What Can I Say To My Husband To Make Him Love Me Again After His Infidelity?

By: Katie Lersch: I sometimes hear from wives who almost can’t believe that they are admitting that they are seeking a way to return their spouse’s love after he cheated. Deep down, they know that it should be the other way around. They know that he should be trying to earn their love back. But, for whatever reason, these faithful wives doubt their husband’s love for them. They feel that the infidelity stole something from their relationship that might never return.

I might hear a comment like: “ever since I caught my husband cheating on me, he’s been cold, distant, and bordering on mean and cruel. Our marriage was struggling for the year before the affair because I had some medical issues that caused stress, financial hardship, and a lack of intimacy. However, even despite this, I still felt that deep down my husband still loved me. I hoped that as things improved in our lives, our marriage would get back on track too. That all changed when the other woman came into our lives. Even when my marriage was struggling, my husband was always respectful, complimentary, and kind to me. But, once the other woman came along, this all changed. Now, it seems that I can’t do anything right. My husband is not downright critical of me and he’s extremely frigid toward me. There are days when I almost feel that there is hatred that he feels toward me. It’s pretty clear to me that he doesn’t love me anymore. I feel like he compares me to the other woman and I come up short. I feel like he thinks that he can never be happy with me now because now he knows what is possible with the other woman. I have tried to reach him physically but he always backs away from me and creates distance between us. So, I want to know what I can say to him verbally to make him love me again? How can I make him see that the other woman is not who he thinks she is? How can I make him know that it is our marriage that is important here? And that he’s just a few steps away from throwing it all away? What words can I say to talk some sense into him?”

I know that this is a difficult and frustrating situation. And, I’m about to tell you something that may not make you happy at first. The good news is that once you process the total of this message, it will likely help you to formulate a better and more effective plan. I’m not telling you this to discourage you. I’m telling you because I want to help.

I know first hand that it is tempting to try to get him to listen to you right now. You want to tell him all of the things that seem so obvious to you and yet somehow he seems to keep missing the obvious. You think that if you can get him to listen for long enough to hear you out, then he will finally see the truth, and he may even be grateful to you for that knowledge eventually.

Turning Away From What Is Tempting But Less Likely To Be Effective: It would be wonderful for it to work this way. But it rarely does. It helps to accept that he is likely not thinking clearly and rationally right now, as evidenced by the affair. So trying to appeal to him rationally is often an attempt that has a low chance of success. Often, he will just tune you out and he will become even more determined to prove you wrong. In short, he will actually look to build the other woman up as you try to tear her down. This accomplishes the opposite of what you set out to do.

I know that it’s very tempting to tell him how stupid he is being and how he obviously isn’t thinking clearly. You might be tempted to point out how selfish and short sighted he is to betray you for someone who he doesn’t even really know. But let’s think about that strategy for a second. Is it really logical to think that he might suddenly say: “thank you so much for helping me see the light. I hadn’t thought of that before. You’re right. What an idiot I’ve been.”

As wonderful as those words would be to hear, very few men are going to speak them. Instead, they come to these realizations by themselves. But in their own time. And in their own way (and their own way usually allows them to keep their dignity.) Some better phrases to try might be something like: “it really hurts me to see the marriage that we’ve worked so hard for threatened. I know that we are both going through things right now that challenge our vision of the marriage that we thought we had, but I’m hoping that we will both try to keep the right perspective and not make any abrupt or unfortunate decisions. Emotions are running high and it would be very easy for both of us to just walk away. But I don’t plan to do that because it would be a mistake. We’ve put in too much time, effort, and commitment to not give our marriage a fair chance. I am committed to doing that. I know that it won’t always be easy and I know that there is a lot of work to do, especially when our feelings may not be completely clear. But I’m willing to try. And I’m willing to hang in there even when the future isn’t already set. I hope that you are too.”

It May Take More Than Words To Get The Desired Result: Please know that words alone aren’t usually enough – especially after something as serious as an affair. Words can make your intentions clear and provide clarity and reassurance. But usually, both people are waiting for the reassurance that only time can bring. So yes, it doesn’t hurt to say the words. But always try to follow the words with real, concrete action. And after an affair, it is typically a long string of actions that we are talking about. And frankly, since it was the husband that had cheated, he needed to take some initiative with the actions as well. Honestly, it really shouldn’t be up to you to make this up to him. It should be the other way around. As the spouse who cheated, he should also be taking the initiative.

And know that you are lovable and worthy of anyone’s love.  When you believe this deep in your core, it is easier for him to believe it too.  This was a lesson that took me a while to learn.  But once I did, it made all of the difference in my healing.  If it helps, you can read more on my blog at http://surviving-the-affair.com

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