My Spouse Is Not Interested In Me After The Affair

By: Katie Lersch: I sometimes hear from people who deeply regret that their relationship with their spouse has changed after one spouse has cheated and had an affair. Often, they feel sure that their spouse no longer has a romantic interest in them. And this can happen with either the cheating spouse or the faithful spouse.

To keep this article from getting too confusing, I will discuss one scenario at a time. For the cheating spouse, a common comment would be something like: “I deeply regret cheating on my wife. I have repeatedly apologized and offered my wife anything that she wants in order to give me one more chance. I will treat her like a queen. I will go to counseling. I will never take her for granted again. I will do everything in my power to never make her regret not giving up on me. I will be the best husband she can ask for.  But none of this matters to her.  She is not even remotely interested in me right now. She says that I am like a stranger and that I am no longer the person she thought I was. She said therefore she can’t love me and she doesn’t want to waste her time on a lost cause. Is there anything that I can do to make her interested in me again?

Patience And Sincerity Are Your Best Hope: Successful strategies for regaining a spouse’s interest is going to be different depending upon whether you are the cheating spouse or the faithful spouse. If you were the one who cheated, then you need to accept that your spouse is going to need some time. In the beginning, the anger often overshadows everything else. Often, they are not interested in you because it is very painful to show any emotion whatsoever toward you. So they will retreat into themselves because it feels safer that way.

Sometimes, with time, their anger will fade and they will become a bit more receptive to you, especially if you show yourself to be sincere and are making every effort to make this right again. You want for your spouse to know that you are willing to have patience for as long as it takes because your greatest desire is for them to heal. That is your first priority. Only after they have healed should you worry about being given one more chance. It needs to be very clear to your spouse that their well being is your first concern while being given another chance comes after your concern for them.

You don’t want to try to use reverse psychology or try to make them feel guilty or at fault. You don’t want to pull away in the hopes that this will spark their interest. In short, you don’t want to play games with them because you have already put them through enough. You want to be there for them. You want to have patience as they heal. And you want to make supporting them your highest priority, even if you need patience in order to make this happen. Once your spouse sees that you are sincere, then they will sometimes begin to show some interest as the trust starts to return.

Disinterest When You’re The Faithful Spouse: From the faithful spouse, you might hear something like: “my husband cheated on me with a woman who is nothing like me. She seems to have him under some spell. He agreed to try to work on our marriage because of our kids. But nothing that I do excites him. I will try to get dressed up to look nice. I will try to plan a nice evening for us with things that I know he used to enjoy. None of it matters. His head and his heart are always somewhere else. I know that he is thinking of her. No matter what I do, he isn’t interested in me. Short of making a huge fool of myself, what can I do to get his attention?”

I know that this hurts. And it is not fair. Because your husband isn’t thinking clearly right now. And at some point in the future, he is likely going to realize just how silly he is being. But that doesn’t help when you feel rejected because of his lack of interest.

As bad as this feels though, I have to tell you that trying harder to get his interest will often not only fail, but it will be hurtful to you because it will likely lower your already wounded self esteem. When a man isn’t thinking clearly because of an affair, it is usually best to make it clear that infidelity is never going to be acceptable to you and then wait and see how he is going to proceed. If you repeatedly go out of your way to make him interested, then you are almost implying that there is something wrong with you when their most definitely is not and when the real problem lies with him.

It is my opinion (and many people who comment on my blog agree) that when you retreat a little and then go about your business and make yourself a priority, suddenly you may find that he becomes interested. Because he looks around and sees that you are no longer hanging onto only what he wants. You are more concerned about what you want and this is actually more attractive.

But to answer the concerns posed, both situations need to be handled with patience and with putting an emphasis on healing.. Often if you do that, the interest will come. But it’s best not to try too hard and not to apply pressure that pushes your partner away. Conduct yourself with dignity, self respect, and kindness and you will often find that the interest returns as the healing begins.

I will admit that my interest in my husband waned after his affair.  I didn’t really have the emotional energy to deal with him. But, he was patient and loving while he waited to see if I wanted to move forward.  And he made it clear that his biggest concern was me.  This mattered quite a bit and it helped lead to our healing.  If it helps, you can read more on my blog

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