To err is human…as the saying goes. But that doesn’t stop you from feeling terrible about making a mistake, especially if it is as serious as cheating on your partner. however sometimes feeling guilty can drain you of all the energy and focus which would be far better spent on reforming the situation and in this case, saving your marriage. So here are a few things you can doif you have cheated on your partner and are feeling guilty.
Know the difference
The first thing to understand is the difference between feeling guilty and taking responsibility for your actions. While both are ways your conscience responds to the folly you have committed, feeling guilty is a negative, fruitless reaction whereas accepting responsibility for your infidelity is the first step towards working to set things right. a little bit of guilt might be alright, necessary even, for someone to realize that he/she shouldn’t have done what they did. But if you let guilt take over your life, it will eat you up from inside and render you completely helpless. So stop feeling sorry for yourself and instead take action by thinking positive thoughts and setting out to right the wrong.
TIP: Read the guide to prevent a break up or get back with your ex.
Stop trying to “pay” for your mistakes
Now that you have resolved to right the wrong you did, avoid going to the other extreme of feeling that should keep paying for your mistakes. It is common for someone who has cheated on their partner – and been found out – to feel that they need to bear the consequences of their infidelity, even going so far as to meekly submit to a breakup or a divorce. Granted that cheating on your partner was something you shouldn’t have done, but it need not end up destroying your relationship. so instead of being overwhelmed by the wrong that you did, focus your energy on efforts that will save your relationship instead.
Take constructive steps
The best way to overcome a debilitating guilt is to do something to reform the situation. honestly examine what caused you to cheat on your partner and ask yourself how can you prevent yourself from doing it again. If you were at a bar and got carried away by a few extra drinks, take measures to control your alcohol intake or decide not to go to a bar by yourself. On the other hand if you cheated on your partner because you were unhappy in your relationship or looking for a way to get back at your partner’s indiscretions, then take a moment and consider what is going on. If you are simply unhappy but want to remain with this person, identify the cause of your unhappiness in the relationship and try to resolve it. However if your partner’s infidelity pains you to the extent of your taking such unwise steps, then decide whether you want to remain in this relationship at all.
Have a talk with your partner
Whatever course you take, it will in all probability require you to have a discussion with your partner. Be prepared for angry and distraught words from him or her – after all no one enjoys being cheated upon, no matter what the provocation. Accept that what you did was wrong but don’t offer lengthy explanations for your actions or worse, justify them as a response to their unfaithfulness, whether real or suspected. Also be honest but avoid needless disclosure of all the times you met your lover, what you gave him/her and what they gave you in return. Apart from causing additional pain to your partner, such revelations are necessary since they will do nothing to better the situation. Keep in mind that this conversation with your partner may not go smoothly – there may be tears, raised voices and tempers. Ask for a time-out if you feel things getting way out of hand and agree to resume your talk after a short break. However be sure to give your partner a chance to say their thing once everyone agrees upon a civil and reasonable discussion. Finally ask your partner what you can do to make it up to him/her. remember you are the one who has crossed the line here – or at least been caught doing so – and thus your partner is within their rights to expect you to make the first move in setting things right. at the same time, don’t agree to be caught in a situation where you will be expected to keep paying off an emotional debt, which may or may not be in proportion to your mistakes.
Let go of the past
After you have taken responsibility of your infidelity and made sincere attempts to save your marriage, learn to let go of the past. There is no point in continuing to wallow in your mistakes – at best the practice is useless but at its worst it could destroy you from within. Forgive yourself and forgive your partner if you believe their lack of love led you into it. Instead get out of the morass of the past and face the future together.
Take professional help
If you believe that your infidelity has brought your relationship on the verge of breakup then instead of drowning yourself in self-pity, take the help of a counselor or a therapist. This is especially important if you want to give your relationship a last shot. The very fact that you are willing to make an effort to save your relationship is good news and seeking professional help will enable you to understand better why you faltered. But more than that it will help you to take steps to strengthen and enrich your relationship so that it is happy and fulfilling in itself. Finally talking things out with a counselor will help you embrace your humanity so that in future you are better able to cope with the consequences of your mistakes, whether minor or major.