How Do I Make My Husband See How It Feels To Be Cheated On Without Actually Cheating On Him?

By: Katie Lersch: I often hear from wives who tell me that they would give anything for their husband to feel the pain that his cheating has forced upon them. They often feel as if he really has no idea of the pain that they are in, nor does he have any clue as to how they really feel.

I recently heard from a wife who said: “in the first couple of weeks after my husband’s affair, he seemed genuinely sorry and empathetic to me. But after a couple of weeks, he seemed to lose his patience. It was almost as if he were trying to hint to me that my time to grieve was up. He said he couldn’t understand why I insisted on continuing to dwell on my pain. He wondered aloud why I didn’t seem to want to move forward. What he doesn’t seem to get is that I do want to move forward but I can’t seem to. He has no idea what it’s like to wonder if your spouse still desires you or why he has to go to someone else to get what he should be getting and wanting from his wife. He has no idea what it’s like to feel insecure about something that is not your fault. He doesn’t know what it’s like to both love and hate your spouse at the same time. I want him to feel that same insecurity, pain and desperation. Because I feel like if he knew how this feels, he might empathize with me more, be more sincerely sorry, and have more patience and sympathy. But the only way to do that is to cheat on him myself and then to tell him about it. I could never ever do that. I don’t have it in me to cheat and I find that idea repulsive. So how can I make him understand how this feels and encourage him to feel my pain?”

These are valid but difficult questions. For obvious reasons, I would never advise someone to cheat to get back at their spouse or yo show their spouse how the cheating feels. I have never seen this work out well, although I’ve seen plenty of people try this strategy. This often just creates many more problems than it solves. I believe that there are better ways to get your husband to feel empathy and remorse. I will discuss them below.

Although Your Husband Should Know That You Would Never Cheat On Him, There Is Nothing Wrong With Creating A Little Mystery: At the end of the day, what you really want (at least in part) is for your husband to understand how lucky he is to have you. You’d like for him to know that although he was stupid enough to not see your value, there are countless other men who might see you differently, if given the chance. You want him to know that you are attractive to other people and that if he is not faithful to you, then you are more than capable of finding someone who will be.

There are ways to accomplish this instead of cheating. Make any necessary changes to your appearance that will make you feel as confident as you possibly can be. Hang out with people who make you feel good about yourself. Go out with your friends. Get yourself out there. You don’t want to paint yourself as a woman who can only stay at home and suffer. As unfair as it is, this can make you appear less attractive to him. But you are likely to appear more attractive (without cheating) when you pick yourself up and carry on to the best of your ability. And if you don’t actually feel it, make sure that it looks convincing, at least for his benefit.

In a sense, this keeps him guessing a little bit and keeps him on his toes. If you aren’t sure what tomorrow holds for you, then you don’t have to pretend for his benefit. Let him know what you’re going to need from him in order to begin to regain the trust. It doesn’t always need to be so easy for him and so hard from you.

I’m not saying that you want to constantly play games. I believe it should be clear that two wrongs don’t make a right and that you do not intend to cheat. But there’s nothing wrong with making him wonder from time to time. Because sometimes if you can, he will be more invested in making things up to you and regaining your trust.

Knowing That He Won’t Cheat On You Again: To be quite honest, one of the most persuasive reasons that wives want their husbands to know how being cheated on feels is because they hope that he will feel so guilty that he will never cheat again. The real hope is that all of this will make him forever faithful because he will see that the price of your pain is just too high.

But by taking this strategy, you are only covering one facet of cheating. And in order to have the greatest chance that he won’t cheat again, you need to cover all of this basis. You need to understand what characteristic in him contributed to the cheating. You need to understand what made your marriage vulnerable. And you need to learn how to recognize the signs so that you can place needed safe guards in place.

It’s not so easy as just making him feel insecure and sorry so that he resists the next time. You want him to understand every aspect of the process so that he will not only resist, he will understand why the temptation exists. And you want for your marriage to feel so safe and fulfilling that he can come to you with small issues before they become large issues. Just making him understand how you feel or forcing him to feel your pain is often not going to be enough as men and women experience things (especially feelings) quite differently.

I completely understand why you want to make your husband feel the pain that you feel. But often the better and more long term strategy is attempting to make both of you feel better whether than worse. The key is to build yourself up rather than tearing yourself down. Once I understood this, it was much easier to save my marriage after his affair. If you’d like to read about how accomplished this, feel free to visit my blog at

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