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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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