Okay, it’s hard for us not to be sucked into the repeated cheating/make-up sagas of celebrities like Beyonce and Jay Z—especially since we spend our time helping people keep the spark alive in their relationships.
There’s plenty of evidence all around that the old saying “Once a cheater, always a cheater” is true. Most everyone has at least one story about cheating and maybe even being cheated on multiple times by the same partner.
The problem comes down to even though you may love your partner and want to make it work, how do you really know whether you’re going to get burned again or not if it happened once.
Here are 4 smart ways to regain trust after cheating from our Relationship Trust Turnaround program…
1. Gauge your level of desire to regain trust and your partner’s level of desire to stop being a cheater and become trustable
Here’s what we’ve found in helping couples to rebuild trust and create a close, connected relationship after cheating—the desire has to be there for both people to buy in to doing it.
If the desire isn’t there, it just won’t happen.
Sure, two people can live together and even raise a family together after cheating if the desire to create a trusting, loving relationship isn’t there, but if you really want true happiness, you both have to have the desire to do the things that will create it.
2. Make sure you have a plan to regain trust
Don’t just make up and take your partner back, pretending all is well and nothing happened and hoping for the best. If you don’t have a plan for rebuilding trust and both of you making changes, nothing will change and the chances of cheating happening again greatly increase.
Trust is not built in one fell swoop but rather moment by moment.
3. Without taking on blame, look at yourself and what you could have done better in the relationship
In saying this, we’re certainly not letting your partner who cheated off the hook or condoning what was done. And we’re certainly not suggesting that you blame yourself for what happened.
But unless you look at what you can change—as well as how your partner can change, nothing will change.
It might be something as simple as being wrapped up in your career and allowing your relationship to be on auto-pilot. Maybe your partner did this as well and if so, this gives you a place to start rebuilding trust.
But you can’t know where you are unless you create a plan for getting where you want to go—and following it.
4. Watch for trustable moments and acknowledge them
When we say "moments," we mean one moment in time that you feel a connection.
While it's good to have an overall goal of how you want your relationship to be, when you're trying to start over and rebuild a trusting relationship, start with one moment at a time.
If you constantly make your partner pay for what he or she did and you don’t acknowledge changes that are happening for the better, you’ll kill any chance for building a close, connected, trusting and loving relationship.
Be smart about it and don’t turn a blind eye on what’s actually happen—but stay open to looking for what you want your relationship to be also.
Building trust after cheating takes a lot of courage and desire on the part of both people to make it work.
“Once a cheater, always a cheater” doesn’t have to be true in your relationship if you’re smart about staying open to rebuilding trust.
You can create a growing, loving, vibrant relationship that’s filled with trust after there’s been cheating—if you’re both willing to make some shifts in your attitudes and actions that bring you closer together instead of pushing each other away.