Feeling guilty for cheating on your partner or for anything that you know has caused so much pain is a good thing. It means you acknowledge the fact that you wronged someone and feel empathy for the people you’ve hurt. This guilty feeling will encourage you to do better and to avoid doing the same mistake.
But guilt can also eat you up. There with you is a wound that just doesn’t seem to heal. It gives birth to a certain kind of fear that hinders you from enjoying being in a relationship and even discourages you from entering into one. There’s self-hatred, and you blame yourself for how things have become.
Until it destroys you.
But only if you let it. There is a way for you to move past this phase. Everybody makes mistakes, and yours was cheating on the one you love. It doesn’t mean, however, that you need to dwell in that event. Overcoming guilt after cheating on your partner is possible. There are just some steps you need to take.
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5 Tips for Overcoming Guilt After Cheating on Your Partner
Learn to move forward by following these tips for overcoming guilt after cheating on your partner.
1. Acknowledge your mistakes
There’s no point in denying everything. Say you did it. Say it out loud and say it many times. And then take responsibility for your actions. Deal with it in the best way you know, with renewed thoughts and without causing more pain.
2. Try to make things right
Apologize as you must. Tell your partner about how you feel. A survey conducted by Online Doctor revealed that a good percentage of cheaters regret their unfaithfulness and would change things if they could. If you feel the same way, let your partner know that. If they want to say something, hear them out. Do not run away. Walking out of the situation will never solve the problem. You can ask them what you can do for them to feel better.
You’ve caused your partner pain, so if it takes them a long time to get over what happened, be more understanding. Be patient enough to wait until they heal.
3. Forgive yourself
One of the most important steps to finally overcoming guilt after cheating on your partner is to learn to forgive yourself for doing what you did. It’s not just your partner that you need to apologize to, apologize to yourself as well and accept that apology. There are a lot of reasons why people cheat, and you must have your own; whatever that is, you need to forgive yourself for it.
Free yourself from the chain that is guilt. It is the only way for you to move forward.
4. Talk to someone
Talking to someone always helps. Open up to the one you trust the most. It could be your partner whom you’ve cheated on or a therapist or a friend. It could be your parents even. Just let it all out. Get those worries and negative thoughts off your chest and off your system. Letting all those bottle up inside will emotionally and psychologically drain you. Cry, if you must.
5. Learn from what happened
Take it as an indicator that some things have to change. Things must have taken a bad turn after the infidelity, but you can still save your marriage or the relationship. Let this experience help you. Know what things you should and should not do. “Once a cheater, always a cheater,” they often say. But truth be told, if one only knew how to take positive learnings from a bad experience, you wouldn’t end up carrying that label for life. People can change, it just takes a lot of courage to do so, but it’s possible.
Guilt helps you grow, but only if you use it to correct your actions and not condemn yourself for making the wrong decisions. Learn to forgive yourself and move on from the dreadful past even if you know for yourself you were the one who wrote the bad chapter. It’s the only way for you to open up for what lies ahead and help you and your partner create a better future together.
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