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How to Get Over the Pain of Being Cheated On

If you’re shocked and shattered because of his unfaithfulness, you need to take these three steps to get over being cheated on. Here’s how to move past the pain and shock, and blossom into forgiveness and healing.

how to get over pain of being cheated on“I’ve only been married for a year and a half, but we’ve been together for four years,” says Sandra on 7 Healthy Ways to Let Go of Someone You Love. “I recently found out that my husband was constantly lying to me and sneaking around to be with other women. He has private pictures and he wrote messages to lure other women, telling them that he’s their future husband. He told them not to be scared, to trust him. He’s a very dishonest man, I’ve loved him and supported his goals over the years. I’m still in love with him, yet I want to leave him but I do not know how. He’s all I have. Please help me.”

First, you need to stop thinking that he is all you have! That is not true. It is a lie that you have nothing but this man. You have much more than that – but it’s hard to see all the good you have when you’re shattered because of betrayal. Here are three steps towards getting over being cheated on…


There are many reasons it’s devastating when someone cheats on you. For instance…

  • Being cheated on feels like a direct attack on your self-worth
  • It’s offensive and gross to think someone you love could be intimate and romantic with someone else
  • Your identity is connected with who you are as a girlfriend, wife, and lover. So, being cheated on changes how you see yourself
  • You trusted and loved this man, and you never thought he’d cheat on you. You might not even be able to believe it, even when you know in your heart that it’s true
  • Being cheated on and lied to makes you feel foolish, like you were duped – especially if your boyfriend or husband asked friends, family, coworkers, or others to lie for him

Take a moment to think about the pain of being cheated on. It is painful – and that’s why it’s not easy to just learn how to get over being cheated on! Infidelity is a hurtful thing to experience. It’s terrible and traumatic, and it destroys relationships.

How to Get Over Being Cheated On

Your feelings of betrayal, shock, grief, and devastation are painful and heavy, but you need to work your way through them. Don’t rush into the “I have to get over this!” stage until you allow your mind and heart to accept that he cheated on you.

And, take time to understand why it’s so difficult to accept this type of betrayal in a relationship. You might also be interested in learning why people cheat in relationships.

Understand why infidelity is so devastating to your heart and soul

Love is addictive. We need to be loved; we’re wired to be and stay in relationships. We are made to be connected in relationship, to love and be loved in return. We were created to be in unity with each other and with our Creator. We were made to be together; even thinking about the boyfriend or husband you love activates the same parts of the brain associated with addiction, motivation, and reward.

So, any type of breakup is painful! Even the breakup of an unhealthy relationship is difficult to get over. But a relationship rift caused by cheating is devastating.

When you’re cheated on, you experience a sharp rejection that pierces your heart and soul. This rejection prompts a “neurochemical withdrawal”, according to anthropologist Helen Fisher. In ‘It’s Over: Bounce Back From a Bad Breakup’ in Psychology Today magazine, she says love is a wonderful addiction when it’s going well, but it’s a painful withdrawal when it goes poorly.

Give yourself time to grieve the end of your relationship

Even if you choose to stay with your boyfriend or husband, your relationship as you knew it is over. Your perception of him has changed – and no advice on how to get over cheating will bring you back to the day you met, fell in love, and gave him your heart.

That part of your relationship is over. Grieve it, even if you stay with him. Work through the feelings of betrayal, pain, loss, anger, and disappointment. Take time to accept what he did and how you feel about it. What is the “best” way to grieve and get over being cheated on? It depends on you. You need to try different ways to heal – such as writing about your pain, talking to a counselor, reading books on how to get over being cheated on, and changing how you see yourself.

If you believe that your boyfriend or husband is all you have, then you need to change your beliefs. If you think you’ll never be loved again, you need to challenge your thoughts. If your self-worth is tied up in your relationship, then you need to examine the source of your self-worth.


Renew your sense of self-worth

This is one of the most important tips on how to get over being cheated on: rebuild your identity and self-image. Renew your sense of self-worth. Restore your self-esteem. If you believe that your boyfriend or husband is all you have, then you will never get over his infidelity.

How to Get Over Being Cheated On

How to Get Over the Pain of Being Cheated On

Your self-worth should not be tied to any relationship or any man. A relationship – whether it’s with your boyfriend, husband, parent, child, or family member – is one part of who you are. A relationship is not your identity, and it should not be the source of your self-worth.

The more you get your self-worth and identity from your role as a girlfriend or wife, the more difficult it will be to figure out how to get over being cheated on. Why? Because your boyfriend’s infidelity is a direct attack on who you are. If your self-worth is tied up in your relationship, then his actions are a direct reflection of you.

What to Do Next

Take specific steps towards renewing your self-worth. Do not let your boyfriend or husband’s actions determine how you see yourself! You were created with love and care. God made you exactly the way you are for a specific purpose. Do not override God’s wisdom by choosing to see yourself in light of a man who cheats and lies to people who love him.

Decide if you want to stay in this relationship. If you want to rebuild your relationship, read How to Forgive and Recover From Your Spouse’s Infidelity.

Share your thoughts about being cheated on. While I can’t offer specific advice on how to get over being cheated on, I do read every comment. I encourage you to write about what you’re going through, because writing often brings clarity and insight. Writing can help you figure out how you feel, and help you heal. Feel free to respond to other readers’ comments if you feel led.

“Nothing in the universe can stop you from letting go and starting over.” ~ Guy Finley.


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35 thoughts on “How to Get Over the Pain of Being Cheated On”

  1. It’s been over a year since I found out my husband of 22 years had a 2-3 year affair right under my nose. We decided to try and work through it and rebuild our relationship. This is the hardest thing I ever done in my life. I have just about destroyed every part of myself trying to ease the pain. It refuses to go and I am obsessed with him. I can’t seem to get over the anger and I’m frightened of things I will do to myself. I’m seeking clinical help now but it’s going to be a lon journey to get myself back.

  2. I was divorced a year ago, went into another relationship with someone else. I was head over heels in love, no one even caught my attention as all was driven to him and only him. He made me feel like I was the only girl in the world made me laugh even though I couldn’t even remember when I last I laughed as much as he made me. He could put a smile on my face in an instant. I have a 4 year old son from my previous marriage so in the beginning I made it clear I don’t have time for games cause of my son and don’t just want to introduce anybody to him. About 5 months into the relationship I came across phone call conversations between him and another girl, I was devastated as this was going on since day one we met, started chatting and he kept it going. The conversations haunts me till this day and the names he called it. What makes it worst straight after he called and emailed and video called her he will phone me and tell me how much he misses me and cant wait to see me. Then I found out she is not the only one, we work together as well so he was flirting with EVERY single girl in the office. I confronted him and even gave him a chance to come clean and tell me everything. Only to find out 7 months after our confrontation that he still kept lying to me about one of the girls he said was only a school friend. Only told me then she was his ex and he also called her and flirted etc. I a absolutely devastated a year later and can’t get over the hurt and betrayal. He does not want to let me go, I have ended the relationship so many times before. It’s like he has a hold on me somehow, I know it sound silly. I have completely changed, I don’t even know who this person is I have become. I am quiet, I don’t plan things anymore or go out. I don’t trust anyone and I have so much of anger and hate in me. What makes me even more sad is that my son is so attached to him and he knew what I told him from the start. How do I get over this and be myself again? I have never been this depressed in my life some days my son is the only thing that keeps me still breathing. I hate the girls he cheated with and I hate him even more. I don’t think I will ever open up to any other man again. I feel so alone and y thoughts haunt me at night. I can’t even bring myself to try and be happy or change my moods. he made me feel like I was not enough and now that stuck in my head.

  3. Some humans are just plain selfish. I think most people struggle with depression, suffering is a part of the human experience.It is however selfish to want everything to go his way all the time. I believe you deserve so much better. Its not your job to fix or help him. Any loyalty you have towards him ended the day he decided to be unfaithful to you. Sure nobody is perfect and we all make mistakes but you really deserve better.

  4. I have been with my girlfriend for 10 years. Some really good times & some rough times too. I have always been there for her, helping her in every aspect of life. Trying to motivate & inspire her, trying to help her with self esteem & self worth & also with financial education & savvy. She struggles with depression & motivation, ever since we first met. 10 months ago i discovered that she was cheating on me with a gross old neighbour who appears to have slept with almost half the town…He is the opposite of me in every way.It took serious work for me to keep it together & also lots of investigating to uncover her lies & depth of betrayal. Eventually all came out and it was very bad. I was sleeping away from home 3 nights per week due to work obligations & she was messing around behind my back. He is a tinder whore who also has a girlfriend. Would sleep with my girlfriend one night and his girlfriend the next unprotected & lord knows how many others. In an attempt to make the relationship work & take responsibility for my mistakes within the relationship i gave her whatever she asked for.She asked for space so i slept at work.When i eventually discovered the truth via confronting the affair partner & also discovering an empty morning after pill packaging at home, her reaction was quite evil. She told me to take my s**t , leave my key and get the f**k out of her house. Keeping in mind that we share the cottage 50/50 in payments & all the furniture bought by me. I asked her if she felt this was a decent way to end a 9year relationship that once was filled with love. I got nothing except coldness. I took my belongings but left all the furniture and our cats. We were separated for a month & it was so traumatic for me. How a good girl could go so very bad, betray herself and me. It made no sense and was devastating. After a month i decided to let go & i asked for my furniture back to which she said yes & we arranged to meet up. I still love this girl & we decided to try to work on the relationship as i myself am not a perfecr human being. Its been 9 months back together and i am not so sure of anything. She lies and continues to do so, i have gotten nothing but trickle truth along the way as well as lots of anger & aggression plus manipulation. Its crazy that it took 10 years for me to see this side of her. Is is a beautiful human being in so many ways but this dark side of her isnt nice & i am starting to believe that she is quite damaged & holding me back in my life. I have tried so hard to make this relationship work & i have done so much inner work but i really cannot get past her lies that she refuses to come clean with & her aggressive behaviour with conflict resolution. We recently moved to a new house, its a beautiful place & i thought it would be a new beginning but i really just cant get past the lies & unwillingness to divulge the full truth. My guess is that she actually wanted to leave me for this guy but he was just toying with her & when reality hit home she realised how good i am & didnt want to loose me. I can forgive the infidelity but i cannot understand why she doesn’t want to share the entire truth with me.

  5. We’ve been together with my boyfriend for 3 and a half years, out of which we’ve spent 2 years (on and off) in a long distance relationship. He was working abroad and I was in my second year of university when I’ve decided from one day to another to move to another country just to be with him. I’ve left the university, I’ve left my friends and family in hope of finally being happy with my loved one. One rocky year has passed since. We’ve had good times and bad times but unfortunately the bad outweights the good. He never treated me the way I wanted to be treated and I haven’t listened to him when he was talking. Due to being unhappy and depressed, I’ve gained some weight.(about 5 kgs) He told me numerous times that I should lose weight and I tried but failed every time because I felt no support from him and I felt like he only cares about my weight, nothing else that I do for him. Eventually, everything became monotonous, we never had fun with each other and we stopped having sex. I felt like the biggest piece of sh* in the world. I knew that he was not attracted to me anymore. One year after moving abroad for him, I’ve now found out that he’s been with another woman for a month, he’s cheated on me while I was at home for Christmas. I’ve been suspicious for a while and even when I had evidence, he kept telling me that I’m crazy for making things up and being too jealous. I was right after all, he admitted that he’s cheated. Didn’t even ask for forgiveness, he said that I have all the right to hate him. He says that he loves me and that I’m the most important person in his life but it’s just not working. I asked him if he wants to be with the other woman and he said that he doesn’t know because he can already see that she’s not someone to be with on the long run. I feel devastated, disappointed and hurt. I can’t get the thought of him being with someone else out of my head. I need to move out as soon as possible but I haven’t found a room yet. I need to start over my whole life and I have never been so scared. I wanted to spend the rest of my life with this person. All I wanted is to be happy with him. I can’t bear the thought that it’s all over. He’s sleeping next to me right now while his phone is chiming (it’s probably the other girl). I just can’t stand this whole situation and I don’t know what I did to deserve this. I gained 5 kgs? That’s the problem? Is appearance really all that matters to men? I can’t possibly ever be the same motivated and cheerful person I once was. I gave him too much and let him destroy me. I feel physically sick just from the thought of what he did. But I know that it’s not the end of the world. I know that I’ll start a new life and eventually get over this. Sooner or later, it’s all gonna be alright.

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