How to Trust Your Husband After He Cheated on You

Forgiving and trusting your husband after he cheated on you is a daily effort – it’s not a one-time thing. These tips for healing your marriage when trust is broken will help you reconnect with your husband and rebuild your marriage.

“My husband cheated on me with his coworker, who has since left the company,” says L. on Is Your Marriage Over? “How do I forgive him after the affair? I can’t look at him, much less let him touch me. How do I trust him after he cheated on me? I want to forgive and move on but it’s so hard.”

Here’s what a marriage counselor says about cheating:

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

If your husband is hiding his affair from you – or trying to make you feel crazy for thinking he cheated – then forgiveness and trust will be MUCH more difficult. But if he’s honest about why and when he cheated, you might find trusting him again easier.

Healing Your Marriage When Trust Is Broken: Finding Forgiveness and Restoration is one of the most popular books on  forgiving and trusting your husband after an affair. It’s a long process that doesn’t happen overnight – it can take years to forgive him after he cheated.

Here are a few more tips for saving your marriage…

How to Trust Him After He Cheated on You

If you’re coping with an online affair, read How to Survive an Internet Affair.

Remember that trusting after an affair does not happen overnight

Learning to trust again after a betrayal such as an physical or emotional affair doesn’t happen once, nor does it happen overnight. Rebuilding trust is a process that involves ups and downs – even if you’re the most forgiving person in the world!

You will eventually learn to trust him after he cheated on you — but you have to work on it. And he’ll have to earn your trust.

Realize that whether you can forgive and trust depends on what you can live with

You need to decide if you’re willing to live with your boyfriend or husband as he is — because some people never change. You can try to support your partner through the worst parts of marriage — and it’s especially effective when both of you are equally commited!

But if both partners aren’t willing to work towards forgiving and trusting after cheating, then you need to accept your marriage for what it is…and not expect more.

Prepare for a lot of hard work

There aren’t any easy answers after a physical or emotional affair. It takes time, effort, and energy to build a healthy strong marriage that includes forgiveness and trust. You need to be honest about your needs, and know from the bottom of your heart that you can trust him not to cheat on you again.

If you need something that he can’t give you, then you have to decide how to meet your needs. If you think he should give you what you need, read 7 Signs Your Marriage is Over.

Remember that men and women perceive affairs differently

Remember that men think physical affairs are worse, and women feel emotional infidelity is more upsetting, according to a study in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. This seems to hold true in “real life”, too.

Fix Your Marriage

One of my friends’ husbands had a physical and emotional affair with her best friend, and she said it was so difficult to forgive and trust him again — but they held it together. She said saving her marriage would have been easier if it was “only” a physical affair. But he was in love with her best friend.

Know that “happily ever after” DOES exist!

I believe in happily ever after — but I know that it take effort, energy, time, and commitment. It’s hard enough building a happy marriage when nobody cheated, but forgiving and trusting after he cheated on you is super duper difficult.

That said, however, it is possible to build a better marriage. And your marriage may be stronger, happier, and healthier because he cheated. Many relationships are stronger because of infidelity – and the couples DO live happily ever after.

Remember that love isn’t just about saying “I love you”

In fact, that’s the easiest, laziest part of love! Anyone can say “I love you.” Real, committed, healthy, romantic love is about how you treat each other, whether you respect one another’s wishes, if you can talk about your problems, if you’re emotionally and spiritually connected, and if you have the same goals for the future.

Accept that the occasional romantic fascination or attraction for other people is normal

Instead of fighting your feelings or attraction to another person, accept how you feel. It’s OKAY to be attracted to other people, even if you’re married. But, acting on those feelings of attraction can destroy a marriage and lead to divorce.

If you don’t know if you can trust your husband after he cheated on you, look for signs you can trust a man after an affair.

forgiveness trust after cheating

If want to save your marriage, talk to a marriage counselor

Untangling emotional issues is very difficult, and a trained counselor can make a big difference. Marriage counseling doesn’t have to last for years or even months; sometimes it just takes a session or two to see what the issues are and how to resolve them. Then, it takes dedication to saving the marriage and the effort to love…

For marriage help from a counselor and author, 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.

For more suggestions on forgiving and trusting your husband after he cheated on you, read Marriage Crisis – Surviving When You Have Nothing Left.

Your thoughts are welcome below! I don't give advice, but you can get free relationship help from marriage coach Mort Fertel.

Could you forgive him after he cheated? Comments welcome below…

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5 thoughts on “How to Trust Your Husband After He Cheated on You

  • April Randall

    Me and my husband have been together for 3 yrs and married a yr a week ago he was out of town for schooling when it was over and he came home i had a wierd strong surge to look thru his phone now i almost wish i hadnt i found where he had texted a girl off of a craigslist single thing and sent her a nude pic and asked for one back. Now i never ever would have thought he would do this to me and as for me ive been 100% faithful. When i confronted him about it he said he had been bored and had a stupid moment, i told him how much he had hurt me and how he had betrayed my trust in him. He was torn up and swore on all he held sacred that he loves me and would never do it again because he doesnt want to lose me. I forgave him but im still not trusting him. Am i wrong? Is this truely a cheating situation?

  • Guptil

    Thank you, I’ve just been searching for advice on how to trust your husband after he cheated on you. I know you don’t give personal advice, but your article is helpful. I don’t feel as alone. And I do believe my husband is cheating, after 24 years of marriage.

  • Moira

    Don’t!!!!! I gave my husband a second and third chance and he still cheated and lied to me!! I am still hurting from his final betrayal and am sick of all the advice that is out their encouraging you to try again. He cheated on my after 35 years of marriage, I took him back, gave him my trust and he has cheated and lied to me 3 times again with the same woman – sorry but I’m done with having my trust and forgiveness disrespected.

  • Robin

    Three years ago my husband had a affair for almost a year behind my back he was seeing the girl from the club he is the president there and she was the bartender there. OMG it broke my heart more then words could ever say its still so hard to forgive him I dnt feel the same about him or want to be attractive to him I try but then the images of her and him appear im affard eventually he will do again 2 times he cheated before marriage and I Time that i know of when married. I think big part that he wants stay married is cause of kids but thats wrong i think if ur not happy why can’t he admit it.

  • Laurie Post author

    I don’t know if I could forgive my husband if he cheated on me, and trust him again. It really depends on why he cheated, who with, and the state of our marriage.

    But the chances are good that I wouldn’t be able to forgive him for cheating on me.