Tips for Mitigating Mistrust and Healing After Infidelity

Updated 05/13/19
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Your husband had an affair. He says it is over and the two of you have decided, together, to put the marriage back together and work at rebuilding trust. For this to happen he will need to break-off all contact with the other woman. He will need to prove to you that his affair is over.

Since you’ve lost trust in him, you may not have faith that he will actually follow through. For that reason, here is a list of things you can request he do to prove that he has broken-off contact with the other woman and doesn’t intend to see her again. 

5 Ways to Gain Peace of Mind

  1. Tell him you want access to his phone, email accounts and social media accounts. That would mean him sharing his passwords with you and you being able to check those accounts at your will. 
  2. Ask him to email her, in your presence, and tell her that the relationship is over. He needs to be specific about the fact that there will be no further contact via text, phone, and email or in person. Once that is done, monitor his email account for any response from her. If she responds it is within your right to reply and let her know that she can no longer interfere in your marriage. 
  3. Watch him as he deletes her number from his phone and her address from his email account. You will also want him to remove her from any social media connections. When possible on email and social media insist that he block her from being able to contact him.
  4. For added protection you can insist he change his email address and his phone number. Make sure that his old email account is deleted and that you have access to his new account. Once he has a new phone number check your account with your cellphone provider for her number to make sure the other woman doesn’t have access to the new number and communication is continuing. 
  5. If he and the other woman work together tell him that you want proof that they have limited contact at work. If that entails him exposing the affair to his boss, so be it. If he was concerned about his reputation at work he wouldn’t have started an affair.

This may be tough on your husband. It will take time and likely a few chances for him to get it right, but that does not mean that you should be gentle. It is important to be firm with these guidelines so that he knows that you are serious and will not allow for any more dishonesty. 

If your marriage is going to survive his infidelity the goal has to be to heal the wound to the marriage. You can’t begin to heal that wound until the other woman is totally out of the picture. Don’t be surprised if he finds it hard to cut her off completely. It may take a few stops and starts for him to be able to break away cleanly. 

4 Ways to Know the Affair Is Really Over

  1. He willingly engages in honest discourse about the affair and what needs to be done to restore the marriage.
  2. He doesn't dismiss your feelings about the affair and your need to talk about those feelings. By being willing to listen and validate your feelings, he is taking responsibility for his hurtful behavior. 
  3. The two of you have identified issues in your marriage that need to be fixed and are actively working, together, to make those changes. 
  4. You are both focusing on what makes the other happy.

Rebuilding trust after an affair takes time. It comes one step at a time. Be patient with yourself and him. You will be able to tell in your gut whether or not you are both on the same page when it comes to saving the marriage. 

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