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How to Save Your Marriage After Infidelity and Trust Your Spouse Again

Yes, you can save your marriage after infidelity. Learning to trust your spouse again can be a long process — but it is possible to reconnect.

These tips on saving your marriage after emotional infidelity are based on reader questions and answers on my Tips for Surviving an Emotional Affair article.

Regarding emotional infidelity:

“It’s best to come clean as early as possible,” says marriage counselor Gary Neuman. “Be honest with your partner when you’re just beginning to become interested in someone else.”

If you’re trying to save your marriage and survive an internet or in-person affair, you might find Not “Just Friends”: Rebuilding Trust and Recovering Your Sanity After Infidelity

And, read on for tips on saving your marriage…

How to Save Your Marriage After Infidelity and Trust Your Spouse Again

Rebuilding trust after emotional affairs doesn’t happen quickly. Learning to trust again after a betrayal such as physical or emotional infidelity doesn’t happen once, nor does it happen overnight. Rebuilding trust is a process that involves ups and downs. Trust will be part of your marriage again, even after infidelity — but you have to work on it.

Whether you save your marriage depends on what you can live with. You need to decide if you’re willing to live with your partner as he or she is, because some people never change. You can try to improve a bad relationship — and it’s especially effective when both partners are equally commited! But if both partners aren’t willing to move forward together, then you need to accept your marriage for what it is….and not expect more.

There aren’t any easy answers after infidelity, because it takes work to build a healthy strong marriage and rebuild your relationship. Most love relationship advice is about being honest about your needs and finding ways to meet in the middle. If your partner needs something that you aren’t giving, then you need to find ways to give as much as possible without losing yourself — and vice versa!


The rest of this article has been moved to my new site, “How Love Blossoms”

 Getting Over an Affair – Help and Hope for Pastors’ Wives



For more marriage help from a trained counselor, read The Truth about Cheating: Why Men Stray and What You Can Do to Prevent It  by M. Gary Neuman — he’s currently writing a book about women who aren’t faithful.

If you have any questions or thoughts on saving your marriage after infidelity, please comment below…

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17 thoughts on “How to Save Your Marriage After Infidelity and Trust Your Spouse Again”

  1. Nothing is perfect and we get committed knowing that.its a matter of your marriage being worth the fight or not!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen

    Dear Anarghya,

    Thanks for your question, and for sharing your story. It sounds like you’re in a lot of pain…but I know you’re strong enough to work through this!

    I wrote this article for you:

    When Your Husband’s Work Seems More Important Than Your Marriage

    I hope it helps, and welcome your thoughts there or here.


  3. Dear laurie,
    I am 27 and have been with my husband for 9 years, married for 3 of those. We got together when I was 17 and we have been together all the time from college, graduation and now at work..
    We both work for the same organization.. We earn fairly well and have recently bought a beautiful house on a joint loan… It’s been a great time together.. But, since the last half year.. I don’t feel understood and loved any more…
    Around 6 months back my husband got an offer to work abroad for a year in another country 6000K away! I didn’t have the option to leave my job to be with him, as I had started working only a year back after my masters… I didn’t want him to take up the offer as I couldn’t imagine a life apart from each other…. Also, our current salaries leave us with a sufficient surplus every month.. But, he decided to take up the job.. According to him, he had to do so to meet his financial goals…

    From being together all the time, to not seeing him for the next 1 year.. I am not able to make this transition… It’s like, I am going through life on ‘auto pilot’.. Today, I ate an entire meal w/o actually tasting it.. It’s been more than a month now since he left, but I still wake up crying and miserable.. I know I have to deal with the cards that have been dealt to me.. But sometimes the pain is unbearable..

    I don’t know why financial goals, career, parents.. Everything else became primary… and only I stood secondary.. I sometimes wonder if all love is lost.. How could he take the decision to leave me and go away for a whole year! Sadly, when he initially told me about the offer, the thought of staying apart hadn’t even crossed his mind.. When i brought up the topic, he accused me of not celebrating in his success.. I was very much disappointed and hurt when he said this..

    Now that he is away, he calls regularly.. He says he misses me.. But I am not able to accept it at face value…
    Pl. help me. I need guidance on how to make my marriage work..


  4. My marriage definitely related to your topic. Me and my husband been together for summed of 10 years, and our relation been also started from his infidelity from his ex wife. And now, I’m emotionally struggling to bring our marriage relationship back (to trust him again) because my husband still seeing and communicating to his other woman. Though my husband doing his best to bring back my trust to him, it’s still hard for me to not to suspect him that this will not happen again…..because this not happen once but many times in our marriage.. he discussed to me what was the reason why he did it and now I’m also doing my best to do what he wanted, to proof to him that he is forgiven and still wanted to fixed and save our marriage.

  5. Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen

    Both my mom and my aunt (identical twins!) were NOT the marrying kind, and had strings of marriages and relationships throughout their lives. Some of us — both men and women — just can’t be tied down to marriage. I don’t think there’s anything unhealthy about being single, unless we’d rather be in a relationship or married!

    Some singles have “friends with benefits”, which takes care of the need for intimacy and passion. That’d be difficult for me, but I know people who wouldn’t have it any other way.

  6. Thank You very much for the input Laurie, I DO realize that it would be a decision that each individual must make, and that commitment vary, situations vary,etc. I have been married 3 times myself, and felt secure with my decision when I went my “own way”. Only recently I left my 3rd (and last)husband, after 25 years of marriage ( to a man who felt his addictions to drugs were a higher priority). I have came to realize that I am not the marrying kind of person. It is a struggle for me each day learning to “get along” without a man in my life,but feel better about my decision, I certainly miss the s*x and intimacy, but, for the past 15(!)years I have been without that.I am not sure even how I go about “fixing” that, and m*******tion leaves me satisfied, but still lonely for the touch and passion.I will continue to learn how to live as each day passes, and keep a bright outlook on the days ro come! Seasons Greetings!

  7. Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen

    Hi Shay,

    Thanks for being here on Quips & Tips; sorry to hear about your parents’ marriage. I know what you mean about the “permanent scowl” — I’ve encountered people like that, and it’s so sad.

    There aren’t any easy answers on your “When is it okay to get divorced?” question. For some couples, it’s okay to get divorced when the passion fades — and that means different things for different people! Other couples get divorced because they don’t have the energy, patience, or commitment to work out their problems. Others get divorced because they’ve faced a major trauma and can’t work through it, such as losing a child or infertility. And still others get divorced because they think life’s too short to live in a marriage that doesn’t make them happy at least half of the time!

    As Leo Tolstoy said, “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”

    Regarding leaving a marriage, I wrote an article for women about knowing when it’s time to let go of the relationship and move on. In that article, I discuss a variety of needs that — if they aren’t being met — may be a precursor to divorce.

    Here’s the link to that article:

    Signs It’s Time to Leave Your Husband

    I agree, Shay, that staying in an unhappy marriage can scar the kids worse than divorce. I suspect your parents had their reasons for staying together — reasons that were very real and valid to them. They thought they were making the best decision they could…they were doing the best they could for themselves and their children.

    You summed it up well with your statement about being more commited to their commitment than their own happiness or their kids’ well-being. That sense of responsibility can bring guilt, which can motivate people to stay in unhappy marriages. For some couples, it’s easier to stay in a hell they know rather than venture into the unknown.

    Sorry I don’t have any clear answers for you, and I hope your own relationship and marriage is happy, healthy, and strong….

    I wish you all the best and hope to see you around again!


  8. My parents are a perfect example, After 67 years of marriage, they rarely speak to each other… My mothers once beautiful face is now knotted in to a permanent scowl. I recall the saying of staying married “for the children”… I know for a fact that it scars the children sometimes for the worse (more often than not.

  9. When, what or Why is okay(?) to get divorced?, I have watched many couples remain married even though their entire life was sad,lonely,miserable,scared,unhappy and loveless as if they were more committed to their commitment than they were to each other…?

  10. Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen

    Hi Raymond,

    Yes, I can see how it’d be difficult to talk to a stranger about your marriage — especially after infidelity! It can be embarrassing and shameful to admit you had an affair.

    I liken it to seeing a doctor. It’s uncomfortable to expose various body parts to a stranger or someone you see once a year, but that’s their job. Doctors are used to seeing all sorts of body parts in all sorts of conditions. It may be difficult for the patient, but it’s the norm for the doctor.

    Same with marriage counselors, who are usually experienced with giving love and relationship advice. It may be awkward or difficult to talk to a counselor, but it may be the healthiest thing you can do for your marriage.

    Thanks for your comment, Raymond…it got me thinking! 🙂


  11. Hi Laurie, You have written an excellent post, but I personally feel you should first, talk through your problems together.If there are still unresolved issues maybe talk to a marriage counselor, if you both agree. Many people in my experience find it difficult to talk to strangers about their most intimate problems.

    Best Wishes, Raymond

  12. The first bit of advice is to be yourself.Women like to be around a confident guy, they find them far more attractive than someone who puts on a show.

  13. Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen

    Thanks, Marriage Advice.

    Pru — I’m glad you and your wife are getting past the infidelity. It takes time, but you may have a stronger, happier marriage in the end!

  14. Thank you for writing this article about saving your marriage after infidelity. I am not ready to talk about my affair, but I might be able to in the future.

  15. I read the book Not Just Friends and found it really helpful. My wife had an internet affair and we’re getting past it.

  16. Your blog is very helpful for those who are in marriage problem these days. Points that you have mentioned is very impressive and looks effective too.
    Thanks for sharing this blog.