Many of the women who find my blog are wives who are dealing with the aftermath of their husband's affair. Many tell me that although their husband swears the affair is over and he is fully committed to saving the marriage, they are just not sure that this is really true. They aren't sure if their husband is really, completely and totally over the affair once and for all (this seems especially common with emotional affairs). To make this even worse, most wives whose husbands have cheated have lost a good deal of trust and faith, so when their husbands are telling them, “I promise that the affair is completely and totally over, " and is doing everything in his power to prove that this is true, they don't believe it for a second, even if it potentially could be completely factual. So, in this article, I'll tell you some signs that can indicate that your husband really is over the affair. If you aren't seeing these signs, this doesn't mean that he isn't over it, but it certainly wouldn't hurt for you to ask him to give you what you need to move on.
He's Willing To Be Accountable And Hand Over Cell Phone Records, Credit Card Receipts, And Is Available To Provide Reassurance: Husbands who are really over the affair and have nothing to hide will usually have no problem handing over their cell phone records, credit card bills or receipts, and make their whereabouts available to you to show you that in fact nothing is amiss. No one likes an invasion of privacy of course and even the most honest husband may not like having to check in constantly, but husbands who are committed to saving the marriage are usually willing to do this.
Now, obviously this can't go on forever. Eventually, when your husband has proven himself trustworthy over a reasonable amount of time, you'll have to back off a bit. But, your husband should accept that this will need to go on for “as long as it takes" until you are comfortable. A truly remorseful husband committed to saving his marriage is usually willing to go along if he understands that you are just seeking reassurance and aren't doing this to punish him.
He's Willing To Hear And Accept Your Feelings And Has Patience As They Change: I used to have a friend who would say “a cheating husband who suffers no consequences will be a repeat offender. " This is probably a little harsh, but your husband needs to know the pain that this affair has caused you. Many women will hold back on expressing their true feelings because they fear the marriage is already on shaky ground and their husband is already distant so they don't want to make this whole thing worse. However, this will often backfire. If you don't feel heard, your anger and resentment will fester and present themselves in unfortunate ways that will keep you from healing and reconnecting with your husband.
It's so important that you let your feelings out and you make him aware of how you feel. You don't need to be punishing about this, but you do need to be honest. You need to express and release these feelings before you can heal. And, you need to be aware that it's perfectly normal for your feelings to change. One day, you may feel that you have made a lot of progress and may feel receptive to your husband again. And then, the next day you will regress and feel angry even though your husband did nothing to bring this on. This is normal.
Healing isn't linear. You will take a few steps forward and then a few back. It's important that your husband is patient with this. It helps to just be honest and tell him that although you are trying your best, you're having conflicting feelings and you're asking for his understand.
He's Willing To Change His Lifestyle Or Make The Necessary Changes To Ensure The Cheating Won't Happen Again: Sometimes, drastic changes are necessary to affair proof a marriage. If an affair happened at work, your husband may need to change jobs or departments. If you are in contact with this woman all the time, moving may be necessary. I know this sounds harsh, but it's impossible to really heal if you are confronted with this every day.
It's very important to pinpoint the lifestyle issues that left the marriage vulnerable and change them. I know one couple who suffered infidelity when the husband went out drinking with friends and another who had an issue about the husband taking overnight business trips. Obviously, both of these practices needed to stop immediately.
Sometimes, the issues that need to change are emotional ones - where one or both parties are distancing themselves or not going “all in" to the marriage for whatever reason. Sometimes, there are intimacy issues to over come. What ever your unique issue is, you should both be willing to name it, claim it, and fix it, so that you are both sure that it will never happen again and you can not only heal your marriage, but evolve it into one that thrives and is better than it has been in quite a long time.
Although I never would've believed this two years ago, my marriage is stronger than ever after my husband's affair. It took a lot of work, and I had to play the game to win, but it was worth it. Because of all the work I did on myself, my self esteem is at an all time high. I know longer worry my husband will cheat again. You can read my very personal story on my blog at http://surviving-the-affair.com/