You didn’t cause her behavior, but affairs are often a symptom of underlying issues in the relationship that have not been addressed
1. Understand the reality of this affair. It does make a difference if she had sex with Rupert Sanders or not. Most of the reports claim that Kristen did not have sex with him. If she didn’t have sex with the other guy, it is still infidelity, but not nearly as damaging.
If she did have sex with him, that is really difficult to get over, but it can be done if it isn’t a behavioral pattern. The rule of thumb with affairs is this: if it happens once, you can get over it. If it happens twice or more, it’s a pattern, and you can’t get over it because it will happen again.
2. Make a decision about her character. If you believe that she’s fundamentally untrustworthy, move on. You will always feel like you’re settling and she will feel like she can never prove herself.
However, if you believe that she made this one mistake, but overall you know her to be a person of integrity and someone you can trust, then embrace the person you know her to be. Set aside the mind-chatter about what she did with this guy and return to your previous mindset of who she is — a woman you can trust and love.
Guard your thoughts and feelings about her and never let yourself doubt her again. Your love and trust will lift her up and she will shine.
3. Take responsibility for your side of this. You didn’t cause her behavior, but affairs are often a symptom of underlying issues in the relationship that have not been addressed.
Look hard in the mirror and ask yourself what, if anything, you may have done or not done that contributed to her seeking intimacy with another man. If you can work on your side of the fence, it will only strengthen your relationship going forward.
4. Fix the underlying issue. First of all, kudos to you. For the public apology and for being responsible and accountable. Now, your job is to assess what drove the behavior in the first place. Some possible causes are emotional insecurity driving you to seek constant adoration from a male, lack of communication in your primary relationship or serious doubts about your primary relationship that you didn’t want to confront
5. Don’t expect instant trust just because you’ve made amends. One common mistake of those who cheat is apologizing once or twice and then expecting it to be all okay again with their partners. Realize that his emotions may lag behind yours.
He may have flashbacks to seeing those pictures and feel the betrayal all over again. Make room and space in your heart and emotions to comfort him when he feels that way. New relationship experiences and intimacy should replace the bad images, but that takes time.
6. Don’t grovel endlessly. This will sound like a contradiction to my previous tip, but it’s not. Eventually, the offender has to stop apologizing. It’s demeaning to you to grovel and beg for forgiveness for months on end.
There is a responsibility that your partner has to decide, forgive and move on. At some point, if that isn’t happening, you have to bring that to his attention, firmly and lovingly.
Long-term, loving relationships take commitment and work. Post-affair, a couple can forge a new connection that is far more honest and far healthier. Most couples need help with this process, so if this happens in your relationship, get professional guidance. Seek out and gain support from people who will empower your journey to reunite in love and renewed commitment.
If you follow these steps, you have a great shot at putting your relationship back together.
Read this article in Your Tango
Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.