When Forgiving Infidelity Isn't Possible
An extramarital affair violates trust, ends complicity and commitment, meddles in intimacy, brings suffering, and is a betrayal of trust. So, when a person cheats, it’s normal for their significant other to be incapable of forgiving infidelity.
Indeed, having broken the foundations of a relationship, it’s logical to consider whether it’s worth continuing it or not. It’s often better to put an end to it and today’s article will provide you with five examples of when it’s best to do so.
There are many reasons why a person might be unfaithful. However, the result is often the same: cheating makes a huge dent in a relationship. This is because infidelity is a form of betrayal, almost an “attack” against the foundations of commitment and mutual trust.
So, a deceived person often finds themselves in a dilemma of whether or not they should forgive the offense and try to maintain the relationship. They don’t realize they’re not under any obligation to continue it after infidelity. It’s up to them to make an important decision after weighing the pros and cons of both options. It’s perfectly legitimate to say “it’s over.”
Oftentimes, a person who’s been unfaithful asks for forgiveness and pretends to continue it as if nothing ever happened. However, some things can’t be repaired. Trust is gone. As per historian Nicolae Lorga’s words, “you can only lose someone’s trust once.”
As you can see, there are many reasons to end a relationship after infidelity. Here are five of them.
Sexually transmitted diseases
Promiscuity and sex without protection can be really dangerous. Indeed, many sexually transmitted diseases such as syphilis, gonorrhea, HIV, or genital herpes can easily spread from one person to another.
Thus, you must take into account that a person who’s been unfaithful hasn’t only betrayed you emotionally but also hasn’t taken into account your health and personal integrity. That is, their immaturity has been greater than their need to care for and protect the other person with whom they have a commitment.
Also, if you’re not sure your partner is going to change and you think they’ll continue to have affairs in the future, then you must keep the following in mind: your health is the most important thing.
We recommend you read: Should You Save Your Relationship by Ignoring Infidelity?
Forgiving infidelity when it’s a wound to a person’s self-esteem
Many people tend to blame themselves when their significant other cheats. Similarly, some people try to make their partners responsible for their unfaithfulness by telling them things such as “our sex life is not the same as it was, we’ve fallen into a routine,” etc.
In any case, blaming others for our actions is a form of manipulation and a way to not have to assume the consequences of a selfish personal choice. Nobody is at fault for their partner’s unfaithful behavior.
Another consequence of infidelity is that it’s a blow to the deceived person’s self-esteem. This is why they often feel guilty about it. So, keep in mind that forgiving infidelity means having to live with that wound, recover from it, and learn to see things clearly.
The wound may wake you up and you’ll be able to understand the pain isn’t worth it. You’ll only feel undervalued when it’s in fact your partner’s selfishness and immaturity that are to blame. Thus, if you feel guilty about their actions, then it’s better to put an end to the relationship and give yourself some time to process it.
Trust is broken after infidelity
We already mentioned that trust is one of the fundamental pillars of a relationship. Infidelity breaks and destroys it, undermining what you built over time with dedication and effort. You may not be aware of it but relationships don’t just happen out of the blue, you build them.
In this respect, infidelity is about contempt for everything you’ve built together for so long. Cheaters don’t take it into account as apparently it wasn’t important enough not to lose it due to a momentary whim.
So, how can you trust a person who’s let you down by being unfaithful? Trust is difficult to regain once it’s lost. Infidelity will always be a lurking shadow.
We recommend you read: Is Infidelity Different for Men and Women?
Forgive, but never forget
As you know, it’s one thing to forgive and quite another one to forget. Furthermore, events as painful as infidelity can rarely be erased from one’s memory. This is precisely one of the reasons why regaining confidence is so complicated.
Keep in mind you’ll never be able to forget infidelity. It’ll always be in the back of your mind and arise, along with the discomfort, pain, injury, and anger you felt when you found out. You know that the relationship will never be the same.
It’s possible to overcome infidelity from a rational point of view. However, things are more complicated from an emotional point of view.
Forgiving infidelity in repeat offenders is nearly impossible
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Felson, RJ, Scheff, TJ y Retzinger, SM (1993). Emociones y violencia: vergüenza y rabia en conflictos destructivos . Psicología social trimestral (Vol. 56, p. 305). iUniverse. https://doi.org/10.2307/2786667
- Rizo, D. (2018). ¿Qué dice la psicología sobre la infidelidad? Retrieved May 13, 2019, from https://lamenteesmaravillosa.com/que-dice-la-psicologia-sobre-la-infidelidad/
Canto Ortiz, J. M., García Leiva, P., & Gómez Jacinto, L. (2009). Celos y emociones: Factores de la relación de pareja en la reacción ante la infidelidad. Athenea digital: revista de pensamiento e investigación social, (15), 039-55.
Cox, T. (2000). Hot relationships: how to have one. Random House.