When you’re in a relationship, you hope for fidelity and loyalty. However, cheating happens more often than we’d like to admit, and it can take a toll on your mental wellbeing. Finding a way to emotional recovery is essential for moving forward and overcoming the heartache.
Experiencing infidelity in your relationship is one of the hardest things you’ll ever go through. You can overcome it, though, but the process won’t be easy. You must decide what step to take next, but you also must focus on emotional recovery.
Moving on is essential no matter what you decide to do next. You must let go of anger and embrace your situation as a new beginning. Moving on might not seem possible at first, but you can make it happen.
If your partner has been unfaithful, you must prioritize your physical and emotional wellbeing over anything else. Even if you only suspect something is up, start prioritizing yourself right away. When you put yourself first, you’ll start the path to emotional recovery from cheating.
Ten Steps to Emotional Recovery After Your Partner Cheats
Cheating can drastically alter your emotions, making it hard to get over the situation. The experience is shattering because you can’t undo it no matter how much you want it to be. Plus, the grieving process can be long and hard, especially if there are many good memories to look back on.
However, there are ways to make it easier to deal with and experience less pain. These steps can help you with emotional recovery from cheating, helping you move on and let go.
1. Rediscover Who You Are
Being cheated on can diminish your self-esteem, so take the time to rediscover who you are. Explore hobbies and interests you didn’t take the time for during your relationship. Focus on things that make you feel confident and sure of yourself, as it’ll help you rediscover yourself sooner.
Consider the things in your life that make you feel the most like yourself. It might be cooking, spending time with loved ones, dancing, or anything else you enjoy. Filling your life with these positive experiences can help you move on and rediscover yourself.
Building new connections as you rediscover who you are can help you find meaning in your life outside of the relationship. Being in a relationship isn’t the only meaningful thing in life, and you’ll feel better when you invest yourself in other areas.
2. Give Yourself Time and Grace
You can heal from infidelity but still experience pain when thinking about it. It might hurt for a while, so give yourself time to overcome and let go of the pain. Healing is a process that takes different amounts of time for everyone, so be patient and give yourself grace along the way.
3. Speak to a Professional
The emotions that come with emotional recovery are intense and heavy. It’s sometimes more than you can handle alone, and a therapist can help guide you through it. You can feel confident that you’re moving on in a healthy way when you get professional help.
A professional can give you advice specific to your situation. If you get lost in your thoughts, a therapist can help you work through them as they offer insight others can’t.
4. Work Toward Forgiveness
You can forgive someone for cheating without staying in the relationship, so this step works for everyone. If you choose to stay, you’ll want to forgive and work on building your relationship back. However, forgiveness is just as important if you decide to leave the relationship.
Forgiveness takes time, so don’t rush the process and assume it happens automatically. You must focus on building your life and finding meaning again to make it happen. When you forgive, it takes power away from the person who hurt you as you won’t experience pain from them anymore.
While you might want to get even, it won’t help you get any closer to forgiveness. You might want to act out in anger and do things to hurt them in return, but you should avoid it. It won’t do you any good, and it’ll only slow down your emotional recovery.
5. Get Tested for Sexually Transmitted Infections
While the emotional aspect of being cheated on is overwhelming, there are still other things to deal with. When your significant other has other sexual partners, it increases your risk of developing sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Getting tested allows you to take control of the situation by ensuring you’re free of disease.
If you get tested and find out that you have an STI, you can begin treatment immediately. However, if your results come back clear, you can eliminate that worry from your life.
6. Turn to Your Loved Ones
When your partner cheats, spending time with your loved ones can help you on your road to emotional recovery. However, please don’t rush off to everyone you know and give them all of the details of what happened. Choose a few close people in your life to confide in and lean on them when times get hard.
It might be tempting to isolate yourself as you experience a rollercoaster of emotions, but it’s not going to help. You don’t have to go through the healing process alone, so reach out for support or company.
7. Take Time to Decide What You Want to Do About Your Relationship
Part of emotional recovery is also deciding if you want to stay in the relationship. Sometimes it’s possible to repair the damage and stay together, but you must consider if it will work. You must first talk to your partner to figure out why it happened and how you can repair it together.
It’s essential that you feel safe and loved in your relationship, and if those things aren’t present, it isn’t beneficial. Either way, it’s a tough choice to make, but it’ll help with your emotional recovery. This situation is different for everyone, so trust your gut and do what is best for you.
You might want to spend a little time alone for soul-searching without distractions and unwarranted opinions. Deciding how to proceed after infidelity requires searching within for the answers.
If you think you’ll always be suspicious or unable to move on, it might not be best to continue. However, if you’re able to forgive and let it go, staying together could work for you. The decision is ultimately up to you, so look within for the answers as you decide.
8. Acknowledge and Accept How You’re Feeling
This traumatic experience comes with many emotions, and it can’t be hard to accept them all. You might feel upset, betrayed, let down, and angry. You likely even question your self-worth.
Your negative emotions must be acknowledged and accepted if you want to experience emotional healing. The feelings are normal, so don’t deny them or push them away. Acknowledging your feelings will help you let go of anger and other emotions so you can feel better again.