Boyfriend-girlfriend or husband-wife relationships are inevitably confronted by challenges, and infidelity is one of them. There’s no such thing as a minor blow when it comes to our emotions and so when betrayed by a loved one, the emotional impact is grave.
Various angles of infidelity are being studied scientifically, but no singular and clear conclusion can be drawn. However, psychologists have inferred this: "Infidelity could be a regulatory emotional strategy used by people with an avoidant attachment style. The act of cheating helps them avoid commitment phobia, distances them from their partner, and helps them keep their space and freedom." This is according to Genevieve Beaulieu-Pelletier, PhD., a student at the Universite de Montreal's Department of Psychology.
Having been a victim of infidelity leaves the loyal partner with a weaker disposition. The relationship is threatened and the continuity or conclusion of the relationship depends both on the cheating partner and the one cheated upon.
The following pointers will guide you toward recovering from infidelity and restoring trust toward your partner:
- Step away from the dreary and confusing emotions for a moment. Try to examine your feelings before you reach a life-changing decision. Being cheated on normally brings about a general feeling of confusion and anger. These can lead to harboring negative emotions like insecurity, or retaliation. Before any of these harmful emotions can do serious damage to yourself and your relationship, ensure that you have carefully and thoroughly examined your feelings.
- Be patient. If you have thoroughly discussed the episode with your partner, and he has assured you that the cheating will never be a problem again, allow him to prove it to you. This may take some time but if both of you are set on repairing and keeping the relationship, time and patience is of great value.
- Do not hesitate to seek help. Find someone to help you while you work on recovering trust towards your partner. Schedule with a therapist, visit a counselor or meet with a close friend or relative. At the discovery of the infidelity, we can never trust ourselves and what initial action should we take. The thoughts and inputs of a third party is a healthy contribution.
- Communicate. You may feel that anything your partner says will fall on deaf ears, but try and begin a dialogue. In due time, you will be emotionally ready to start talking about what has happened. From there you can discuss the consequences of what happened, and what should happen next. Communication is a great key to know one's perspective.
These are just some guidelines on how you can rebuild trust after infidelity. Any one who has had this unfortunate experience can’t deny that trying to restore trust is a complicated feat. There are several possible outcomes for the victims of infidelity: trust is restored on the cheating partner; or trust is not restored on the partner, but is slowly repaired for future partners. But these rests entirely on the person and on what decision she opts for.