19 May How to trust your husband again after he cheated
If your marriage has been rocked by infidelity, you’re probably grappling with a multitude of emotions and wondering how to trust your husband again. It’s a tough journey, but one that can be navigated with patience and conscious effort.
Setting Boundaries Post-Infidelity
Post-infidelity, many couples work to rebuild trust by establishing boundaries. These can take the form of a list of actions your husband should, or should not, perform. This serves two purposes – to provide a sense of safety for you and to act as a physical manifestation of his efforts to regain trust. His commitment to the marriage can often be gauged by how well he adheres to this list.
The Role of Fear in Trust Building
However, there’s a crucial factor to consider: fear. Your fear of being hurt again can inhibit you from trusting him, despite the actions he takes. This fear clouds your intuition, making you skeptical of his actions or inactions. Therefore, regardless of how remorseful he may be or how many promises he keeps, your fear can prevent you from rebuilding trust in your relationship.
Example: The Open Book Policy
Let’s examine a common scenario. After infidelity, couples often adopt an ‘open book policy’, where you have the liberty to check his phone, his computer, or keep tabs on his whereabouts. This policy is agreed upon on the basis that it’s your right to know his activities, especially given the circumstances.
I experienced a similar phase after my husband’s infidelity, where I found myself obsessively snooping, trying to find reasons that validated my lack of trust. However, this approach often leads to a cycle of anxiety and dissatisfaction. Even when you don’t find any new evidence, it rarely quells your doubts for long.
The Stumbling Block of Fear
Instead, you might convince yourself that he’s just getting better at hiding his actions. This is an example of how fear can make you feel stuck. No matter how sincerely your husband tries to make amends, you could end up questioning him to the point where he might think, “Why bother, she’s never going to believe that I’ve changed.”
In many cases, it’s not the infidelity itself but the inability to rebuild trust and move on from the incident that drives marriages to collapse.
Retelling the Story: An Unhealthy Cycle
Continually retelling the story of his infidelity only serves to retraumatize you, keeping you locked in suffering instead of facilitating healing. As you recount the events, your body reacts – your heart rate increases, anger wells up, and tears may even start to flow. This is not a constructive way to live or to rebuild a marriage.
The past is unchangeable, but you have the power to shape your future. The question is: do you want to let the past dictate your future, or do you want to heal and forge a path towards trust and security, leaving fear and anxiety behind?
Steps to Rebuilding Trust in Your Marriage
Here are three vital steps you need to take to start rebuilding trust in your marriage:
Step 1: Release the Emotional Trauma
Firstly, let go of the emotional trauma harbored in your body. This will help you to reduce fear-based triggers and restore a sense of calm, peace, and clarity. A good indicator of progress is when you can discuss the infidelity calmly without feeling triggered.
Step 2: Rebuild Self-Trust
Secondly, rebuild trust in yourself. It’s natural to start second-guessing your judgment, especially when you didn’t see the signs of infidelity.
This self-doubt can lead to sleepless nights and an inability to believe your husband, even when he’s being truthful. This is because your faith in your own intuition has taken a hit. However, a strong marriage foundation can’t be established without self-confidence and self-trust. So, it’s essential to regain trust in your own intuition. A sign of healing is when you genuinely trust something your husband tells you because your intuition resonates with his sincerity.
Step 3: Reconnect with Yourself
Finally, it’s time to reconnect with the part of you that might have gotten lost in the chaos. The part that is not consumed by the need to be the perfect wife but understands her worth and yearns for a marriage built on mutual respect, trust, and intimacy. This step empowers you to reenter your marriage stronger than ever or, if you choose to leave, equip you with the skills to thrive in a new relationship. A good sign of healing is when you have a clear understanding of whether you want to stay and work on your marriage or move on.
The Power of Healing
When you take the time to heal internally, you release the fear and become unstoppable in creating the life you desire. This process of healing is not just about forgiving your husband or getting over the infidelity; it’s about gaining the strength to trust again, to believe in yourself and to build a future that aligns with your values and desires.
If you can relate to this and you’re interested in exploring the strategies I use to navigate these three phases of healing, I invite you to join my free masterclass. The class provides detailed steps to help you navigate this challenging time. You can find the link for instant access here.