Infidelity is a symptom, not an actual disease. Infidelity is a sign the relationship is broken somehow. While every couple goes through a relationship crisis: some break up, some manage to survive. If you’re stuck in a rut, wondering how to build a successful relationship after cheating, we’re here to help you out with relationship advice after cheating. But first, let’s take a look at the numbers that show the impact of cheating on couples.
The percentage of relationships that work after cheating is 23.6% in older, married couples. Only 13.6% of younger couples in committed relationships survive something so grave. Older couples, that is couples over 40 years of age have learned to compromise and empathize with each other. Their relationship has lasted longer and a mere mistake can’t take away all the good things they already share1.
But couples in their 20s do not survive infidelity as they haven’t yet been emotionally dependent on each other and have more options open. Couples in their 30s are the real demography that oscillates and can surprise you with their reaction. But given how effective couples counseling can be, you mustn’t let cheating spoil your marriage.
Moving On Together After Infidelity
Being cheated on will undoubtedly feel like your world is crashing down around you. Things like “how do you gain back trust in a relationship” might be racing through your mind, only to bring back more questions instead of answers. Everywhere you look, you’ll be told that successful relationships after cheating don’t exist, but we’re here to tell you otherwise.
If your partner or you really are determined to make it up after cheating, there’s no reason why it won’t work. It will be a long, hard journey but to work on a relationship after cheating is not impossible. If all you’re thinking about is how your marriage will be after cheating, it’s important to remember that you ultimately determine the path your marriage takes.
Once the trust is broken, it is hard to rebuild a relationship after cheating. Trust issues in a relationship spell doom, so to say. The key is to move on together after infidelity and not think as individuals. A certain amount of sacrifice and compromise is required for couples to build a successful relationship after cheating. If you can put love ahead of your ego or guilt, only then can a relationship go back to normal after cheating. Sometimes in order to rebuild trust and save your relationship from the brink, you need the help of a third party. That’s when counseling could come to your rescue.
11 Tips To Build A Successful Relationship After Cheating
Stories of successful relationships after cheating will help motivate you and make you believe that it isn’t impossible. However, just reading the tips for relationship success won’t do anything on its own. Both partners need to be willing to use the tips scrupulously.
Our relationship advice after cheating is to try to build a healthy relationship all over again. If there is love, a relationship can survive infidelity but you need to work on your relationship. If you only talk about the instance of infidelity, then you can’t move ahead toward a solution. Here are some tips that will make it a smoother process, and you should be able to build a successful relationship after cheating. We list out five tips for the one who cheated and five for the one who was cheated on. The final tip is for the both of you as a couple to rebuild your relationship after cheating.
Related Reading: 5 Women Reveal Why They Have Forgiven Their Cheating Husbands
For The Infidel – Winning The Trust Back Is Important
So, how do you repair a relationship after cheating if you’re the one who cheated? The following tips should help you do just that.
To rebuild a successful relationship after cheating, the first thing a person must do is apologize. You can’t set a limit on how many times you need to apologize, that’s for your partner to decide. Once or twice is not enough.
You need to apologize to your partner as many times it takes for them to believe that you are doing it from the heart. Once you have hurt the person closest to you it is bound to take some time and hard work to rebuild confidence again. So be genuine and frequent with your apologies. However, if your partner makes you apologize every single day for a never-ending period of time, it may mean they’re just not going to forgive you, which is a worrying sign.
2. Admit guilt
Just apologizing won’t help. You need to face the music by telling your partner exactly what happened. You might even have to try a number of times, as your partner might encounter rage and anger when you go into details. That is unless your partner refuses to listen and chooses to be in denial.
Instead of letting your partner live in denial, try to get them to have a conversation with you. To build a healthy relationship after cheating, complete honesty is needed. Only when you put the details on the table can your partner stop thinking about the exaggerated version in their head. And no, it is not about the excuses you make for cheating to justify the whole thing.
Your relationship after cheating, at least for a while, might look like a combination of fights, denial, and lots of crying. But that’s just the price you have to pay if you want to work on a relationship after cheating.
3. Be transparent
Be transparent about your intentions: whether you really want to be in this relationship or is it a sign that you want to move on. If you are going to stay, then you must admit to your partner why you cheated in the first place. What was dissatisfactory in the relationship? Were you looking for something that was missing in this relationship?
What change could you not cope with that led to such an action? What were you thinking? Without transparency, there would be no progress. To rebuild a healthy relationship after cheating, transparency is the key.
Related Reading: She Cheated On Him And Now Fears He Might Have A Counter Affair
4. Sacrifice freedom
Freedom is a privilege that you can’t take for granted. Like every privilege, it comes with certain criteria. But now that you have abused your privilege it is time to sacrifice your freedom to recover and rebuild trust. Unlock your phone, share your passwords, and so on. Most importantly, don’t complain about having to do these things.
These steps may appear drastic, but relationships after cheating don’t really look like normal relationships. To make it up after cheating, there might be some things you have to sacrifice.
5. Give it more time
They say, time heals everything, but it is not without effort. You need to give your partner time to heal from the injury you have caused. Pain makes people blind and vengeful. But if your partner chooses to stay. then they are doing their bit for the relationship, now it is your turn.
If you’re wondering “how do you gain back trust in a relationship”, it will only happen through time. Unfortunately, it’s not something you can rush.
For The Victim – Trusting Again
To work on a relationship after cheating, the person who was cheated on must believe in it. You might be extremely hurt and incapable of trusting, but you need to remember that time truly does heal all wounds. The following tips for relationship success should help you if you found yourself an unfortunate victim of cheating:
1. Accept the apology
We know that it feels like an apology is nothing after the pain your partner caused you but it is the first step. It is your place to tell whether the apology feels genuine or not. Take your time, don’t hurry, accept the apology only if your gut says it is genuine. It is not your duty to make your cheating partner comfortable in this scenario.
But if you choose to forgive and trust, make sure you do it from the heart and look beyond the indignity of being cheated upon. This is our most important relationship advice to you after cheating.
2. Be open
Be open to the idea that your partner can change. It must be hard to accept that right now but choosing to stay means being open to the idea of change. Things won’t go back to as they were before, but if you are open and accepting about what is to come, then you will arrive at a new normal. This would also mark the beginning of a healthy relationship.
3. Be self-critical
As we said before, infidelity is just a symptom, not a disease. You need to look at the cracks that appeared in the relationship before the instance of infidelity happened. You are never to be blamed for your partner’s infidelity: that’s their responsibility entirely. Nor do you need to feel guilty for their transgressions.
But you need to exhume the reasons due to which your relationship and communication failed so much that you didn’t even notice the change in your partner’s behavior.
4. Sacrifice ego
The pain that is caused by infidelity comes from a latent idea of possessiveness that makes you feel that your partner is your property. But you know, that is not the case. If you’re worried about what others will think of you when they find out your partner cheated, you should remind yourself that the opinions of others do not matter.
Our relationship advice after cheating will be to just think of you two. It is a problem between you two and the solution would rise from within you: Don’t let society put distance between you when you are trying to work it out amongst yourself.
5. Be more understanding
If your partner is making a genuine effort to get over this crisis and stay with you, you must know how important you are to your partner. Now it’s your turn to give support. We know that you have been cheated on but don’t let that spoil every other good thing that you have between you guys.
Cheating was out of the question when you two started the relationship: so try to think about what changed, where there needs to be more effort, where there needs to be more understanding to ignite that old spark.
Related Reading: What if I had never discovered my spouse’s cheating?
For The Couple – Build A Successful Relationships After Cheating, Together
Set definite rules
Every relationship should have boundaries. Define for each other what you truly consider cheating. For some, it may be casual flirting with a colleague whereas for others it can be sleeping with someone else. Once you have had a heart-to-heart about these things then there will never be any chance of a misstep. You both should understand the limits that you can explore.
Couples that survive infidelity come out stronger than ever. Trust rebuilding is resilient and nothing can come between you two ever again. From this point onwards starts a new chapter in your life that you are not opening blindly.
If you two still enjoy spending time together, you can maturely discuss the affair and want to work together to rebuild trust, your relationship can definitely go back to normal. Working on a relationship after cheating will test your patience, love, and commitment but by doing it together, you’ll be able to get over whatever obstacle is thrown your way. Counseling is also a great way of streamlining the process of going back to a normal relationship. It will help you work on the sources of infidelity and make sure trust is never broken in your relationship again.
The chances of your relationship working out after cheating rely solely on how much effort you two are willing to put into it. By being accepting, working on establishing trust, and improving communication, you’ll most definitely increase your chances of working out your relationship after cheating.
To build a healthy relationship after cheating, you must realize that things won’t really be the same. Improving communication and resolving conflicts maturely is the first step. Working together as a team and being understanding will help you build a healthy relationship after cheating.
The most important aspect is to rebuild trust. Figure out how you can do that with your partner and do not shy away from the challenge.