Being cheated on is arguably one of the worst things anybody can experience. It destroys your self-esteem, mental health, and of course, your relationship. It’s impossible to move past being cheated on for a lot of people, and sometimes, the feelings and emotions associated with it never seem to go away.
But there is light at the end of the tunnel, and you can find closure, and healing, both as an individual or even as a couple, despite a tough roadblock like infidelity. The closure is important for you to regain a sense of self, balance the power in the relationship, and work through the issues that came up. Working with a counselor, you can also do the following:
Put yourself and your needs first and foremost
While some couples may see a full-blown affair as cheating, others may count flirty texts too. No matter where you draw the line, if your partner betrayed your trust, and hurt you, hold your own. You need to put yourself and your needs before theirs, whether that’s a need for space, time apart, or focusing on therapy, healing, and processing it however you need. Take time to appreciate yourself, understanding your needs, and getting to know yourself again; work through the insecurities the experience may have triggered for you.
Don’t rush to forgive without resolving conflict
If you’re still committed to your partner and want to work things out, don’t rush to forgiveness. Forgiveness is a later step along the way. Before that comes analyzing where things may have gone wrong, where communication gaps lie, whether you’re both on board with making it work, and much more. It’s a long, painful journey of self-reflection, honesty, and being true to your feelings. Remember that space we talked about? It might be a great way to clear your head.
Work with a trained counselor or therapist
It could get messy and awkward when you attempt to resolve things on your own or with the involvement of friends and family. Your relationship is entirely unique, and nobody can know the intricacies the way you do. Loved ones may be biased or could just dismiss your pain and struggles.
This is why you should work with a trained therapist who specializes in both couples and individual counseling and can help you process your experience with infidelity. Therapy could be the path to healing and finding a new normal, where you feel comfortable with yourself, your partner, and the future of your relationship.
Closure, therapy, and healing will also show you the way to setting new boundaries, honoring and upholding them for your peace of mind, sanity, and sanctity. Cheating can take a toll on relationships and individuals, and sometimes finding closure and regaining your self-worth can be a lot more difficult than we realize. Work closely with us as we offer you marriage and relationship counseling, depression treatment, and other services in Palo Alto. There is light at the end of the tunnel—our job is to help you get there.