Does the Guilt of Cheating Ever Go Away?
Does the guilt of cheating ever go away?
Relationships work on the basis of trust. When trust is broken, everything else falls apart. When you cheat on a partner, you are not only betraying her but for yourself too. The mistake that you commit during one weak moment can wreck the rest of your life if you aren’t careful.
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More often than not, the guilt of cheating makes a person (man or woman) depressed. He cannot come to terms with the fact that he cheated on a person who loved you and cared for you. You may have had your own reasons to cheat on your partner, but nothing will take away the guilt that you feel afterward.
The guilt of cheating will never go away completely from your heart because you have hurt a lot of your loved ones in the bargain. However, that doesn’t mean you have to torture yourself with this guilt and life your life like an oppressed soul for the rest of your lives. Like we all know, our mistakes are our best experiences.
Yes, you cheated in your weak moment, but it is up to you to take this incident as learning and become a better person than before. It is easier said than done, we agree! However, it is important to take a small step in this process of healing. If you don’t, you can slip into depression and cause bigger problems for you and your family.
Here is how you can reduce your guilt of cheating and not allow it to spoil the rest of your life.
1. Self-Forgiving is the Key
After cheating, you may feel guilty that you decide to speak to someone to clear things in your head. Most of you may run to your nearest church to confess your guilt. You may feel lighter at the end of your confession, but how long does the lightness stay? For a few days, maybe?
When that doesn’t work out, you start visiting professionals to get mental relaxation and get rid of your guilt. A few sessions may help you before the guilt comes back to hit you with a vengeance.
Speaking to others does help when you are dealing with the guilt of cheating, but not if you haven’t spoken to yourself first. If you haven’t forgiven yourself, you shouldn’t expect the world to do that for you.
After the cheating incident, when you are dealing with an immense amount of guilt, take a break from your work to self-assess the feelings in your head.
Why did I do what I did? Am I that bad a person to have stooped so low? Will my partner and family members understand when I explain my guilt? Will I be able to look into their eyes when I meet them next? These are some of the questions that you have to ask yourself. Getting answers to these questions will help you heal better than before.
With this clarity, when you confess to others, it will work wonders for you. Yes, the guilt will not go away, but the intensity would have reduced considerably. You need to understand and get convinced that you are a far better person than you were when you had made a mistake.
2. Feel Happy for your Partner
Not all relationships are strong enough to withstand a cheating episode. When you have forgiven yourself and have had the courage to open up to your partner, she may not forgive you. Don’t feel bad at all. After what you did to her, she is bound to walk off from the relationship.
If you really love her and care for her, you will feel your guilt coming down considerably when you see her happy in her life after moving on from you. Sometimes, your mistake may have been the best thing to have happened to her!
It is your cheating that helped her find a person who deserved her love & trust more than you. Feel happy for her and watch your guilt getting reduced to a tiny knot that settles in your tummy.
3. Become a Better Person
Like we have been telling all the while, the guilt of cheating will never go away from your life. It will remain in a tiny corner that may peep up at rare, uncomfortable occasions. The best you can do is to reduce the number of occasions it peeps up. Learning from your mistake and becoming a better person from it, is one of the best ways of healing.
You made a mistake in your weak moment and you have accepted the fact to yourself. You have been courageous enough to talk about it to your partner as well. Now, your partner may react in two ways. If she thinks she can handle you, she will be kind enough to give you one more chance. If she has zero-tolerance to mistakes, she will walk away.
Regardless of how the events turn out, your life gives you a chance to become a better person. You will turn into a new leaf by learning from your mistakes.
When you ever get into a relationship again, you know better than to hurt others’ feelings. You will be the best possible partner for the new person in your life. That’s what guilt can do to you if channelized in the right direction.
We have summarized the above steps into the following simple tips that you can follow to help reduce the intensity of the guilt that you feel after cheating:
1. Take Onus of your Mistake
Yes, you have made a mistake and you feel sorry about it. That’s how your attitude should be when you are self-assessing and when you are opening up to others. Never dodge away from the guilt that you are feeling inside. It will only make you feel more miserable in the long run.
Never ever justify your actions, by blaming your partner for forcing you into cheating. That will never work in a relationship. There can be no reason in the world for betraying the trust of another person in a relationship. So be true to yourself and your partner by taking responsibility for the mistake.
2. Give it Some Time
A hasty move from your part is what you caused you to cheat on your partner. Don’t make the same mistake again when you are trying to heal or get over the guilt. If you have cheated on your partner, don’t be in a rush to brush the issue under the rug and move on like nothing ever happened.
Even if you do so, you may be able to put a brave face before others for a few days, but everything comes crumbling down, eventually.
Give it some time so that you can assess what made you make a mistake in the first place. Try to forgive yourself completely before you open up to your partner about the cheating.
Have an open and empathetic discussion about your betrayal. Give your partner enough time to decide what she wants to do. If she accepts you back into her life, be grateful. If she decides to move on, respect her for her decision.
3. It is not the End of the World!
One of the best things you can do to reduce the guilt of cheating is to know that it is not the end of the world. Accept your mistake, confess it to y9our loved ones with utmost honesty and move on.
Speak to experts to work on ways of healing so that you can walk with great confidence for the rest of your lives. Don’t let one mistake ruin your life. In your path to redemption, try to become a better person. That’s the best thing you can do for yourself.
What does a relationship survive better – remorse or guilt?
While talking about relationships and guilt, there is a never-ending debate about the term remorse as well. Most of the people don’t know to tell the difference between the two terms – remorse and guilt.
They may look similar, but there is a subtle difference between the two. According to psychology experts, there is a good chance of a relationship surviving when a cheating person expresses remorse for his cheating, instead of guilt.
When a person feels remorseful for his cheating, he wholeheartedly apologizes to his partner at frequent intervals for his terrible actions. He will do anything to make you feel happy, and he won’t budge at all. He knows that he has done something that has broken you completely.
So, he will not stop at making you feel better. He will respect you and give you full freedom to choose whatever you want to do, even if that means you want to walk away.
To err is human; so, mistakes do happen. Anybody can have a weak moment and cheat on his partner. The challenge is to get over this guilt and do what is good for yourself and your partner. Accepting your mistake and being truthful about it are the main keys to help reduce the guilt of cheating, though you cannot completely wipe it away from your heart.
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