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Is divorce the only answer when one person cheats?

When one person in the relationship cheats, sexts, watches porn, plays away, commits adultery, it doesn’t have to mean the end of the relationship. Those actions, whilst not acceptable in a committed relationship are not usually the cause of things going wrong – it's much more likely to be a symptom that the relationship is being neglected.

Tell the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth

When the indiscretion comes to light – be honest! So many people do not – they are economical with the truth, either because they feel ashamed, they want to ‘save’ the feelings of their partner, or believe they won't get found out, so they go for damage limitation. The problem is that when you lie, it's unlikely you will be able to remember what you have said.

Trust has been broken by cheating, and lying about what happened will only add to the lack of trust. Of course your partner will be angry and hurt, but nothing to who they will feel when they discover you haven’t been truthful.

You are likely to have left some evidence of events behind you.

These can include:

  • visa hotel/bar/gift receipts
  • emails
  • phone/mobile bills
  • people you have confided in, or have seen you
  • website history.

You may think you have covered your tracks, but there are ways of checking a lot of this information, and once your partner starts checking this out, they will become more and more suspicious as they find out things you haven’t owned up to.

Once you both face the truth, it really doesn’t have to be the end of the relationship

It is possible to rebuild a relationship, and it can be done if you really want to. Spend some time thinking about the repercussions of ending the relationship, and divorce is a very emotional and distressing thing to go through. It is also extremely expensive!  

Let’s face it, if you are both happy in the relationship, totally committed to it, you have good communication, and you really care about each other, you or your partner are not likely to look outside of the relationship to feel happy. You wouldn’t risk losing a good relationship!

So start looking at the reasons the relationship has been neglected, and take responsibility your part in it. Then you can start rebuilding it. Start by talking to each other.

If you find it hard to do that without emotions running high

Consider working with a specialist relationship counsellor. It can really help to be able to say what you really feel in a safe and contained environment.

Counselling Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

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Written by Wendy Capewell - Trauma and Relationship Specialist

Wendy Capewell is an experienced integrative counsellor who specialises in working with those struggling in their relationships, either with individuals or couples. She has her own successful private practice in Hampshire.

By working with Wendy, clients find long lasting results. They have better understanding of each other and communicate better.… Read more

Written by Wendy Capewell - Trauma and Relationship Specialist

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