The betrayed partner often falls out of the clouds when he finds out that his sweetheart has betrayed him. There are not always clear signs of this, so that a certain suspicion arises in advance. The bigger the surprise when it comes out.
Especially in long-term relationships, which are often idealized, an affair is more the rule than the exception. It only creates the impression that such things are of course not talked about in public. Of course, the reasons why this happens are interesting. So much in advance: The reasons for an affair are very diverse and differ from couple to couple. However, there are certain overlaps and patterns that can be worked out.
A second chance
Disappointment, hurt and anger are typical reactions that the betrayed person experiences in the first phase. However, the loss of trust caused by the affair is much more decisive or critical. The vast majority of people cannot or can hardly handle it if their trust in their partner has been misused in this way. As a result, the affair often leads to separation. Couple therapists and other relationship experts see the whole thing a little differently. These give a relationship a chance even after an affair, and that in a new beginning. For example, there are cases in which uncovering an affair even causes a shock, which exposes and thus exposes deeper problems of the relationship in order to be able to address such repressed problems for the first time. This is the basic requirement to be able to work on and process such problems.
Regain lost trust
The most important question for those who have cheated on their partner is certainly whether they can regain their trust, if the partnership still matters to them. It is definitely possible. However, it takes time, patience and work on the relationship to give the relationship a real new chance. Both partners are in demand here, i.e. the one who has committed a breach of trust, but the betrayed person is also asked here. Because it is necessary that both learn to think new and deal with this problem correctly, each from his point of view. It requires empathy and a certain diplomatic instinct to identify and name deeper problems in order to work on them. Since something like this can often not be mastered alone, the help of a couple therapist comes into question here.
Work up the affair
It is obvious that the incident must be dealt with in order to find out what is behind it, because in an all-round happy relationship an affair is unlikely. So there has to be some background.
So the first question has to be: How did that happen? The topic should be approached as openly as possible. Emotional blame directed only at those who cheated is understandable here, but unfortunately not helpful at all. As incomprehensible as it may sound at first glance, there is a good chance that the betrayed person is at least partly to blame, be it because of his behavior, how he dealt with the partner, the reasons can be very different here.
The second question must be: can I forgive him / her? In order to forget or forgive, it must be clear what exactly it is about, i.e. what exactly happened. Because something unknown cannot be forgiven, that is obvious. As long as there are ambiguities, the defrauded can embellish them with all sorts of fantasies and it is also clear that the person is more likely to assume the worst. Therefore – as painful as it can be – the incident should be worked through in detail with the partner.
Can trust be restored? The partner who was unfaithful is now, of course, in debt. He or she must do everything possible to regain the partner’s trust. This goes hand in hand with proofs of love, courteous behavior and of course a lot of effort to show and show affection. In any case, this should be done voluntarily, because surrendering to the partner and any pending desire for revenge is certainly not conducive to harmony. Furthermore, situations in which there is a risk of an affair should definitely be avoided in the future. This can be attending a party where the partner is not there or something similar.
Will everything be the same as before? That is very clear: no. Such an incision in a relationship does not change everything, but it does change a lot. The idea of being able to continue as before as if nothing had happened is unrealistic. After an incident like this, even a better relationship can arise if both are willing to invest work, but it will never be the same again as before.