How to Decide if you Should Stay with a Cheating Husband

Infidelity is one of the most painful things you can experience in a relationship. If your husband is cheating on you, it can be especially bad because of the fact that you made a lifetime commitment through marriage. If you have been cheated on, one of the clear questions you need to ask is whether you should stay with your husband. The answer can depend on a lot of factors, however, and every marriage has its own unique circumstances. Here are a few things to consider when you are evaluating whether your marriage is fixable or if it's time to find a better situation:

Is there a Pattern?
The first question with cheating is whether this is a one-time mistake or if this is a regular occurrence. The more frequent the cheating events are, both in number of times and number of people, the more unlikely it is that your husband will change without a large shift in priority or environment.

Is he Willing to Make Amends?
Another important question to ask is whether your husband is willing to do what it takes to make amends. This should not be about letting you pay him back for hurting you, but instead it should be about making positive steps toward a better life. Things that would be included in this are attending therapy sessions and making positive changes from preventing this from happening again.

Have you Examined the Reasons Behind the Infidelity?
One thing that people say about cheating is that it's more about the couple than the mistress or mister. Cheating is usually a sign that someone is not getting something they need from the relationship. It's possible in cases of mental illness and addiction that they are incapable in their current state of being faithful. However, in other cases, it may be problems within the marriage that causes a person to seek happiness elsewhere. It's important to acknowledge that even in cases of cheating, a bad relationship is often the result of two people making bad choices, and not just one person. Find your place in the equation. Change what you can, and try and actively make things better from your end as a part of your decision. Not because it was your fault that he cheated, but because making a better relationship is a responsibility for both of you.

Make a Pro-Con List
What reasons are there to stay, and what reasons are there to leave? Make a list, and try and be objective. Also, keep track of the days that you are happy, and the days that you are miserable in the relationship. Seek therapy if needed to try and make yourself happy independent of him. Then take an honest look at what your marriage does to enhance your life, versus detract from it. The answer may be clear, though likely not easy.

Cite this page: N., Pam M.S., "How to Decide if you Should Stay with a Cheating Husband," in PsychologyDictionary.org, January 25, 2016, https://psychologydictionary.org/article/how-to-decide-if-you-should-stay-with-a-cheating-husband/ (accessed September 10, 2019).
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