Imagine you have just received a text message from a stranger informing you that your partner has cheated. Upon hearing this news of infidelity, your heart sinks and it feels like you’ve been hit by a train. Your mind floods with scary thoughts and feelings. You want answers: “Who is it and “Why?” When you confront your partner, they reluctantly confess the truth. You feel as if your marriage has ended. You gave your heart completely. How can this be happening?
Unfortunately, in my couples counseling work, I have seen an increase in the number of cases of infidelity. Both men and women are straying outside of their marriages. Affairs are leaving a wake of destruction for unsuspecting spouses and their children.
Building up trust after infidelity
If you’re the one who violated the trust, there are several things you can do to begin to restore the trust and integrity in your relationship.
- Listen and be completely present with your spouse. Don’t defend your actions, make excuses, or place blame. Take 100% accountability for your actions. Recognize and understand your partner’s feelings of anger and fear. They now feel very vulnerable. Provide reassurance.
- Offer him or her an apology. Ask your partner if there is anything they would like for you to do. What do they need now? Write this down and make a formal amends in a contract.
- Plan a time where you and your spouse can discuss the details of the affair. You want to openly share the facts. You may not be able to completely answer the “why did this happen?” question at this point. Counseling can help you gain a deeper understanding of your actions.
- Be consistent with your actions. If you tell your partner you are going to do something, do it at the time you agreed to do it. Keep your promises.
- Be aware that your spouse will go through many turbulent emotions. Be patient. Your partner will experience a roller coaster ride of emotional “ups” and “downs” that can be intense.
- Seek professional help from an experienced couple’s counselor or marriage therapist who specializes in helping couples restore trust and resolve conflicts in their intimate relationships. It can be very beneficial for you and your spouse to have an objective third party guide you both through the healing process.
I provide relationship counseling to individuals and couples who are seeking to rebuild trust, improve communication, and reduce conflict within their intimate relationships. Counseling therapy services offered to SW Florida (Cape Coral, Fort Myers). Contact me today for a no obligation 15- minute consult to see how if I can help.Please share this post!