If You Are Being Cheated On:
The best predictor of future behavior is relevant past behavior. What do you predict? If your partner has cheated on you repeatedly and now swears he/she will stop, what are the chances that this is true? You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge. Isn’t there a point at which you say, “I deserve better. My children deserve better. He/She may not have any boundaries, but I do. And my boundaries say, ‘You either treat me with integrity, dignity and respect or you don’t treat me at all’?” Stand up for yourself and for your children. You’ve given your power away and you’ve got to get it back.
This is not your fault.
Stop beating yourself up about this. You have got to know that this has nothing to do with you. You are not the one who made the decision to break your commitment to your partner and cheat. You have nothing to do with your partner making the immature, inappropriate, self-destructive choice to turn away from you to someone else.
What is your payoff?
Do you want to get past this? Or is there a payoff you receive from the situation? Do you enjoy playing the victim or subjecting your partner to a life sentence? Do you fear that if you forgive a partner who truly is remorseful and has changed his/her behavior that you are “letting them get away with it?”
Assess your commitment level.
You can either handle being vulnerable with your partner again or you can’t. And if you can’t, you need to get out of this relationship and move on. And if you can, then you need to let him/her earn the trust back and start putting this relationship together again.
Consider the consequences.
If you have children, your decision will affect them as well. You do have responsibility here for what you do next. You have to make a decision about whether or not justice is best served by allowing your partner to re-earn your trust, or if it’s better not to subject your family any longer to the current situation.
Decide if you can choose to forgive.
Forgiveness is a choice. It doesn’t mean what your partner did is OK. How much you trust your partner is in part about what your partner does, and in part a function of whether you have confidence to handle it if he/she disappoints you. If you find out that he/she strays again, can you handle that?
If you can’t forgive, let go.
When you choose the behavior, you choose the consequences. If you continue to throw this in your partner’s face, you will eventually run him/her off. Ask yourself if this is going to be a life sentence for your partner. Can you heal from this and forgive? If not, don’t continue to live in anger and/or be with someone who causes you pain.
Inspired by Dr. Phil
Photo by StockLite
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