So you’ve had an affair. This is generally seen as a pretty bad thing to do in a relationship, particularly if you and your partner had an agreement that you were going to be monogamous.
If your partner knows, it’s likely that your relationship is less compassionate right now and more combative, so what do you do if you’re hoping to patch things up and move on?
Clinical psychologist Rachel Andrew, from UK relationship advice service Relate, told The Guardian that there are a few things you can do in an attempt to mitigate the fallout.
Firstly, Andrew says lying is now off the table in your relationship, adding that there can be no further bombshells to catch your partner by surprise.
“Keeping emotional secrets from a partner who is taking you back might seem wise, but a clean breast offers more peace of mind in the long-term. Obviously, revealing that you took your lover to the same beach where you proposed to your wife might well prompt an eruption, but not nearly as much as if something like this is revealed a year later.”
Even though Andrew has banned the porky pie, she does have one caveat when it comes to trying to mend fences post affair.
“The one area total transparency doesn’t apply is sex. No matter how much you’re questioned about what you and your lover did together, no specifics. Especially if you’re asked in bed. Stay calm and keep saying it was the worst mistake of your life: you want to leave it in the past and concentrate only on your future.”
Other nuggets of advice Andrew shared include don’t be bullied by your partner, so even though you’ve done the wrong thing, it’s still okay to not accept hurtful behaviour they may throw your way. She also added that blaming your partner is a no-no. She explains that at the end of the day, you made the decision to stray and if you feel you may have done that because something was lacking in your relationship try and instigate more of that. So, intimacy as an example, try and foster that without being pointed about it. One way of doing this could be giving your partner more kisses and affection as opposed to saying: “The lack of intimacy in our relationship is why I cheated.” That would be very bad.
Would you stay with your partner if they cheated on you? Have you been able to patch things up after an affair? Tell us more in the comments below.