Affairs don’t necessarily mean your marriage is over. But, rebuilding relationships is tricky when a cheating husband needs time to get over his affair.
In How Can I Forgive You?: The Courage to Forgive, the Freedom Not To, Janis Spring offers step-by-step, concrete instructions that help us make peace with others and with ourselves, while answering questions such as: How do I forgive someone who is unremorseful? When is forgiveness cheap? Is there anything wrong with refusing to forgive? How can my husband earn forgiveness?
Here’s one reader’s dilemma: “My husband of 9 years cheated on me,” says M on 7 Signs Your Marriage is Over. “He says he doesn’t want to lose me and loves me, but has feelings for the other person. He ended it with her, but she keeps texting him. He says he needs time to get over the affair. I want to work it out with him, and he says he does too. How long should I wait for him to get over his feelings for her? Is the marriage saveable if he loves two people? Any help would be appreciated.”
Here are a few thoughts on waiting for husbands to overcome affairs.
How Long Do You Wait for Your Husband to Get Over His Affair?
Of course, there is no cut-and-dried answer. Maybe it’ll take him two weeks to get over his feelings for the woman he had the affair with; maybe it’ll take two years. Maybe he’ll always love her (O daggers in your heart!).
More importantly, you need to figure out why you want to save your marriage. Why do you want to work it out with him? How badly do you want to stay married? Answering those questions may help you determine how long you should wait for him to get over the affair.
If you’re not sure what to do, read How to Get Help for Your Marriage.
Make sure your husband has cut off communication with her
M’s husband is still connected to the woman he had an affair with. It doesn’t matter that he said he ended things; the fact is, he’s still receiving text messages from her.
That is not acceptable. If he really wants to rebuild his marriage after an affair. He needs to change his phone number, get a new email address, find a different job – do whatever it takes to end the relationship.
If your husband is still communicating with the other woman, then you’ll be waiting for a long time for him to get over it. If he’s still in love with the woman he had an affair with, you’ll be waiting a long, long time.
Do you know why he had the affair? Understanding your husband’s motivation may help both of you heal. Read Why Men Cheat on Women – How to Stop a Man From Cheating for a marriage counselor’s perspective.
Assess your husband’s level of remorse and willingness to work on the marriage
“The ability to forgive [your husband for having an affair] makes you a better and stronger human being,” says Anne Bercht, author of My Husband’s Affair Became the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me. “It takes greater strength of character to rebuild a marriage after an affair, than to just give up and quit. If you really love your spouse, and your spouse expresses genuine remorse and is willing to do their part in rebuilding the marriage, there are greater rewards in staying than there are in giving up.”
Does your husband express genuine remorse for the affair? Is he willing to do his part to rebuild your relationship? Answering the “how long do I wait for my husband to get over his affair” question depends on his attitude.
Decide if you can live with a man who has feelings for another woman
Sure, a man can love two women at the same time. Love is boundless, limitless, timeless. A more important question is whether you want to be married to a husband who has feelings for another woman. And, it’s important to remember that feelings of love and intimacy don’t disappear overnight. Sometimes we never stop loving people.
Do you want to rebuild your marriage even if your husband is in love with the woman he had an affair with? It’s okay if you do – I judge not! This is a question only you can answer.
If you’re still confused, read How Do You Know When Your Marriage is Over?
What do you think – how long would you wait for your husband to get over his affair? Comments welcome below…I can’t offer marriage advice or counseling, but it might help you to share your experience.
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My prayer for your marriage is for healing, restoration, and growth. xo