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How to Get Over Cheating

If you're unhappy in your relationship, try a different approach! Learn how The Hero Instinct can be the key to securing a man's love, attention, and devotion for life.

These tips on how to get over cheating in a relationship are from a family therapist who was shocked to discover her own husband was having an affair.

If anyone knows how to recover from cheating, Vikki Stark does. Wife Abandonment Syndrome is a phrase she uses to describe how husbands detach from their wives and move in with the women they cheated with.

“The type of man who abandons often appears to be unusually moral and trustworthy, making it even harder for the wife to accept that his words are empty justifications,” writes Stark on her website Runaway Husbands. “The most important first step in healing for a woman in this situation is the realization that her husband is not the man she thought she knew and that he never was.”

How do you get over cheating? By accepting that your husband isn’t the man you thought he was.

Another important step towards healing and getting over cheating is connecting with women who are dealing with the same pain and betrayal. Read How to Cope When Your Husband Leaves You for Another Woman. Don’t forget the comments section; you’ll discover women who are surviving what you’ve been through – and worse.

How to Get Over Cheating

“My husband never mentioned that he was unhappy or thinking of leaving me,” writes Vikki Stark in her book Runaway Husbands. “Until the moment of his revelation [that he was cheating and wanted to leave her], I was deeply in love and believed him to be, too….I had no idea.”

Stark’s husband lied to her for years. He took trips with the woman he cheated with and lied about how he spent his time. Stark was shocked to discover he cheated on her, but she found ways to get over the pain his cheating caused. She and her husband didn’t rebuild her marriage, and she created the book and website called Runaway Husbands.

In Runaway Husbands: The Abandoned Wife’s Guide to Recovery and Renewal, Stark doesn’t just describe her story, she helps wives cope with the pain and shock of finding you their husbands had affairs. It’s a solid, helpful resource for women who need to know how to get over cheating.

These tips on how to get over cheating are from her book.

Realize the traumatic effect cheating has 

“In trauma, the mind’s normal thinking process is flooded and temporarily damaged,” writes Stark. “To ensure our survival, humans have a primitive need for our lives to have a reliable form and consistent meaning. Without it, we cannot adequately prepare for the future.”

It’s not just a mild shock that your husband was cheating, it’s a grave, threatening trauma that affects your mind, body, and soul. This type of psychological trauma can lead to anxiety, stress, depression, despair, and even post-traumatic stress disorder.

You’re not just learning how to get over cheating, you’re learning how to survive a traumatic blow to your psyche.

Create a healthy, life-giving mantra

“[Your mantra] will act as shorthand to remind you of how you should be thinking and will replace other, more destructive thoughts,” writes Stark.

A mantra is a symbol of where you want to go, who you want to be, and how you will get there. Where your thoughts go, your life will follow.

In Runaway Husbands a woman whose husband cheated on her during their 27 years of marriage says, “I wrote LET IT GO” on index cards and placed them everywhere I was likely to look…That constant re-affirmation of doing the only thing I really could do was a great help to me.”

How does a mantra help you get over cheating? It reminds you that even though one stage of your life is over, you do have control over your mind and other parts of your life. To create a mantra, choose three words that describe the state of mind you’d like to be in. Repeat them to yourself when you feel sad, stressed, confused, or depressed.

If you don’t know if he’s cheating, read Is He Cheating? What to Do When You Suspect an Affair.

Accept that the relationship you thought you had is over

Whether or not you stay with your husband, you have to accept that everything is different now.

“The wife often gets stuck in the rut of struggling to understand how things could have changed so radically and assessing if there is anything she can do to influence the turn of events,” writes Stark. “That requires deep thinking about what compelled her husband to leave and whether there is any possibility of repair. She may grasp at straws, trying to come up with a desperate deal to delay the inevitable.”

What do you think about these tips on how to get over cheating? I welcome your comments below.

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.” ~ Albert Einstein.


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6 thoughts on “How to Get Over Cheating”

  1. My husband is a repeat cheater I have alwAys tried to forgive and save our family he recently left me again this time cutting all strings not calling or texting my heart hurts so bad I need advice

  2. Dear Cinderella,

    I’m sorry for what you’re going through; finding out your husband has been cheating with his ex-wife is devastating. It’s a major blow, and I can feel your pain.

    I have no answers, and I don’t know what to say. I encourage you to talk to someone you trust in person, or even a counselor. I don’t know what your future holds, or what you should do. There are no easy “how to get over cheating” tips, even though I wrote this article! It’s just never that simple.

    Here’s something I wrote a couple days ago – and the book I featured (After the Affair) is excellent. I encourage you to read that book, because it will help you sort through your grief, pain, and shock.

    Here’s the article:
    Rebuilding Trust in a Relationship After a Secret Love Affair

    Here’s the book:
    After the Affair: Healing the Pain and Rebuilding Trust When a Partner Has Been Unfaithful

    Take good care of yourself, for you are worth taking good care of.


  3. My husband just told me a few days ago that he’s been sleeping with his ex wife for the last 2 months. I don’t know what to do, what to say, how to respond or react to it…I’m just still in shock. They share children who he drops to her home once per week for a night . He says he told her he was going to tell me, I don’t even know if that means they’re over. This is the 2nd episode of their ‘affair’. I don’t trust him anymore. I don’t know if I believe or want to believe when he says it’s over. Their kids live with us and our little one, and it just hurts everyday. How do I move on from this. I don’t trust when he leaves the house. I just don’t trust his words, I don’t trust him. I don’t know what to do. I still can’t believe he did this again. I feel foolish for even staying after the first time. . . Help me please.

  4. Dear Babydoll,

    What would be worse for you in the long run:

    1) Taking a relationship break and experiencing freedom, so you have a chance to try life out on your own (even though you’ll miss your boyfriend)?

    2) Staying with your boyfriend, learning how to get over his cheating, and never experiencing life on your own?

    When you make big life decisions, sometimes it’s the scariest and most painful ones that are the right ones. The right decisions always involve sacrifice, blood, sweat, and tears…and they’re never easy. But they’re right because they improve our lives in ways we can’t even imagine.

    What do you think you should do?

  5. My boyfriend of almost 2 years is as of October of 2016 turned 18, not yet a man, cheated. But he never cries except when he thinks he’s losing me or I’m leaving him. He begged on his knees for me to stay, talks about how he wants to marry me, setting all these goals and promises me a ring to symbolise his vow to never hurt me again…. I don’t know what to do. I live with him, I lost my virginity to him, and gave my everything to make him happy and keep him satisfied but it still wasn’t good enough. Now I’m feeling like I want to experience some freedom and try things out by myself but I still love him and would miss him dearly if we split. What should I do? I know if we split it would be too hard on him to stay in my life as I live it without him as my mate.