All couples start out beautifully. Each person loves the other and there is a belief that the amazing union will last forever. But as we all know in a year or two things start to change.
It’s not that we stop loving our mate, it’s just that since our heart is so open, we get hurt when there is a misunderstanding. Sometimes these disagreements can separate us and keep us from connecting. This is pretty common too.
But when there is a mate who feels they have to leave the relationship in order to feel good about themselves well that is another situation entirely.
People Usually Cheat to Meet Needs, Not Hurt Their Partner
Sometimes in my counseling practice a couple will come in and I will learn that one of the partners met someone outside the relationship and then the entire system falls apart.
Usually when one of the partners meets someone outside the relationship it is because this is something that brings them pleasure. It’s hard to believe that doing this is not the worst thing for the one who was left, but when the other person strays, they don’t do it to hurt the partner.
I believe that they do it because it is a habit that brings them relief. Unfortunately, when one cheats the other feels so much grief. And it’s not just grief, you can add betrayal, abandonment, sadness, aloneness, and feeling unloved to the mix as well.
Cheating Damages Relationships and People Alike
Sure, the partner who left felt bad about something, but you and I know that being with another person is not the answer to difficulty. What we learn in a relationship is that we have patterns and habits that are outdated. This pattern might have worked ten years ago, but now that there is a good relationship, it just creates damage.
Getting back to good with the original partner takes a great amount of effort on both people’s part. The one who was left must be real with their emotions. When they need reassurance from the other, they have to ask for it. The one who left the relationship has to be able to endure their partner’s feelings and there may be many of them.
With Deliberate Effort, Relationships Can Mend After Infidelity
But before that can happen, both have to decide if they want to work on the relationship. Do you want to rebuild? Or do you want to say good-bye?
If you plan on staying together, the one who left must be prepared to be real about what happened and talk about how they see that they hurt the one they left.
This can’t be done just one time. It must be recognized and discussed as often as needed. There is also healing that can occur, like when the one who left says in a heartfelt way how sorry they are. Or when the one who was left says they still love the other even though they are wounded.
People get through difficulty. This is a difficulty. It is not impossible. It is very possible.
Ready to Return to a More Secure Love?
Read a Book About Relationships
Communicate more clearly and feel closer to your partner, by reading Linda’s book, Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It just might help you connect and feel loved, cherished, and fulfilled in your relationship. Give it a read.
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Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.