Written by: Bernadette Cosby, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
You can stay married after an affair, even if everyone else says leave.
Infidelity can be one of the most devastating and complex challenges a marriage can face. Couples are left feeling insecure, hurt, betrayed, and embarrassed. The initial reaction is often to end the marriage, which many experts recommend, but it doesn’t have to be the only option. If both partners are willing to stay and put in the work, it is possible to stay together when everyone else says it’s time to go.
Wanting to stay together post-infidelity does not mean you’re weak. It means you’re a lover and a fighter. A lover of the one you committed your life to and a fighter for your marriage, for better or worse. Infidelity is definitely “the worst”. By now, you’ve probably told your best friend, family, friends, or coworkers about the affair. They more than likely apologized for your pain and advised you to run. But what if you don’t want to?
Here Are 7 Secrets To Staying Married Post-Infidelity
1. Acknowledge and take responsibility for the affair
The first step in moving forward is acknowledging and taking responsibility for the affair. The partner who cheated must be honest about what happened. No matter how many questions you ask, they must be willing to share the shameful details and take responsibility for their actions. They also need to express genuine remorse. The betrayed partner needs to listen and accept the apology.
2. Practice forgiveness
Forgiveness is CRUCIAL to staying together after an affair. It's essential for both partners to forgive each other and themselves. Forgiveness doesn't mean forgetting what happened or excusing the behavior, but it does mean letting go of the anger and resentment and moving toward healing.
3. Rebuild trust
Rebuilding trust after an affair can be a long and challenging process. It requires both partners to be committed to the relationship and willing to put in the work. The partner who cheated needs to be transparent and open about their whereabouts and actions. The betrayed partner must be willing to communicate their feelings and fears and give their partner a chance to regain their trust.
4. Focus on the present and future
While it's important to acknowledge the past, it's equally important to focus on the present and future. Dwelling on the past can prevent both partners from moving forward and rebuilding their relationship. Instead, focus on what you can do to make your relationship more robust and secure.
5. Give it time
Time heals. Both partners must accept the marriage will only be restored after some time. During the restoration phase, couples should utilize this time to get to know one another again and rekindle the love lost.
6. Set realistic expectations
It is unfair to expect your partner to get it right consistently. By setting realistic expectations, you and your partner enable human fallacy, allowing grace when mistakes happen. Using emotional intelligence will help you both understand intentions and guide an appropriate response to disappointments.
7. Seek professional help
Marriage counseling can be a great tool to help rebuild trust and work through the pain caused by the affair. A trained therapist, marriage coach, or consultant can help the couple explore the underlying issues that led to the affair and develop strategies to prevent it from happening again in the future.
It can be hard to find other couples with similar experiences. Click HERE to listen to my story on how we overcame infidelity in our marriage.
Staying together after an affair is possible, but both partners must be committed to the relationship and willing to put in the work. With honesty, communication, and a willingness to forgive, couples can rebuild their trust and create a stronger, more resilient marriage. My marriage consulting program, Even After, is a marriage restoration program dedicated to helping high-performing couples stay married, Even After infidelity.
Apply HERE for an opportunity to work with me.
Bernadette Cosby, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Bernadette Cosby is a multifaceted professional passionate about helping people succeed in their relationships. She is a marriage consultant, host of the Forever Thirty-One podcast, a public speaker, and a talented fashion designer. Her unwavering commitment to uplifting and empowering individuals during their most challenging moments is truly remarkable.
Bernadette's journey is a testament to her resilience and determination. She faced the painful challenge of infidelity in her marriage, and rather than letting it break her, she emerged stronger and more committed than ever. Her personal experience serves as an inspiring example of overcoming adversity in the realm of marriage and relationships.
Her marriage consulting services provide practical advice and support, while her podcast offers a platform for open and honest discussions about the complexities of life, love, and commitment.
Bernadette's story is a living testament to the enduring power of love and determination. After weathering the storm of infidelity, she and her spouse have celebrated 19 years together, characterized by happiness and unwavering strength. Her journey is a beacon of hope and an inspiration for anyone striving to achieve their relationship goals.