How long does a marriage last after infidelity? Being in a marriage after infidelity is both heartbreaking and infuriating.
If you have experienced infidelity in your marriage, you may be wondering: What percentage of marriages survive infidelity? Are they any obvious signs for when to walk away after infidelity?
If you’re in a marriage where trust has been broken, you may start feeling like you could lift a car over your head sooner than you can repair the damage that has been done to your heart.
Do relationships work after cheating? The good news is that yes if you are committed, your marriage can be saved. But it is going to take a lot of effort, courage, and forgiveness.
How long does it take to get over infidelity? Keep reading to find out.
What is marriage infidelity?
Technology has turned ‘cheating’ into an umbrella term. There are now, horrifyingly, so many ways to be unfaithful to your partner.
Physical marriage infidelity:
Being physically intimate with someone outside of your marriage. This may include grinding, kissing, cuddling, and oral and penetrative sex.
Emotional marriage infidelity:
This means you have created a romantic, but not sexual, emotional relationship with someone outside your marriage.
Statistics show that both men and women are more likely to be upset by their partner having an emotional affair than a sexual one.
That’s not to say a sexual affair doesn’t hurt – emotional affairs seem to be a bigger slap in the face. They can’t be written off as some carnal desire. Instead, it suggests that your partner likes someone’s personality more than yours or that you are in some way lacking.
Grey area cheating:
Some might consider their partner watching pornography, going to a strip club, or entering a sex video chat to be cheating.
This all depends on someone’s boundaries. If your partner explains their sexual boundaries to you and you cross those lines, in their eyes, you have just been unfaithful.
What to do when you discover an affair
Living in a marriage after infidelity can make it feel like you’re living in a stranger’s home or a stranger’s body!
Can marriage be saved after infidelity? Sometimes the shock of finding out your partner has been unfaithful makes the answer unclear.
If you have just caught your partner having an affair, here are some simple Do’s and Don’ts to get you through the next few weeks.
Create a support system for yourself. This is not something you should shoulder on your own.
Ignore it. You may have a great life with kids that you don’t want to upset, but it is never worth ignoring a problem as big as an affair. Your partner’s affair signals a serious problem either with your marriage or with their respect for you.
Take some time to think about what you want to do. You may even keep knowledge of the affair to yourself for a few days while deciding whether you want to stay with your partner or consult a lawyer.
Fly off the handle. The calmer you are, the more control you will have over what happens next.
Get to the root of the problem if you choose to stay with your spouse. You don’t want any repeat situations in the future.
Will my marriage last after infidelity?
Can marriage be saved after infidelity?
What percentage of marriages survive infidelity?
Do relationships work after cheating?
These are questions you may be asking yourself after finding out your partner has been unfaithful.
How long does a marriage last after infidelity? Psychiatrist Dr. Scott Haltzman, the author of The Secrets of Surviving Infidelity, cites that an average of 4 in 10 marriages will experience an affair in his research. Out of these, more than half will stay together.
A marriage can indeed be saved after infidelity, but it will not be an easy road, and both partners must be fully committed to the process.
How long does a marriage last after infidelity?
What percentage of marriages survive infidelity? Extensive research conducted by the American Psychological Association found that 53% of couples who experienced infidelity in their marriage were divorced within 5 years, even with therapy.
The study says that couples who have been unfaithful are three times more likely to separate than monogamous couples.
So, do relationships work after cheating? The statistic above doesn’t sound great but consider it another way: 47% of couples stayed together.
6 Tips for surviving infidelity
How long does it take to get over infidelity? If you’re in the throes of finding out your partner has cheated, it feels like it will take forever.
The truth is, it takes time.
You need to rediscover the happiness in this new version of your relationship, learn to forgive, and weigh the options of when to walk away after infidelity.
Here are 6 tips for how to cope with your heartbreak
1. Have the desire to fix things
Now that we know what percentage of marriages survive infidelity, it’s time to act. To heal your relationship, you must both have the desire to make it work.
This means prioritizing your marriage, not just while things feel broken, but from this point on for the rest of your relationship.
2. End the affair
How long does a marriage last after infidelity? Not very long if the guilty spouse is still having an affair or is still in contact with this person.
To have a successful marriage after infidelity, all third parties need to be removed from the relationship. This is the only way to restore trust.
3. Find yourself again
Whether you want your relationship to succeed or you’re looking for signs of when to walk away after infidelity, you should start with getting to know who you are.
People tend to get lost in their relationships. The marriage becomes their identity. Take time to focus on yourself, your wants, your needs, and your hobbies.
Having a better sense of self will help you make the best decision for your life in the future.
4. Have open communication
How long does a marriage last after infidelity? A lot longer if couples are willing to be open and honest with one another.
Not to mention, communication opens the air. It lets partners know they can talk to each other, and after finding out about an affair, you’re going to want to do a lot of talking.
Start by speaking openly and honestly about how the affair made you feel.
Be calm, if possible. This is naturally a heartbreaking topic to cover with your spouse. Still, your conversation will be a thousand times more productive if you express your feelings instead of yelling and name-calling.
Listen. Both partners should give each other a chance to speak and become engaged listeners.
Give yourself space. If you can’t handle emotionally brave conversation or are worried that you’re going to say something you will regret, take a minute. Take a day – take a week! Give yourself time to process.
5. Go to couple’s counseling
A counselor can help you and your partner see things from an unbiased perspective.
They can also help you structure a plan for rebuilding trust and making your marriage strong again.
6. Rebuild your relationship
How long does it take to get over infidelity? If you do not have intimate time with your partner, it could take years.
Understandably, you may not be itching to be physically intimate with your spouse after finding out about their affair. Still, it’s important to connect on an emotional level if you want to repair the damage.
Can marriage be saved after infidelity? Only if your partner is willing to work with you. You can’t fix your marriage by yourself.
Don’t ignore the signs telling you when to give up on marriage after infidelity. Doing so will only lead to more heartache.
Will infidelity pain ever stop hurting?
How long does a marriage last after infidelity? The pain can make it feel impossible. It’s a constant heart-sinking, throbbing pain that is so painful, some might prefer a physical wound to the emotional scars of an affair.
You’ll be happy to know that there are temporary quick fixes for the pain you’re feeling:
Taking up a hobby
Reconnecting with yourself
Spending time with your friends
Some people find the steps of fixing their marriage to be healing and therapeutic.
But sometimes, when the rush of the situation settles down, and you feel some sense of normalcy, those painful fears kick in. You may have thoughts like:
“Is my spouse secretly talking to someone else again?”
“My partner was unfaithful before. Who’s to say they won’t hurt me again?”
“I’m happy again. Does that mean that I’ve let my guard down too much?”
It’s hard to shake these thoughts after you’ve been hurt by someone else, but as they say, time heals all wounds.
Can marriage be saved after infidelity? If you can give yourself grace and time to heal, it most certainly can.
Learn more about the consequences of emotional affair with this video:
How long does a marriage last after infidelity? The answer depends on you and your spouse.
If you are willing to work together, seek therapy, and rebuild your relationship, you can be a shining success story.
How long does it take to get over infidelity? It could take years to recover from the damage of being betrayed thoroughly, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find happiness in the meantime.
Knowing when to walk away after infidelity can be difficult, but you will do more harm than good by staying in a broken relationship.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.