person you can always trust and who truly cares for you, and now all this has changed forever. You start to realize you can never go back to the time when you felt unconditional trust towards your spouse. The images of your spouse and the Lover keep coming back to you and are causing you great mental and sometimes even physical pain.

During the third phase of the recovery process you feel sometimes very happy and sometimes very sad. You are wondering if you can ever fully trust your cheating spouse again. This is the phase during which you are finally starting to realize and accept that your relationship with your spouse will be permanently different from now on. You are starting to accept that you can never return back to the way things were before cheating took place.

Phase three of the recovery process is often the hardest one of all four phases. It is important not to get stuck in this phase. People who cannot move past the third phase of the recovery process often end up becoming bitter and depressed later in their lives. If you are unable to move past this phase you are endangering your current relationship as well as all the other romantic relationships you might develop later in life. Do not allow the actions of your spouse to affect your life in a negative way any more than they already have. If you have felt depressed or anxious after finding out about cheating, visit this page to learn what you can do to move past phase three and help your brain and mind to recover faster: Training the Brain.

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Phase 4: Final adjustment after cheating

If your relationship has survived until this point after cheating took place, it has good changes of continuing even after the trauma created by the betrayal. During this phase of the recovery process, the memory of the affair is finally starting to sink into the past. If you are still together with your spouse, you are starting to adjust to the way your relationship now is, without longing for the past which can never return.

If you and your husband or wife survived up to this point without separating, your relationship has good chances of becoming even stronger than it was before cheating took place. But your relationship has also become very fragile and vulnerable should any kind of dishonesty occur. If the betrayal occurs again, the recovery takes much longer than it took the first time and in a worst case the healing process and regaining the trust towards your spouse may not be complete. And that is the way it should be: this is the way of the nature to warn you that you should not invest all your trust and love into an individual who is repeatedly letting you down, lying to you and betraying you.


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If you wish to learn about the ways to control your emotions and to reduce the pain you are experiencing due to cheating, visit page Recovery after Cheating and Narcissism. To read more about cheating and how the mind of a cheater works, go to section Cheating and Infidelity. To read personal stories of life with a cheating spouse, go to section Personal Stories: Cheating and Infidelity. To read personal stories of life with a narcissistic spouse, go to section Personal Stories: Narcissistic Spouse. To read about narcissism and how the mind of a narcissist works, go to section Narcissism. If you wish, you can read more about the content of this website and about my background from page Site overview or go to other sections by clicking Main Menu links (upper left bar).

- Maria

If you wish to submit your own story and get feedback and support for your situation or if you wish to contact me for any other reason, send me email to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

Comments (1433)
  • betrayedRN
    I Have been with my husband for 15 yrs. I found out last wek he was cheating on me for 1 month. They recently stopped talking 3 days ago and now he is begging to come back. I made the mistake of being intimate with him last night. I feel like i meased up the chances of him actually trying to work things out. Any help?
  • Anon  - reply to tore up
    Doug - i am in a very similar scenario. I have been married twice and both times my husband has cheated on me. Trust is gone forever...I will never trust again!
  • anon  - Mixed emotions
    I started dating this guy and I go away on a weekend getaway with the girls. I come back and my boy is distant. I confront him and he reveals there's another girl in the picture. He still wants me but is also unknown about her, he says he doesn't want to hurt either person. Like really? I'm hurt already. He wants me to wait to make a decision as to which girl he'll choose.
    What to do? I feel angry, anxiety, low self esteem
  • Anon  - it hurts everyday!
    It was july 2013 when i found out about my husbands affair with this girl,and also found out that its been almost 7 months,i hate that very moment of my life,i felt like evrything is falling apart,we talked about it and made some decisions he said that he wont leave us i tried to chase him away but he would never leave.We stayed together coping with the changes,but no matter how hard i tried to forget evrything the pain wont stop,it keeps on killing me,i lived with that til this very moment but changes keep on striking,i feel like i dont care for him but still taking care of him,im really confused,still now im always trying to leave and make hi leave but he keeps on staying and telling me we can still heal evrything as long as we are still together,but i cant understand why theres a neglecting feeling in me evrytime he tells me that,i really need time and space i know but i dont know how,i always wanted to leave but i dont know whats blocking my way,or its just because i have nowhere to go,i love him so much but he keeps on hurting me..i need some advice please..im really still in pain right now and have no one to tell..a little advice will be a big help for me..
  • Anonymous  - Forgive or Forget
    I have been with my fiancé for 2 years now. He has been my everything when I met him I was homeless and about 6mths in recovering from a very abusive 6 yr relationship but he stayed there with me thru it all. Which is why I could not believe he would cheat, especially because of him experiencing infidelity in his previous relationships however he did. The first time I found out I was devastated but we talked and because he us 4 yrs younger I chalked it up to him being young and my situation being touch for him to handle @ the time. Then it happened again with the same woman months later due to us falling out and being away from each other for a week. He says it was only because he was trying to get over me and that he knew it would be easy to have sex with her because she never told him no, all the while I'm in the house mourning over my broken heart he's out living the good life (in a week). Mind you are falling out was because of him. I don't know if I can justify his excuses as logic in my own brain. I do not trust anything that comes out of his mouth and although he has apologized I just don't know how to trust someone that has lied repeatedly :angry-red: :angry-red: to save face and has went back to a woman that caused us so much turmoil in the first place. Should I stay or walk
  • anonymous  - dont go back
    :angry-red:
    Dont go back, he wont change, if he has done it more than once he will keep doing it. I just left my husband of seven years for the same thing , He kept cheating with his ex girlfriend from before me because she always takes him in when we are having problems, he has left and cheated on me like five times, i left last year for eight months with our three kids, he begged me to come back for like the fourth time, but this was longest i had ever been gone. I went back and sure enough 7 months later, present time now. He is talking to her again. they get comfortable having a HOME to come to and having someone on side to satisfy their urges or need to break away from problems at home so they run off with that other woman. DONT GO BACK, i got my children out of the relationship and i love them but i wish my seven years had been spent on someone whoe cared for me. dont waste more time on him he wont change
  • anonymous  - How to let go and move on?
    My husband and I haven't been married for two years even and in the last two weeks I have caught him twice getting a bit too close to cheating. No, he didn't actually cheat but it still hurts just the same, especially considering that we have a very young son which obviously didn't mean anything to him. First time I caught him on an online dating website. He swears he was on there for a couple of hours and never talked to anyone, just looked. I got furious and asked him to leave. I said I am strongly considering a divorce and that we should talk over details and such
    Instead, he was avoiding me for almost a week and then on a Friday night got in a car accident which put things in perspective for me and I took him back. But then a few days later I saw that he contacted some bartender woman asking her to "go out with him to celebrate his divorce". We never even finalized the decision of getting a divorce, much less signed any person or anything. It hurts to know that divorce with me is worth celebrating. It hurts to have seen it in black and white that he called some other woman gorgeous and wanted to hook up with her, no matter how much he denies it now. It hurts do bad I can't stop thinking about it. I am scared for my son and myself. I work so I know I can afford raising him, so it's not that I don't want to leave him because I depend on him in any way. I love the family we had, I want my son to have his dad in his life. Not on the come and go type basis, but permanently. But I don't know how to move on from this. No, he didn't actually cheat, I talked to that woman, she said nothing ever happened. And that was the night he got into a car crash so I know he didn't spend that night with her. But the fact of the matter is that he still killed all trust and I feel like the marriage is falling apart. I don't know what to do. Please advise.... and please don't be mad that I am pouring my heart out here about being in pain when I wasn't cheated on per se. Not physically. But he did cheat on emotional level. Those Facebook messages I read were loud and clear that he was trying to get in her pants.

    Should this be forgiven and if so, how do I stop myself from constantly thinking about it?
  • Gail  - Would have been married 27 years June 7th
    My husband left us February 25th 2014-said he could not find happiness-found out which I knew he was cheating on me and has been for about a year. Why do men when they start to tell their wives that they only kissed them and then you start to get the truth-this is the the second affair first one we went to counseling so everytime I would bring up what is wrong with you why dont you show me any affection why am I hearing about these rumors at work about this woman he knew the right words to say to reassure me that everything is fine just under so much stress at work. Blah Blah Blah... I am done with this marriage now he is having regrets now because we have 2 sons that do not want anything to do with him a daughter that has no respect for him. He had it all and has lost it all and for what a whore!!
  • Marjorie  - He cheated.
    My fiancée and I have been together for 2.5 years. We met when we were in elementary school, we were in love then too. Things were perfect. He was always there. Always touching me, and holding me, and kissing me. Until one day it all just kinda stopped. I gave him everything. I tried to be everything he ever wanted. He said I was. We tried to make a baby. We had recent plans to Wed. Then he got drunk one night in November and invited a girl over to watch a movie alone, while I was out of state. He left the messages on Facebook. We took a 2 day break and I forgave him. He promised on his life it wouldn't happen again. Then, shortly after Valentine's Day I kept hearing that he had been latching onto some girl at school for weeks. Holding her and vice versa. It was true. I was devastated. He always cries, and begs me to stay, says he wants to die, and tells me he only wants me. Should I believe him? I mean, how can you do that to the one you claim to love. Why is he leading me on? Don't get me wrong, I love him a lot. He was my first love but does he deserve to be my last?
  • Frustrated and betrayed  - Broken Vows
    My wife was getting ready for work and she just out of the blue tells me she doesn't care if she ever has sex with me or anyone else ever again! I'm like okay, she then tells me she wants to leave me? She has been putting allot of effort into looking really nice for her job lately and she leaves for work. That got me thinking about us and I went to her computer and it was open and I hadn't checked it in almost a year as I never thought I needed to? I seen a guy she worked with was personal texting her on facebook 3 hours before she left for work, about that time she was sending him a picture of herself to him smiling and saying how excited she was that he text her. For the next 6 hours I watched this conversation while she was at work progressing into something that absolutely broke my heart. He wanted to see her naked? and I just broke down. She called me at her lunch hour and told me she was working late that night and I said ok. I never let her know that I was watching the conversation. I sent her a video of out 2 children playing and she text me back that they are so cute and she loves me??? Then she text her boy toy and said she wanted to go out drinking with him after work. He said he liked her grip, she said I like how you feel inside of me? He said balls deep baby, balls deep. He then asked her how her knees felt because he has an idea for the next time. At this point I typed on her facebook page that this has gone on long enough and they are about to destroy the lives of two innocent children and a husband. I recorded the conversation and 2 minutes later it was gone! She called me and said she was coming home to talk about it. She got home and said they were just joking around and it got out of hand and they never did anything?????? I loved my wife unconditionally and I know she is not this type of person. She begged me for forgiveness and I did.She text her boy toy the next morning and he responded with you are not worth the drama. He blocked me from facebook after I sent him a message about morals. I asked my wife why she was friends with someone that had worked with her for a month? She responded with I can't have male friends? I said do they have to be single. We've been together for 8.5 years and married for 7. She said she would do anything to save our marriage and 4 days later she left me when I said something about infidelity. I held up my end of the bargain she yelled and I said what? you think I can get over this in 4 days? Really!! I am so frustrated, belittled, betrayed. I really hate my life right now and don't know why she is telling all her friends we just grew apart. Really, that's the excuse you're giving? God, she hurt me. I forgive her or do I?
  • Denise  - I'm so sad, angry and disgusted!
    Hello, I have been with my husband for 16 years, married for 10. I was a virgin when I met him I was only 19. I was warned that he was no a good man but of course I didn't want to hear it. Well to make a long story short. He has cheated on me repeatedly and I have continued to give him chance after chance. He's a flirt and get's caught a lot being one especially on social media. He of course denies everything and has called me insecure and says that I act like a psycho. We have two young children ages 11 and 8. Part of me wants to make my marriage work but I don't want to live without trust. I know that I should let my marriage go.
  • Devo  - Let it go
    Let him go he will never change trust my you are not crazy day always call woman crazy when they cheat I seen this so many times day cum under attack so day attack us by sayin we crazy nope I no it's not easy but there is someone else better out there u can find and is better to be alone than with bad company
  • Paul  - so Sorry
    You need to leave him. sorry
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