Under What Circumstances Should I Take Back My Cheating Husband?

By: Katie Lersch: I sometimes hear from wives who are keeping their husband at arm’s length because he has cheated or had an affair. Some husbands don’t accept this type of distance however. They will beg their wives to take them back.

To that end, a husband will often act in such a way to begin to attempt to restore the trust and to get his wife to be receptive to him again. Many wives will resist this very much at first. But over time, her defenses begin to wear down. I can tell you from experience that your love for your husband doesn’t dissipate into a puff of smoke because of one mistake. Often, somewhere in your heart, you do have an inclination to take him back, at least some day. But you can be afraid that he is going to hurt you again. So you start to ask yourself if there are any circumstances in which you should allow him back into your life and back into your marriage.

I hear these types of comments in this situation: “my husband cheated on me with one of my friends. My first inclination was to want nothing to do with either one of them. The thought of them together makes me absolutely sick. I kicked my husband out of the house and told him that if he thought so highly of my friend, he should go and live with her. I turned off my cell phone so that neither of them had access to me and I did not answer the door when they came by. Last week, I went out to get my mail. My husband had his car parked down the street and then approached me and begged for me to hear him out. Then he started crying and blubbering and saying that he couldn’t live without me. He begged for me to let him come inside so I did. He talked for two hours about how if I would take him back he would spend the rest of his life being the best husband imaginable. He seemed sincere. He cried several times. Part of me is tempted to take him back but I know that would probably be a stupid decision. Under what circumstances should a wife take back her cheating husband?”

This is a difficult question because only the person involved in it can evaluate what might be right for them and for their own marriage. However, with this said, I can tell you my opinion on this as a wife who has been through it. And I can tell you some of the characteristics that I often see in men who are sincere and determined to really and truly save their marriage.

He Takes Full Responsibility And Offers No Excuses Or Blame: You want to see a man who doesn’t try to shift the blame or offer up lame excuses. You want to see him stand up and proclaim that this is all his fault and that there is no possible justification for his actions. You want for him to realize that fixing this lies on his shoulders because he is the one who put all of this in motion. In short, he knows that full responsibility lies with him. Because if he doesn’t take this stance, there is a decent chance that there is going to be resentment as a result.

He Is Willing To Do Whatever You Deem Necessary For Healing To Occur: Men who are worthy of taking back don’t refuse to go to counseling and don’t refuse to answer your questions about the affair. Even if the process is painful or uncomfortable to them, they are willing to do whatever you feel that you need to heal because they want what is best for you and not what is best for them. Admittedly, most men are not going to be excited about counseling or self help. But the motivated man who wants to save his marriage will agree to it because his wife is more important than his own comfort level.

He Will Do Whatever You Need Him To Do In Order To Get Reassurance That This Isn’t Going To Happen Again: It is normal for a wife who has been through infidelity to be suspicious of her husband and to have trust issues. It is normal for her to want to know where he is at all times for a little while. It’s normal for you to want him home and to want for him to check in. It’s normal for her to need a little more reassurance for quite a while. A man who is worth taking back will do all of this quite willingly and he won’t make his wife feel guilty or paranoid about it. He will just see the whole process as the understandable cost of his huge mistake.

He Is Willing To Go At Your Own Pace And Not To Rush You: There’s no question that this husband wanted his wife back. But frankly what was important right now was what the wife wanted and what was right for her. Personally, I think that it was too soon to make a real decision about taking him back. But I don’t think there’s anything with telling him that you will wait and see and that you won’t make any rash decisions. There isn’t anything wrong with continuing to talk and see one another as you feel it is appropriate. There’s nothing wrong with giving your husband a chance to make it up to you if this is what you want to do. And during that process, you can evaluate what type of progress you are making with healing and how you feel at that time.

But, there is no need to rush. You can commit to being somewhat receptive to listening to him in the days ahead if you like. But whether or not you should ultimately take him back, at least in my opinion, should come after you’ve watched and waited for a while in order to determine if he’s really sincere and if he has really making good on his promises.

I did ultimately decide to take my husband back after his affair.  But I took my time about this.  I felt that it was necessary to watch, wait and evaluate for quite a while and I’m glad that I did.  Because the slower pace gave me the peace of mind that he was really sincere. You can read more on my blog at http://surviving-the-affair.com

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