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To Stay or Go After an Infidelity?

This blog post was written by Recovery Help Now’s, Vanessa Blaxland, MFTi.

After the shocking discovering that your partner has cheated you are faced with the decision to stay in the relationship and try to work through it or say “peace out”.  Your initial reaction may be filled with rage, frustration, and fear.  All completely normal, I mean who wouldn’t be P.O.’d.  However these emotions can spur impulsive decisions to flee the relationship before giving time to think and consider the impact it will have on you or possibly your children (if you have any).

So after you have gotten over the initial shock, how do you come to a rational decision to stay or leave a relationship after and infidelity has been uncovered?  Here are a few things to consider:

1. How is your partner responding to the discovery/accusation?  Are they taking responsibility and recognizing their wrong doings or are they making excuses and blaming everyone except themselves for what happened?  If your partner recognizes their role in the infidelity and is willing to work to fix what wasn’t working in your relationship staying may be the right option for you. However, if you partner is in complete denial of his/her responsibility in the infidelity they probably are not ready to change or stop their behavior.

2. What is both your commitment to working on the relationship?  If you are both invested into discovering the core reasons why the infidelity occurred and how you can repair the relationship, your relationship may become even stronger than it was before if you decide to stay and seek help from a professional.  On the other hand, if only one partner is committed and the other completely detached from the relationship and not willing to invest time and energy to repairing the partnership it will be very difficult to make it work.

3. What is keeping you together?  Maybe it is children, finances, or the fact that your two lives are so interwoven it would be difficult to separate.  But ask yourself is that enough for you and could you make that work?

Making a decision to stay or go is an extremely difficult and taxing decision.  You should make your decision based on your individual situation, feelings, and needs.  It can be tough to sort through all your emotions and thoughts that get stirred up when an infidelity has occurred.  So remember to take your time making a decision that is best for you and know that you don’t have to figure it all out on your own.

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