Marriage Missions International

Rebuilding Your Marriage After YOU Had the Affair

What can you do to rebuild your marriage and get beyond the past once you have had an affair?

There’s no going around it, there really is not going to be any easy way out of getting past the matter. It’s going to be a tough one. This is especially true as you try to help your spouse get past the devastation of the affair. You will have a lot of difficult work ahead of you. You can’t just close your eyes and wish the event away.

Jackie and Ronnie Calloway (from MarriageInspiration.com) point out one of the common mistakes made by spouses who have had affairs:

“Trying to rush the wounded spouse. The person who committed the adultery must avoid saying to your spouse, ‘That is over now, let’s forget it, not talk about it any more and move on.’ Your spouse is still devastated and bleeding. This is an open wound that you won’t slap a quick band aid on and hope they will be okay.” (From article “10 Common Marriage Reconciliation Mistakes to Avoid After Infidelity“)

And from everyone we’ve talked to that has lived through this situation, and every article we’ve read, truer words couldn’t be written. Just because you don’t want to deal with the issue any longer, or you feel like you have dealt with it long and deeply enough — that it is a dead issue as far as you’re concerned, your spouse needs top consideration here. She or he is the one who was betrayed and as long as there are more unsettled issues that she/he needs to work through, they will always be present to separate you in some way in your marriage relationship.

When emotional wounds are deep, it’s unrealistic for one spouse to decide when an offending situation should be closed and no longer dealt with. Marriage is a partnership where both spouses need to work together on such issues “until” … in other words, “until” both spouses come to a mutual agreement that all is well.

To help you further on this point and many more, we have several articles you can read below that could help you if you have had an affair and you truly are serious about trying to repair your relationship with your spouse. We hope you will prayerfully read through them, asking the Lord to help you to learn what it is that is important for you to apply in your heart, mind and actions.

The following article was written by James Vaughan, who knows first hand how difficult this journey can be because he has been there and has done that after he had an affair. He gives the following practical advice that might help you. Please click onto the web site link below to read:

Weathering the Tough Times in Rebuilding the Marriage

To help you further, the following article was written by his wife Peggy, which might help you to better know how to help your spouse heal from the damage the affair has caused. Please click onto the web site link to read:

Figuring Out and Expressing What You Think and Feel

The following question was posed to author Anne Bercht on the subject of rebuilding trust:

Question: “I have all but destroyed my husband’s trust in me as I have lied to him over the last year. I desperately want to regain his trust. Is there anything I can say or propose to him besides saying, “I’m sorry — I won’t do it again.” to make him open to at least giving me a chance to try to rebuild the trust?”

For the answer please click onto the following web site link to read:

Rebuilding Trust With Your Husband After You’ve Had An Affair

And to read other perspectives on this topic from the Dear Peggy.com web site, please click onto the following web site links to read:

Steps to Restoring Trust

How Can You Rebuild Trust After An Affair?

The “Need to Know”

Here’s a portion of another question that you might be dealing with after you have had an affair:

Question: “I have admitted to an affair. Part of my plan to gain trust is to contact the girl I had an affair with (who is absolutely no longer in my life). My wife wants me to convince this woman to send her any emails she may have kept that we sent to each other. Naturally I deleted all of my e-mails. …I am afraid if this woman does have something saved it will do the opposite of helping my wife because we really spiral out of control and go to a dark place when we discuss this. … What should I/we do?”

Click onto the following web site link to read the answer to:

What if My Wife Wants to Read Affair Emails?

It’s not just what you’ve lived through that’s important, but what you’ve “learned through” as well. Author, Becky Gain discovered that all too well. She wrote that she discovered:

“Although I ended my illicit relationship, I could not stop the memories.”

To find out what Becky “learned through” please click onto the Kyria.com web site to read:

I HAD AN AFFAIR

You may be struggling forgiving yourself and finding a way to get beyond the hurt you have caused. But:

“It’s important to accept the fact that our actions can not be erased or undone, but that we can dig deep inside and discover some way to become a better person by virtue of this experience. This focus and process can be of great help in counteracting the feelings of guilt or regret.

So the first step is letting go of “in only…” and looking toward “what can I do to demonstrate that I’ve learned an important lesson” from this experience. And, further, how can I take this learning and use it to become a better person. No matter how difficult something is to deal with, there’s always the potential for learning from it. And using these learnings to forge a more responsible and more fulfilling life can be of great help in counteracting the feelings of guilt or regret.”

To read more advice from Peggy, please click onto the web site link to read:

Where Can I Find Help for the Person Who Had the Affair?

This last article poses a question and then answers it as well. Author, Nancy C. Anderson was the person who had the affair and has since spent her life helping others who are struggling in marriages rocked by infidelity. After reading the article (and also reading her book, “Avoiding the Greener Grass Syndrome“) you may consider contacting her if you’re still struggling, to see if she might give you additional suggestions.

But first, please click onto the following link to read:

CAN A CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE SURVIVE AN AFFAIR?

We pray that God has used the above articles to minister to your heart and marriage in His amazing way.

The above article was composed by Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International.

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36 Responses to “Rebuilding Your Marriage After YOU Had the Affair”
  1. Sherry says:

    (USA)  I had a sexual affair with a longtime childhood friend. It is eating me up inside. He started by telling me he would never hurt me and that I could trust him. Then we met and he kissed me. I became addicted to seeing him. Sexy texts became the norm until finally I met him at his house. We had sex. It was wonderful during the act but after, I immediately felt a change between us. This wasnt just going to be fun anymore… In fact, I knew he was going to walk away.

    I would love to say that was years ago and now I am over it but it just happened. I am hurting inside. I love my husband. I don’t want him to know about the affair because it was a one time thing but at the same time, I need to forgive myself. I need God’s help. And what if I am pregnant?

    If you are reading this, please pray for me. It is a road I didn’t mean to walk and now all I want is the renewed innocence of before. I love my husband. I honestly do. I am praying that with God’s help we can push past this.

    • Tania says:

      (U.S.) Please pray that God will lead all timing for you. I believe that truth is necessary for healing, but please dont rush too much. Pray for Gods timing. In the mean time, try your hardest to get closer to God. Read the word, and pray, but dont just read, and dont just pray… Dig deep for God. For answers, for peace. And I will pray the same for you. I’ve been on both ends of this horrible trap in the same marriage, and am myself trying to keep going. God bless you and keep you and yours safe and in his will. All my love and understanding go out to you.

  2. Tony says:

    (USA)  Start with the first step. The article about 10 mistakes…. indicates that you have to tell the truth. “Lying about some aspect of the betrayal. Do not lie about anything. To rebuild the trust in the relationship, you Must tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God. Your marriage reconciliation attempt must be honest from the start.”

    That is not consistent with your desire not to tell your husband.

    This is something he deserves to know. If he doesn’t know it, your concealing this from him is a lie of omission.

    He has to be told the truth, the entire truth and be given the chance to make an informed decision about recovering the marriage the two of you share.

    I pray that you will be 100% open and honest and tell your husband. That is far better than living a lie and/or him finding out some other way. Bad news does not get better with age. The best time to tell him is yesterday. If you can’t do that, tell him today.

  3. Guilty says:

    (USA) I have been married for going on 7 years and I made the mistake of making friends with another man that took my conversation as something else, I believe. When my husband found out and talked to him he played coy and wouldn’t answer certain questions until a month later when he found out my husband knew who he was. Then he told the TRUTH, which was nothing ever happened or was going to happen, and that I never gave anyone the time of day. But by then it was too late, because the notion was already implied.

    Needless to say my husband is hurt, I’m feeling insanely guilty, and he doesn’t believe anything now. How do I make it better? Please pray for us. We both want it to work but it’s a hard and painful road. All I do is pray everyday and try to work on us.

  4. Nomzi says:

    (SOUTH AFRICA) Please help me, I’m hurting inside after my husband betrayed me having affair with a younger person than me and I dont know how to move on and forgive him. Every time I look at him I see her and the things they where doing together.

  5. Will says:

    (USA) I have been married for almost 18 years and recently told my wife about a 4 year affair. It was devastating. I had to come clean and that was not the worst. I had had 2 other smaller affairs, one which only lasted a couple of months the other not even that long. In all they spanned 11 years of the 18 but in actual time 4 and a half years of our 18. I could not handle the guilt anymore and felt as if I had to “reset” my life. Of course I knew what this might mean, divorce, but I felt I had to do it in order to stop the affair and get help. My wife and kids were/are devastated.

    I am so sorry and I love my wife and kids with all my heart, I truly do. She has actually been great and I have answered any and all questions she has had. I have ended the affair and realize what a mistake it was. I have been praying to God for forgiveness and guidance and to help my wife and kids heal. I am going to counseling as well as meeting with the priest that married us. It is all helping me understandto why I did what I did but my wife is not wavering from getting a divorce. I know she is hurting but it just doesn’t seem like it will matter what I do. I am so sorry and don’t know what do.

    • Tania says:

      (U.S.) Will be praying for your wife every day! I am now facing the same as she is, only I have also Bem on your end of the spectrum. Every time I feel the horror and pain, I will make it a point to remember her, and pray for all of us, including and know all the children. Stay strong, keep praying, be open, and know that it is definitely harder for her than you or me.

    • Me says:

      (SOUTH AFRICA) To read these gives some kind of ok. I just had an affair. My husband found an email about a month ago. It did not last long, about 10 days, but I knew the guy for a few months, actually was a mutual friend of ours. My husband is 14 years older than me, this guy is 2 years younger than me. My husband has kids from his previous marriage and I was ok with the idea of never having my own, as I got to the the age of 32 it starts being an issue for me, not having my own. I desperately want my own child, as result he always said no.

      Scared that I’m giving something up that nothing will ever replace, and thinking of living with this emptiness, this younger guy seemed very attractive, my age, no baggage, and I can have my own family etc. The truth is that my husband is extremely abusive (verbally); he destroyed us both. I’m back at home, but struggle. I pray to God and ask for guidence and hope. The stepkids are cruel to me, just like their dad. He discusses our marriage all the time with them.

      I ask God for his will and not mine. The only answers I get is God keeps saying I belong to him. What is His plan for me? I am willing to leave my marriage, scared and don’t have confidence, but willing. If that is what God’s will is. I sometimes feel so stupid. My whole world is turned upside down with this. I don’t know what to do? So glad I found this page. If anyone can chat, I would appreciate it.

    • Valerie from United States says:

      My husband also did what you did. He was not a Christian at the time. He is now. Same story different people. Find out why you keep having affairs. It is a symptom. As the wife on the other side -no trust. How do you rebuild it –complete transparency, and accountability. Let her help you. We have been married almost 25 years, but God can be in charge, and heal your marriage. It can be done… Praying for you and your family.

  6. Diane says:

    (UNITED STATES) My husband has been having an affair for 2 years and says he’s lovesick and doesn’t want to get divorced. I feel the marriage is over! What do I do, this is killing my children–making me sick and he shows no signs of stopping! Please help me.

  7. Jessica says:

    (UNITED STATES) I have been married for 10 years. The last few I felt neglected, hurt and angry by my spouse. I used this as a reason to have an affair. I had read articles suggesting to not tell my spouse, to cut off all ties to the other person, and to not let myself fall weak again, to repair my marriage.

    I told him anyway, I almost didn’t because no good would come of hurting him. I hate myself for all the pain I’ve caused. I regret all of it, the affair, and telling my husband. I spent several hours realizing that I don’t want to lose him. After his initial anger had passed he said he didn’t hate me, just what I did, that he loved me and we could rebuild our life. He initiated intimacy; we held each other all night.

    It’s a new day and he feels differently. I’m afraid of him, for the first time. And I’m afraid that I’ll hurt myself. I can handle the verbal abuse; he won’t get physical. I have contemplated suicide to make it all go away, the pain EVERYTHING. I see my children’s faces and hear their voices in my mind and I can’t do it. I know I deserve punishment for what I did.

    • Brittany says:

      (U.S.) Jessica, reading your story is as if I wrote it. My affair came out a couple months ago. I kept it from my husband for over two years. I had rationalized not telling him because in telling him it would only devastate him. And I know I will never put myself in a position to ever betray him again. Of course, keeping it from him was betrayal itself. I too had thoughts of suicide. Thought if I’m dead it would hurt him less than knowing this betrayal. But, suicide is even more selfish and God will not save me from that. I deserved pain anyway.

      We didn’t eat for a couple days when it came out. We had moments of silence, crying, holding another, & intimacy. He re-proposed and we were so open. I felt free for the first time since my convictions had caught up to me. It’s been two months. Everyday is a new struggle. I’ve done more praying than ever. God has good things for those who love Him. It will be hard, seeing your children’s faces, knowing you not only betrayed your husband, your vows, but them as well.

      It is hard to live with yourself I know. Repent. Ask forgiveness from your husband. Ask forgiveness from God. Life will go on. I pray for both you and your husband that you ask God for right footing. Good luck with your next step and God bless.

      • Cindy Wright says:

        Brittany, I’m so glad that despite the pain, you decided to expose that which was dark and bring it into the light so it can be dealt with properly. It’s just like the enemy of our faith to tempt you to choose suicide, thinking that would “hurt less” than knowing this betrayal. I know of several people whose spouse died and afterward, the other spouse just then learns of the affair (somehow the info gets into their hands). This is a double-whammy for all who are left behind. The spouse who is “surviving” doesn’t know what to do with her/his grief. There is such a mixture of loss and yet betrayal on so many levels, riddled with questions –most of which, will never be answered. It shows all the more the scripture that says, “be sure your sin will find you out.” The problems didn’t die with that spouse, they grew all the more complicated and then were heaved into the laps of those left behind.

        And then the surviving children grow up with all kinds of questions of inadequacy and confusion, when suicide is involved. “Why didn’t my mom (dad) love me enough to live for me?” “Is there something I could have done to stop this… maybe if I would have been ‘good’ enough…” and the doubts go on and on. If they find out about the betrayal they don’t know what to do with it. There’s no resolution –no opportunity to work it through with the parent that betrayed their other parent. Again, I’m so glad that you didn’t fall victim to the lying thoughts that suicide would be better for all. That is a lie straight from the pit of Hell. I pray that you and your husband are able to work through this horrible time together –that you are able to find ways to build a new life together with repentance and forgiveness being one of the cornerstones of your relationship. And may your children be all the more blessed because of it!

    • Kelly says:

      (USA) Jessica, How are you doing? I had an affair and my husband & children found out 39 days ago. My husband filed for divorce less than 24 hours after finding out, got a restraining order against me for my children and has accused me of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. So I not only am getting a divorce, I am also facing criminal charges. I have had no contact with my 16 year old daughter for 39 days. I am allowed to see my 14 year old daughter 4 supervised hours a week. I love my husband so very much but he will not speak to me or see me at all, so I don’t have the chance to say anything. I want to die! Death is constantly in the back of my mind, I feel like it’s only a matter of time & opportunity.

      • Cindy Wright says:

        Kelly, I get it as far as your being in despair. But please don’t entertain doing something hasty, such as dying when the “time and opportunity” shows itself. I’m hoping these are fleeting, radical thoughts for right now. But please know that the more you focus on them as a possible choice, the more you will inch towards it. And nothing would destroy your daughter’s lives more than being left with the question, “why didn’t my mom love me enough to NOT do this… why didn’t she work through this instead of permanently ending any possibility for us to eventually have time together?” There are a million questions that will plague them forever. I’ve known of “children” who have had a parent end their life and they are permanently scarred from it. They are dealing with SO MUCH right now, please don’t heap more upon them. It’s a lie straight from hell that this would “be better for everyone” –yourself included, if you weren’t around. Don’t buy this lie!

        As far as your actions with the affair, yes, you blew it! You gave into temptation, disregarding how much hurt can come out of it eventually –for so many people, including yourself. But if you give into this additional temptation, you won’t be able to participate with God in bringing at least some type of redemption out of it. And it CAN come –I’ve seen it over and over again. But it will take you participating in bringing it about. Throw those death thoughts out as garbage. Don’t even allow yourself to go there in your thoughts. Grit it out and do the hard work of rebuilding your life and the “new normal” that is ahead of you.

        I’m not going to kid you to say that things will ever be the same. They won’t be. The innocence of not giving into this type of temptation is gone and stained. But that doesn’t mean that SOME good can’t eventually come out of it. Don’t underestimate what God can do when you join Him in working through this with you and your family. And what is happening now doesn’t mean that your children will forever turn their backs on you. Right now there are a lot of raw emotions and imaginations they need to sort through. And they are going through it at a time in life (teen years) where most EVERYTHING is topsy-turvy with their hormones and such. But eventually, I’m sure, things will settle down in some way. Your husband will talk to you. Obviously that won’t be right now.

        Please, give him time and space and grace. He’s got to be immersed in an ocean of questions and anger and hurt and such. He has a right to be angry –please give him that. I don’t agree with what he has done about your children, but perhaps in time, as you show yourself to be trustworthy in how you live your life, your children will be able to eventually come around, and perhaps even your husband. I don’t know, but right now he and your girls have a lot to process through. I wish they would do it with you, but you have to give them that choice. You made choices, which forever changed their lives, now they need to sort through their choices.

        As for what you do right now, you are still these girl’s mom and if you do anything hasty (including being with this man again) you will be just adding salt to their wounds. They will eventually need affirmation that you love them and are there for them to help them work through their woundedness. All of this is confusing. But as time and opportunity opens up more possibilities and you do the hard work of emotionally processing through all of this yourself, I have no doubt that you can all get to a better place than you are right now. I’ve known of many, many families, where this has happened and the kids and the parent who had the affair, have been able to come to a MUCH better place. This includes my own family because my Dad had an affair and our world turned upside down. But my Dad and I are ok now. It took a while, but forgiveness came and we re-established a good relationship once again.

        There are a few things I HIGHLY encourage you to do. The first is to work through your own issues while you are in this waiting room of your life. Yes, I know your husband won’t talk to you right now. But you can’t predict the future and IF and when he opens up even a little peep hole to talk to you, it would be good for you to be better prepared. You need to work through this and be ready in case you have the opportunity to work through any of this with him. Even if you don’t, you will be better prepared to work through this with your children.

        Also, in the same topic this article is housed, you will find a section where there are “Links and Resource Descriptions.” I encourage you to go into it and contact someone who has been where you are –she also committed adultery and now reaches out to others who are in this spot. Her name is Nancy Anderson. You will find a link there so you can contact her. She’s a GREAT gal. Even though some of your circumstances are different (she and her husband have reconciled and didn’t have children at the time), she has worked with so many that I’m sure she could give you some great advice. She knows so much of what you are going through. And what she doesn’t know, I have no doubt that she can point you to the help you need. I hope you will do this. I pray for you and your husband and your precious daughters. I pray that eventually you will see a glimmer of hope that you and your family will experience brighter days instead of the dark ones you are now experiencing. As long as we have breath, there is hope.

  8. Will says:

    (US) To those that have mentioned huting themselves, I hope you read this. Please think of your kids. And keep praying. Please find a counselor, friend and keep talking. Keep busy and remember that your kids do need you. Please don’t give up.

  9. Pamela says:

    (SOUTH AFRCA) My husband had an affair with our 16 year old ex foster child. I can’t get past the hurt and pain I’ve felt and still feel. There are times that I pretend I’m fine but I’m not. It happen recently and all he says is I’m sorry, it’s done, it happened, he can’t help it, he fell in love but it’s finish now and lets get past it. But I don’t think he’s sorry because he looks at web sites for women, or says young girls want me; I’m not that old. Will I ever be able to trust him again and will we survive this affair? We have 3 beautiful children together. The oldest one is 12 now. I’ve been married for 13 years.

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Pamela, I hate to say this, but your husband is playing with fire and is NOT honoring you or your marriage. Trust will never be able to be rebuilt (nor should it) until and unless he stops playing around –dabbling in temptation. He will also need to “get it” as far as how hurtful this is to you, and to your marriage and to your children, and sincerely expresses it and does what it takes to help you to heal. He is hurting the mother of his children –you. He is hurting the woman (you) that he vowed to “love, honor, and cherish” and to be faithful to, until parted by death. He also violated this foster child. I don’t care what age she is, and how “in love” he says he was or she was, he violated the whole “foster child” concept –not to mention what he did to you and how he violated your heart and trust.

      I can’t tell you what to do with this. All I can tell you is that right now you need to be cautious as far as the trust you give him. Also, with AIDS and other diseases going around, whoever “wants” him and has sex with him can pass something onto him and then onto you. So beware! Do what you think you should to protect yourself physically and emotionally. If he were my husband, I wouldn’t act as if “I’m fine” when “I’m not.” He needs to know that he is damaging you and your marriage and your family. And what kind of example is he setting for your children? They may not know all of the details now (and they shouldn’t), but kids are perceptive in figuring things out eventually –especially when your husband is so blatantly unrepentant about it all.

      You CAN survive this… but it will take your husband’s cooperation and help if your marriage has any chance of surviving it… if not, there is little possibility. I’m sorry to say that. My heart and prayers go out to you, Pamela. I pray for wisdom and help and strength for you –that somehow, you will find a way to survive this one way or another as you lean upon the Lord for guidance and hope.

    • Mary says:

      (AUSTRALIA) Pamela, You have been in my prayers and on my mind. I forgot to say that I understand your pain. I have been in your shoes. My son was only 8 months old when his father had an affair. Unfortunately we couldn’t work through it, I did forgive him but it did take time and emotional honesty from me but in the end our marriage couldn’t move forward because he wasn’t really taking responsibility or for what happened. He wanted to brush it under the carpet and play happy families at home, church and in front of people.

      The OW was completely broken and hurt. She thought he would leave me for her. She was my best friend we had shared so much together. I was completely betrayed. She lost her friendship with me and her “lover” I wish I had been more gracious to her at the time but I was too hurt and in pain to be kind or gracious. Our marriage didn’t last very long after the affair about 5 months.

      BUT I did go on to marry a faithful and Godly man and have more children. I feel blessed that God gave me such a husband and happy marriage. Life isn’t over because of an unfaithful husband your life will become wonderful again. There is hope and some marriages come out stronger after working through difficulties with God, love, honesty, counselling and hard work. Blessings to you -Mary

  10. Mary says:

    (AUSTRALIA) Hi Pamela,
    I am so sorry that you & your children are going through this. It breaks my heart to hear of Godly marriages struggling. God can redeem all things including a troubled marriage. But only if your husband is truly sold out for Jesus and understands how he hurt you and the child he slept with.

    A 16 year old in my opinion and legally in AUSTRALIA and probably NZ is not considered an adult. Although it may have been legal for him to have sex with a 16 year old they are still very vulnerable and not equipped to handle an older mature adult males attention. There are many countries where it is illegal to have sex until age 18 and they are considered an adult. Your foster daughter must be devastated by this abuse by her foster father. Your husband has not only violated your marriage and dishonoured you but also hurt the father foster daughter relationship. I personally could not pretend I was fine in front of anyone including my kids and foster children. I could not live with such abuse and stress. I would have him leave the marital home until he was truly sorry and in Christian Counselling. I could not share a bed or home with him until the truth was out. I wish you the best in your future decisions I hope and pray God can heal all the hurt that has been caused and full restoration can occur.

  11. Maria says:

    (USA) I had an affair. It lasted 6 months. I do not love the guy. I actually really do love my husband. He is a great husband and father. I don’t know why I did it. Maybe it was a mid life crisis, ego boost. I don’t know but we are both hurting now so much. We have 2 young kids who mean eveything to us. I don’t know what the next step is going to be. I want to do anything and everything to repair this but I don’t think he wants to. It’s the most horrible thing I have eve gone through (and I have lost 2 parents and have 3 miscarriages), which are pretty devastating. Both our hearts are in a million pieces. How do I repair 15 wonderful years and get back on track?

  12. Abbigail says:

    (USA) I’m 27 got married and two months after found out my husband had an affair for 1 month and got the lady pregnant… I couldn’t take it. I was devastated. He has lied to me so many times don’t know what to do about trusting him again. I feel like the child is a constant reminder of what he did to me so I can’t come to accept the child. I love my husband so much and I know he is sorry for what he has done… Our marriage is in trouble because I don’t know how to accept this child in my life. I just need some advice and most of all prayer because I just don’t want to quit I want to fight…

  13. JA from United States says:

    I cheated on my wife but told her about it, then I did it again. It’s an internal stupid thing that I am seeking help for. But on the same token she (wife) brought it out into her view. I want the marriage restored back to its original state. I also realized that I hadn’t gotten over my ex and hadn’t dealt with that. I’m asking for prayer for wisdom, guidance and healing power. I love my wife so much I know I can be open and honest with her and I love that. I want her to feel that too! Please help each of us to fight for this marriage.

    • Tony from United States says:

      JA, I think you have an unreasonable expectation to have the marriage restored to its original state. You’ve done some serious damage. Second, if the marriage wasn’t good enough to prevent you from breaking your vows, I suggest you are setting your sights too low if the only think you are shooting for is to have a marriage that was as good as it was before you decided to have an affair.

      Let me suggest two things. Your wife will heal in her own time, on her pace, and cannot nor should not be hurried along by you. She will also always carry the emotional scars from what you did to her.

      Second, what you should be striving for is to make for your wife a marriage that was even better for her than it was before you decided to have an affair. Obviously being married to a husband willing to have an affair is not the standard to which you should return. She deserves a better marriage than the one she had when you decided to cheat.

      So man up and set your standards higher. The standards you were using when you had your affairs did not safeguard your wife, so suggesting you want that same marriage only puts her at risk of having her heart broken again. What you need to have is a marriage that is better than it ever was.

      No arguments, not complaints about how hard that is and so forth. If you really want a good marriage, then make sure it’s an even better marriage for her than it has been to this point. Because a marriage where you’re married to a repeat cheater is not a good marriage.

  14. Jessica from United States says:

    I made the unfortunate mistake of cheating on my husband once. I talked to the guy for about 2 weeks and one night met him, right after I cut contact with the guy. I had a lot of childhood and past relationship problems that played a part. We have been married almost 8 yrs. We have a 7 and 2 yr old. I told my husband the next day. I did with hold information the first 4 times he asked me about it. I finally told him everything.

    He did leave at first with the intention of cheating on me but couldn’t do it. He would never do that. He was a virgin when we met. He came back mainly only for my kids but we are in the process of working things out. It was a horrible mistake that will never happen again. I feel so bad I love my husband more than anything in this world and want to be with him forever. He is such a good husband that after this happened we started seeing a counselor and realized all this stuff from my past was the main cause. He put his feelings and emotions on hold until I could get over my past.

    I have been saved since and have turned to God. He has forgiven me and says he’s not going anywhere. The only good thing that has come from this is our marriage is better than it has been since we had our first child 7 yrs ago. It kills me every day that I did this and will never do it again. He has since started to trust me little by little. I think he does realize I truly am sorry and wouldn’t ever do this again. I just would like to know if there’s anything to help him through this.

    • Cindy Wright from United States says:

      Jessica, I’m so glad that you have woken up and that your husband is a forgiving man. I’m also so glad to now be your Christian sister since you turned to God. May He keep revealing Himself more and more to you everyday.

      As for what you did in the past, it sounds like you are on the right path to helping your husband “through this.” You have confessed, you have told the truth, revealing all, and you are dealing with your past, which complicates matters of the heart all the more if it isn’t dealt with properly. The only additional things I could recommend for you to do is to guard your heart against future temptations. Go into the “Facebook and Twitter” topic to read about cyber cheating and protecting your marriage. And go into the “Emotional Infidelity” topic and read what you can and apply all you know to do, letting your husband know that you are doing these things because you are committed to him and committed to safe-guarding your marriage. That will mean a lot to him. And continually look for ways to grow your marriage relationship. Let your husband know that you love and appreciate and respect him for the good man that he is –that you know you are blessed to have him as your marriage partner. Do what you can to show that you don’t take his love and care for granted and you truly WILL be blessed. I pray the Lord helps you with all of this and blesses your efforts abundantly.

  15. Rachel from United States says:

    I’ve been married 12 years; there have always been issues of lack of intimacy in our marriage on my husband’s part. We both grew up in Christian homes where we were taught that sex before marriage was dirty and wrong. Neither of us were virgins when we met but keeping our relationship pure was important to my husband while we dated. I did have concerns about his lack of passion but I thought once we were married things would change…they did not. This issue has become a deeply rooted seed of bitterness in me toward him. I never thought that I would be a person to have an affair but when an ex boyfriend reconnected with me a few years ago, sparks flew and I found myself in a deep emotional online affair; it was only for the fact that he lived several states away that it did not become physical.

    After almost a year we ended our communication and it took me another year to be able to break free of the emotional bondage. During that time a girlfriend of mine who had gone through several affairs and an ultimate divorce warned me that while the relationship wasn’t physical that I was opening Pandora’s box and setting myself up for making a bigger mistake. I didn’t believe her but now three years later her prediction came true. Still feeling a void left by that online romance I recently became entrapped by a man who I met through a local interest group. He is married, came on strong and fast like a predator; I instinctively knew his goal was to use me, but I so desperately just wanted to feel desired and have passion that I chose to selfishly ignore all the obvious warning signs. After a month of calls and texts, and two encounters where we kissed I met him for sex. It was great at the moment but the next day he coldly and quickly ended it. Now I’m left riding a roller coaster and painful emotions to the point I question my sanity. I have no intention of telling my husband because I believe I should be the one the carry the burden of the pain. My biggest fear is that this doesn’t end here, that given more time I will repeat my mistake again with someone else.

    • Kay from United States says:

      Rachel, I’m glad you have realized a destructive pattern. I would recommend “Every Woman’s Battle” by Shannon Etheridge, specifically for those struggling with affairs. She helps you identify why You are making these choices. You are right this will continue if you don’t get help. Your intimacy issues with your husband NEVER justify your sin. You don’t mention if you have discussed this with him, if he has had a medical eval., is he depressed or having his own affair? ?Maybe you have worked through all these questions with him. Regardless, YOU can only change Yourself, not him.

      I have been a similar position, and I am so thankful that I have found that I have been believing lies about seeking affirmation from men, –”looking for love in all the wrong places”–when Jesus is where I find an everlasting love, one that will never fail me. It’s difficult to uproot the stronghold that has been in my heart for many years, but not impossible! God’s grace is sufficient! Praying you will seek Truth, and Break Free.

  16. Emilee from United States says:

    Hi all! I recently took a “friendship” to another level and made the mistake of betraying my husband of 18 years. I told him I had developed feelings for the other man involved and that I had met him once and didn’t have sex. I want to tell him the truth but don’t want to hurt him. We’re going to start counseling soon. My question is: should I tell him about the sexual encounters or not being it will kill him?

    To make matters worse, I fell in love with this other man. He told me he would always be there for me and never leave. We spent a wonderful day together, and I then received a message from him that he doesn’t want to break up a family due to his selfishness. I haven’t heard from him since. As horrible as it may sound, and I’m not proud of my actions, I’m trying to repair a marriage and grieving a broken relationship. How do I get through this? I feel like an awful person. :(

    • Tony from United States says:

      Your husband deserves to know the truth about his marriage so he can make an informed decision on how to proceed. Your marriage cannot heal if you keep secrets from your husband.

      It’s not the news that hurts, it’s the affair. The betrayal only ends when he knows the truth about his marriage. As long as it’s kept secret, the betrayal is on-going.

    • Kay from United States says:

      Emilee, You have done the right thing, by seeking help. You are in for a very painful road ahead, but so many times we must. After an injury or surgery or an accident, there often is much pain involved AS the healing takes place. Walking through this with an experienced marriage counselor is a very WISE choice, and I believe once you begin that process, your question about “revealing all” will be answered.

      I believe that each marriage, and each situation is unique. There are no cookie cutter answers. God is TRUTH, and that is the perfect answer, but there are ways to honor and be gracious to our loved ones in these horrible circumstances.

      This website has many, many wonderful articles and advice from the thousands who have walked this road. Take time to educate yourself on affairs –all the info in “Surviving Infidelity” are very helpful.

      Most importantly, PRAY, PRAY for wisdom and grace to know when to speak and when to be silent. I hope and pray your marriage will survive this BATTLE, and that you and your husband will emerge stronger.

  17. Vivian from United States says:

    I don’t know what to do. My mom thinks that my dad is having an affair since recently he does not touch my mom and also started to pick on her. She also found that there is a woman who calls him everyday. Mom told me but did not confront dad. She is very hurting. Mom and I both know that dad won’t admit without hard evidence and also by doing so it will hurt their already broken relationship even harder. I am Christian but both my parents are not. I am praying for them but don’t know how to help them. What should I do?

  18. Michelle from United States says:

    I had an affair this last summer and it lasted three months. This is after my husband and I had been married for almost two years. When I finally started to get over it and the pain it caused my husband, he leaves for deployment and I start up another affair. This one is not romantic but just physical. I love my husband and I don’t understand why I keep going down this path over and over! I used to never think I would do something so awful.

    My plan now is to move from the apartments I reside in since he lives in them too. This will help remove temptation I guess. But from there where do I go? Do I tell my husband and how?! How do I avoid this cycle? And how do I get my marriage back on track especially when part of my reasons behind cheating are emotional but mostly caused by a lack of sexual fulfillment and desire sexually for my husband.

  19. Ashley from United States says:

    I had an affair on my husband. He is in the army and has a lot of anger issues. I felt neglected and unwanted so I had an emotional relationship with another man on and off again. It took everything out of me to tell him. We have only been married for almost 3 years. We both are young; I’m 22. I feel so bad for doing it but I didn’t want to feel guilty anymore and I knew I could never make it to heaven if I was a liar so I had to be honest.

    The reason behind me doing it was because my husband was never there emotionally. He didn’t want to be around me. He abused me emotionally, physically, and mentally, even while I was pregnant. I found him talking to females and writing females online but he says he never did anything. I begged him for attention and he wouldn’t give it to me. I was depressed our whole marriage. My whole pregnancy I even thought about suicide but I know I will never make it into heaven if I did that.

    I wanted someone to talk to and felt lonely. I had no family where we moved to and unwanted by my husband so I had an emotional relationship. We didn’t have a sexual encounter, just other intimacy stuff. I feel terrible. Can I ever make it to heaven after what I did? How can I seek God? How can I repair my marriage?

    • Cindy Wright from United States says:

      Hi Ashley. I’m so sorry that you find yourself in this place within your marriage. I’m reminded of something one marriage expert (Diane Sollee) said, “What we really need is a time machine so that people entering into an affair could flash forward and see themselves, their kids, and their lives at the other end of their lust.” Sadly, you are experiencing the consequences and the sting brought about on the other side of entering into an affair.

      You have a lot of issues going on that you brought up in this comment. I’ll do the best I can to address them. First off, I encourage you to read through as many of the articles posted on this web site concerning emotional affairs, infidelity and extra marital affairs as you can. Pray, read through and try to learn from what you read. This could help you to process through all that happened, and help you to own up to and work through (with redeeming results) the wrongs that you committed against God, your husband, and your marital commitment. They can also help you to learn how to “repair” your marriage. You talk about the emotional emptiness you experienced before you had the affair. I have no doubt that this was a hurtful and confusing time for you. To get on the repairing side of this affair, whatever you do, please don’t allow yourself to believe the lie that because you hurt so badly, solutions to cheat and do that which you should not, are acceptable. They aren’t. Yes, your husband left you vulnerable because of his issues and also the fact that you were geographically apart from each other. He was wrong in many of the things he did. Abuse is NEVER acceptable –whether it’s emotional, physical, or mental. I hope some day he owns up to this and gets help. He obviously needs it.

      But it is never a “choice” we should entertain or take, whether we are hurting or not, to choose to cheat on our marriage partner (whether or not he is doing what he should). It’s a matter of personal integrity. From this day forward, please value your own honor more than to allow yourself to stoop lower than you should when it comes to honesty, forthrightness, and good morals. It’s a lot easier to look in the mirror.

      Ashley, I encourage you to go into the “Links and Recommended Resources” part of the “Surviving Infidelity” topic. You will find other web sites linked in there. Visit those that you believe will help you. Among them is one for Nancy Anderson. Please visit her web site and go into the “Contact Information” of Ron and Nancy’s web site and write to Nancy what you have written here. Nancy also had an affair, except sadly, she DID go the next step and get involved physically with the other man. She knows what it’s like to be on that end of this type of behavior. I have a lot of respect for Nancy (we corresponded a bit in the past)… she has a great heart and is compassionate and wise and I believe she would be willing to help you work through many of your questions, including repairing your marriage and seeking God. Please try. I believe you will find much of the help you need. It would be good to “talk” back and forth with someone who is on the healthy end of what you are going through, having experienced it herself.

      Also, you ask if you can “make it to heaven after what I did?” Yes, most definitely yes. We’re told in God’s Word the Bible in 1 John 1:9,”If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Sins are anything we do that is wrong. If you talk to God and tell Him that you are sorry and you don’t ever want to do anything like that again –that you want to live as you should, God will forgive you. He will then blot out the penalty for what you have done. You don’t have to go through a priest or minister to do this, you have direct access to God because of the sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross for you and for me. But going to heaven involves a bit more. So, I also encourage you to go to the right side of this web site where you will see a blue box that says in white lettering, “Seeking Direction, Purpose? Find It Now.” And then click onto the arrow and explore the options they direct you to, including “Knowing Jesus” and then “The Good News” and even the “Contact Us” option. If you desire, they will contact you personally and help you to seek God in a way that will amaze you –one that will bring you much peace. They’re good people and are ready and willing to talk to you. Please take advantage of their help. They’ve all been in bad places themselves. Nancy Anderson can also talk to you about this, if you ask. I have no doubt that she will consider it a privilege. … I pray for you Ashley, that you will experience the forgiveness, peace, help and hope that you need. Please continue to seek Him, He is there for you waiting.

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