I Refused To Be A Victim Of Infidelity: 6 Tips For Moving On

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By Fabulous at Fifty , Featured Columnist - June 30, 2015

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Your hubs had an affair now you are alone in the big single world. Here are some tips from my own experience to help you move on from this life changing event.  

If you have read my past stories you know my ex decided to end our marriage in October 2013. He at first denied the fact he was having an affair with his co-worker who was also married. I knew the signs, I had seen them with a previous affair he had. I also saw them with my own father when he cheated on my mom.

Breaking down in a four-hour car ride home from the airport the day he said we were done, and him being totally distant when he said "we are done" was so cold to me.  

Now that I look back I wish I could have a do-over. I wish I had the strength of the person he met in 2000 and that had come out instead of the blubbering baby I became in the car that day.  

I had to wake up, I had to breathe, I had to exist. I had a life, a job, kids, grandkids, a dog and many friends. I could not crawl under a rock like I really wanted to do. 

I just kept hearing over and over in my head the words that spewed out of his mouth as we were splitting, going back to the day I found the texts on his phone and I buried him in his web of lies and deceit.

I cheated on him after his first affair with my ex's fiancé, so I had a lot of guilt, even though I was not happy with him.  

Yet I had to come to a point in our marriage where I thought we were beyond the past.  

We moved to South Carolina from Ohio for a reason - to leave the past behind. That's exactly what I did.  

But sometime between 2009 when we moved and October 2013 there was a disconnect with my ex. He failed to tell me how he felt and I was alone and confused.

Not so much anymore.

Here are 5 tips for healing from infidelity and beginning to move on with your life.

1. Allow yourself time to heal. Everyone needs "me time" and you want to be able to cry, scream, and throw things. This is not going to happen overnight. Don't let anyone tell you how long it should take. You are your own person. You will know when you are healed. I still think about the love we had and the things we did as a couple from time to time. I fight the tears as I still wonder what the hell happened. That is totally normal!

2. Write down your feelings. For goodness' sake, don't send emails to them! I can tell you I did this. They don't care so it is a total waste of time. I never got a response. My thought was that I have laid out my feelings so he has to show some emotion. Good luck with that because they don't. Mine made his decision and he was not going to budge. His choice was not me and I had to learn to accept that. Tons of anger, sad, hopeless emails later, of course, I realized and accepted I didn't need or want him in my life.  

3. It's OK to seek out help with therapy or a divorce group. I went to a couple of therapy sessions after the split. Mostly to get my head where it needed to be. The therapist was a man and he was very good and understanding. He explained my ex was a classic narcissist and the more we read about talked about it, I realized my therapist was right. I felt stupid for not seeing the signs before. But he swept me off my feet when we met like narcissists do. We had to split legally for a year due to our state laws. I hated that law at first but then realized it helped me take the time I needed to heal. I did a lot of research online and found a Facebook group for divorce. I met a wonderful lady named Jennifer (what a coincidence she holds the same name as my ex's mistress, yet this one has a conscience!) She and I have never met but you wouldn't know that. We message each other when we feel down or just need to talk. 

4.  Don't hibernate inside the walls of your house. It's safe, no one bothers you, and you can't get hurt. This is bullshit and you know it. Sitting alone with four walls surrounding you for long periods of time is boring and can make you think more than you need. It's OK to go out with friends. You are not scoping out the next male to be your partner, you are going out and being social.  

5. Forgive. This is probably the most important thing you need to do. If you don't forgive your ex you will never heal. You will always be looking for the same traits in another male and that's not fair to them. I will NEVER forgive the homewrecker he was with. I don't have to. I cut the ties with my ex, even when he mentioned we could remain friends. I took control back for me. I don't want to see him, hear his voice or have him in my life. Yes, I miss him. Yes, a part of me still loves him. And, yes, I wonder what he is doing from time to time. Healing takes time and I can't do that with him in my life.  

6. I am a total believer in KARMA. He told me I had lost it looks and weight-wise. I am a part-time print model. His mistress is a very large girl. I didn't lose it. He had to think of excuses to make up for his bad decision. I saw a pic of him last week. He looks horrible and she is still married and working for him. My looks are not what drives me, yet that is what drives him and he settled for her.  

I love this quote from Nicholas Sparks, “The emotion that can break your heart is sometimes the very one that heals it...” This is so true. 

After all I have been through I still question myself. Am I really ready to get out there and be available for someone else? I had to just come to the conclusion time will heal. If that person is out there I am here. I know I won't whine about my last marriage. That is not fair to them. I will try and trust them. But I will be more aware of what signs to look for. I have been going out, laughing, sailing, and taking mini-vacations. I am living with no regrets. Don't settle. Demand only the best for yourself. You are worth more than that.

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photo credit: Irma 4 via photopin (license)

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