When your spouse cheats, it’s devastating. Some people know they’ll never forgive their spouses for having an affair; they often end up sitting in a Richmond Hill divorce lawyer’s office preparing to end their marriages.
Could You Forgive a Cheating Spouse?
Hopefully you’ll never need to answer that question. However, it doesn’t hurt to consider what you might do in the unfortunate event that your spouse strays (many people even consider online affairs cheating).
Psychologically speaking, there are three major elements to forgiveness: expression, understanding and rebuilding. Once you’ve done those things, though, you’re still not done. The most important part of forgiveness is actually letting go. Generally, people who have trouble with any of these are the ones who end up consulting a Richmond Hill divorce lawyer.
Each part of forgiveness is important, but the order doesn’t matter. One person may understand immediately but have difficulty expressing his or her emotions; another might express all their feelings right away but take time to understand why his or her spouse cheated. There’s no specific timeline in which all these things need to be accomplished, either – it’s a very individual process.
Keeping Yourself out of a Richmond Hill Divorce Lawyer’s Office
If you’re considering forgiving your cheating spouse, here’s what the process entails:
- Expression of your emotions. When we talk about expression, we mean letting you, the victim, share your feelings of anger, hurt and rejection with the cheater.
- Understanding the cheater’s motives. While you don’t have to agree with why the cheater cheated, understanding his or her mindset can help you forgive them.
- Rebuilding confidence. A new sense of trust needs to be re-built between you and the cheater. You’ll need to be confident that he or she won’t cheat again, or you won’t be able to move on.
You’ll also have to make the conscious decision to let go. That means not holding a grudge, not bringing it up when you’re angry and not secretly stewing over it when it comes to mind in the future.
Forgiveness Doesn’t Always Equal Reconciliation
You can forgive your spouse for cheating on you without reconciling. Even if you have truly forgiven your spouse, his or her actions may have destroyed your romantic feelings—and in that case, you’ll need to talk to a Richmond Hill divorce lawyer about going your separate ways.
If you do decide to consult with a Richmond Hill divorce lawyer, he or she may advise you to try going to counseling with your spouse before you file any paperwork. For some, reconciliation is possible; the Richmond Hill divorce lawyer you consult with probably knows that it’s often better to give things one last try before taking any drastic steps.