Infidelity isn’t something that anyone wants to deal with. But, when you begin doubting your partner’s faithfulness, then you have to be prepared to face it and cope with the consequences. Often, many women blame themselves when this happens and easily accept the lies from their husbands. However, if you’re already thinking that he is cheating, you trust your instincts over your husband’s lies. While this reality can be hard to face, it can also bring clarity to your relationship. Here are the next steps to take if you think your husband is cheating.
Identify What You Feel
No one knows you better than yourself. Thus, if you’re not aware of your emotions, you can’t address this issue the right way. Note that we are all unique and deserve to be treated with respect emotionally, physically, and even spiritually. If you suspect that your husband is cheating, begin by identifying how you feel. Often, many people feel angry and betrayed. But, other deeper emotions fuel this. Try to identify this as it’ll help determine your reaction. Write your feelings on paper or draw them if words aren’t enough to capture them.
Make a Pro and Con List
It may not seem vital at the moment. However, it can help one face the reality ahead. Ask yourself if it is worth staying in the relationship, once you’ve confirmed your suspicions. Also, determine if you can and how you’ll move forward after confronting the infidelity issue. This for and against list can help you prepare your mind for what’s ahead. Note that suspicion can significantly grow if it’s not addressed. Sometimes we become so consumed in it until we start seeing validation where it is not. Writing this list can help get things out of your head and see them from a different perspective. And this can help you determine the way forward.
Analyze the Red Flags
Looking at previous patterns can help make things clear for this current situation. Has your previous/current partner ever cheated on you before? How did he act? What were your feelings? Did he completely change? By reflecting on what went wrong in the past relationships, you can understand why you’re suspicious. Note that one can project their past experiences and insecurities onto their new partners. But, doing this is just a way of reinforcing what they believe about people or themselves. Take time to identify familiar patterns and actions in your relationship to give yourself more choices on the next steps.
Talk to Supportive Friends
Find people who are willing to give you unbiased advice. When you think your partner is unfaithful, it’s wise that you take mature actions. Speaking things out can help look at your husband from a different perspective. Plus, if you’re talking to a person who knows you well, they’ll help you recognize familiar links. For example, they can remind you of how often you have these negative thoughts. Supportive friends do not have a hidden motive and would want the best for you. Therefore, even if you find out your husband is cheating after confronting him, you’ll have someone willing to help pick up the pieces. As such, you’ll not feel the need to isolate yourself or suffer alone.
Talk to Him about Your Feelings and Watch His Reaction
While you have a right to be angry, he’ll not listen with an angry voice. Therefore, talk to him in a tone that he can listen to and understand. It’s better that you approach it respectfully, even though it is hard. Remember that you’re doing it for yourself and not for him. Thus, address his behavior while still maintaining your confidence in the process.
Once he reacts, observe what he does. A cheating partner may deny it, become angry, and even blame you for his behavior. Check how he responds, including his body language. Is he shying away from looking you in the eye? Is he humble and apologetic?
Confront Him in a Safe Environment
Confronting your husband with cheating suspicions isn’t easy or comfortable. Thus, ensure that you both feel safe when having such a conversation. When you have this discussion in the wrong environment, you may end up not communicating or feeling hurt. If you think your partner may have an outburst, have this conversion in a busy place. However, a private place can also help you focus. Just remember that there isn’t a right or wrong environment. But, choose a place where your feelings and thoughts will be heard and valued.
Bring Evidence If You Must
You may need to make him understand why you are having those thoughts. Thus, if you have credit card statements, photos, or conversations on his emails or phone, don’t hesitate to use them. He may deny his behavior if you only confront him with words. But, if there’s actual evidence shown to him, he may admit the truth. After showing him the evidence, ask for honesty. This can help you know which steps to take. For instance, if it is a one-time affair, you may consider hiring a family therapist. But, if it’s ongoing, a sex addiction therapist might help.
Don’t Blame Yourself
Many societies often fault the woman when a marriage or relationship fails. As such, they end up feeling guilty for things they haven’t done. Some women begin questioning their self-worth if their partner cheats. However, you shouldn’t blame yourself for another person’s mistake or behavior. Don’t convince yourself that you’re the reason your husband is cheating. Instead, decide independently whether you want to be in a relationship that makes you feel insecure. If you choose to move on, don’t feel guilty for that. Many women aren’t trained to love themselves, and some consider self-love selfish. Thus, they often find themselves making decisions to suit their husbands. But, remember your feelings also matter. And you also should feel respected and valued.
Cheating shouldn’t be the end of a relationship. There are many ways that spouses can work on things after infidelity. However, the decision on whether or not to solve things is entirely yours. If it’s worth the risk and pain, you should stay in your marriage. If it’s not, don’t be scared to start a new journey.