There’s no such thing as a perfect couple. Yes, I said it. If you’re married, deep down you know it too. Either you admit it and realize that what the world sees as a happy marriage is an everyday struggle to understand, compromise, allow, and forgive. Or you don’t admit it.
‘I cheated and regret it’, is a common afterthought among couples who are processing the consequences of their actions. Infidelity is complicated – on the one hand you understand cheating is an absolute deal-breaker, and on the other, you realize that you are going to lose people of the utmost importance to you – your family.
I Regret Cheating So Much
Getting over cheating, both as the partner of the spouse and the spouse themselves, is a difficult thing to go through alone. If you believe that the act is completely unforgivable, get a divorce and move on, but sometimes it’s the circumstances rather than the person itself that effectuates such a situation.
Try to get into the mind of a cheater. The cheating and regret stories are endless in our society, but hopefully mine can help you admit, “I cheated and I regret it”, to your husband or wife, and further take a decision that will be best for you as individuals and as a couple.
Related Reading: The 3 Types Of Men Who Have Affairs And How To Recognize Them
The beginning of my dreams
I too was like you. I thought I was living the happily-ever-after. So what if after 4 years of marriage, my wife and I had spent barely a year together? My work in the merchant navy takes me to various corners of the world, as does her job as a documentary film producer.
Distance makes the heart grow fonder, and despite the problems in a long distance relationship, we kept the flame burning. We were happy to still be able to steal moments, yearn for each other and avoid the mundane everydayness of marriage. We were both thrill seekers, after all, so this arrangement worked just fine.
Long distance makes a man lonely
Except it didn’t. I thought we had it under control, we could live like two lovelorn teenagers forever. But I missed the comfort of an adult companion, one I could share my everyday with. I don’t know when my heart began to look away.
I don’t wish to go into the details. Suffice it to say that I cheated on my beloved. Not just physically, but emotionally too. I can say it didn’t start as that. It was just a friendly acquaintance. Two people getting to know one another. I regret cheating so much but I know I can’t go back and undo my actions.
I can blame it on being away from my wife for months, being emotionally and sexually starved. Looking for a release. But I know how beaten and hollow that sounds. I’m a responsible 32-year-old man. And I failed. I failed at my marriage, I failed my wife and I failed myself.
I tried to hide it
When I saw my wife the first time after my transgression, I just wanted to run into her arms, cry and tell her I regret leaving my family for another woman. The affair had been short-lived for its own reasons. I’d like to believe my conscience was one of them.
When I saw her waiting for me, the magnitude of my stupidity hit me. But so did my shame and the part of me that said, “Save your marriage and keep your mouth shut.” I knew she wouldn’t tolerate a cheating husband. So I kept quiet, trying to enjoy whatever time we had. But she noticed something was off. And the more I tried, the worse it got.
If I tried to cover my guilt by being extra nice, she’d tease me about what I was hiding. If I played it cool and acted like nothing happened, she wondered why I was cold. My mind was my own living hell wondering, what if she finds out! The signs of cheating guilt were too evident.
Misery brought my marriage down
Marriage is a scary commitment. But nothing is scarier than staring at a guilty, ashamed, and disgusted version of yourself. I regret cheating because those two months were the most agonizing days of my life. Till one day, reality hit me. I was miserable and my wife knew it. Sooner or later my misery would take my marriage down.
Keeping this secret was not helping anyone. I had no confidante and I didn’t think I could get any worse emotionally if I told her. My marriage would crumble indirectly because of this, slowly and painfully with no one really understanding why. Was I saving her, then? Trying to be a hypocritical hero, keeping her from knowing her husband had been with another woman?
But she knew something was wrong. And it was too late to redeem my villainy. It was time to stop being a coward and own up.
I couldn’t hide the truth any longer
The conversation now seems like a blur. I remember practicing a mini speech, peppered with words to cushion the blow. But when I finally sat her down, words just flowed out. The dam had burst. She sat quiet, got teary-eyed for a moment, then controlled herself.
She asked no questions then but just walked away and shut her door. It was the best and worst moment of my life. Best because I felt so much lighter having confessed. Worst because I knew my marriage was over. I wasn’t happier for having told her, but I wasn’t any worse off.
And what mattered really wasn’t how I felt, but how she felt. The woman I’d promised my love, life and loyalty to. Finally, I had put her first. Cheating on her was my decision. But knowing the truth was her right. I just needed ways to make wife happy after what I had done.
She knew me through and through, she could see that I cheated and I regret it, and despite her pain and suffering, she suggested we try to fix things. It took a couple of months, but we have started seeing a marriage counselor, and I’m hopeful I will have an opportunity to make her feel like the most special woman in the world once again.
Guilt haunts the soul. Your partner has the right to know, and after coming clean to them, you will feel like a burden has been lifted off your chest.
Many couples have consulted a counselor that has helped restore the trust and loyalty in a relationship marred by infidelity.