I don’t need to tell you how hurtful and shameful cheating is and how difficult forgiving infidelity is. If you are the one who strayed from your vows and committed adultery I know you wish you could turn back time and rethink that choice you made. What you did was terribly wrong and I hope that you truly understand that.
On the flip side, if you were the one who was cheated on, my prayers go out for you. You are facing such pain, anger and bitterness that I’m sure you find hard to express to anyone else. It’s hard to communicate what it feels like when you know your spouse has slept with someone else. As a result, you bottle up those feelings and keep them inside until you find yourself about to burst. That’s when you turn to someone you trust to pour out your heart.
Most people struggle with the same questions once the dust has settled and the initial shock has worn off. Should I leave now or wait to see what happens? Is this the first affair or one of many? Should I keep this to myself or talk to someone else about the infidelity? There are so many questions and very few simple answers.
One of major questions that folks struggle with is, “How Long Will It Take To Forgive Infidelity?”
The best answer that I can give you is that it will take as long as you or your spouse needs it to. I know that sounds like a cop-out but it is not. Here’s why;
There are two things that must happen for infidelity to be forgiven.
- The cheating person must seek true forgiveness and earn back the respect and trust that was lost as a result of the affair.
- The person cheated on must truly forgive and allow the cheating spouse to get back into his or her emotional mind and heart.
It is impossible to put a time limit on when those two things will occur. What has to happen is that both individuals must be working towards the same goal, i.e., a restored and healed relationship.
If only one of the individuals is working towards forgiveness and reconciliation, the process will take longer or may never come to being.
I can tell you that it is possible to have total forgiveness, even if you don’t feel like it’s possible at this moment. Please don’t conclude that your relationship can’t be saved based on how you feel now. Don’t make decisions right now based on feelings. Your judgment is probably a little cloudy at this time.
If you want to see your marriage healed, then work towards healing your marriage. For more information on dealing with infidelity, see here; Dealing With Infidelity