Hi Achokis, my husband had an affair last year. When I found out about it, he seemed remorseful and promised me that it will not happen again. I was hurt and moved out of our matrimonial home. He has been trying to reach out to me asking me to come back home. Is there any hope for a marriage after an affair?
Many people think that there cannot be life after an affair. But from our experience working with married couples, there can be hope. In fact, going through the journey of affair recovery guided by an expert in this area and with a commitment from both parties can lead a couple to delving into areas in their marriage they may have never done.
The natural thing for one to do after discovering that their spouse has cheated on them is to go through a state of self-denial before coming into a place of anger towards their spouse or themselves for having not seen it coming. At this point if you are not careful, you may take revenge and hit back, but this will not help. It is thus important not to make any major decision at this stage.
You need to accept that it has happened and in doing so, don’t blame yourself and try to put yourself in their shoe.
Ask the hard questions
This is not to say that you simply forgive your husband and move on. No. For proper forgiveness to happen, there must be a full disclosure of what actually happened. Did he come out clean by himself or was he busted?
Was it a one night stand or was it something that had dragged for a while? Is it the first time or has this been a habit? You see, if it has been a habit, then that may make it difficult for you. Who is this other woman? What has he done or is he doing to break off from her?
These questions are important to help you make the decision on whether or not to reconcile with him. He must be ready and open to answer any questions that might be bothering you about the affair. He must be ready to cut off all and any manner of communication and contact with their affair partner to your satisfaction.
Don’t be pressured
Don’t allow him or his relatives or even your parents to put you under pressure to have him back. His motives for coming back must be proven. Does he simply want to come back because of the children, because he is worried about his image out there or is he genuinely sorry for what he did?
This can only be proven over time, so delay his homecoming and suggest that you go through a process of rebuilding trust and restoring your relationship under the guidance of a professional counsellor.