emotionally exhausted because of my cheating spouse

“My spouse is cheating. I’m hurting and emotionally exhausted because of my cheating spouse. How can I stop hurting and become emotionally healthy again?” In almost every conversation I have with a client, these are the statements I hear. I have so much compassion for these clients because I know all too well how that feels. 

If this is where you are emotionally, then this is for you. Some researchers say that finding out your spouse is cheating is worse than experiencing the death of someone you love. The reason is that when someone dies, we must accept that they’re gone. But the pain from an affair is resurrected every time you see or think of that person. 

So the pain that you’re experiencing is genuine and excruciating. So what can you do to make the pain more manageable and for you to get healthy?


You Have To Accept That This Is Happening

Living in denial is only going to keep you in pain. Dr. Joe beam says hiding under the covers from the boogeyman only works if the boogeyman isn’t real. So denying that you are in this place with your spouse isn’t going to help you. I encourage you to accept that this is happening. When we begin to accept the situation for what it is, we can start to change and heal.


Take Control Of Your Emotions

Now listen, I’m not telling you that you can’t cry or be angry. It is normal to feel emotionally exhausted because of a cheating spouse. If you need to cry, then cry. If you are angry, be angry. All I’m saying is, don’t allow your emotions to control your actions. 

We hear stories about individuals who go and do outrageous things to hurt their spouses or get back at their spouses because of what has happened. And that doesn’t do anything but make the situation worse for you and your spouse. It is better that you allow yourself to feel the emotions but don’t allow them to drive you to act out. Controlling your feelings creates an environment for the healing process to begin. 

One of the best things, when you feel your emotions are overwhelming, is to take a deep breath and slowly exhale. You may have to do it more than once. Now, this isn’t going to fix everything, but it allows your brain to refocus. When your brain refocuses, your body responds. Find resources to help you channel your emotions into something that will not cause additional pain to you or your spouse. Try things like meditation, journaling, prayer, or mindfulness exercises. All these tools can make you successful in coping with the emotions you’re experiencing.


Start Using SMART Contact

In short, SMART contact is a way to communicate with your spouse that eliminates speaking about topics or using behavior that pushes your spouse away from you. SMART contact is a great tool to set boundaries for yourself for things you shouldn’t discuss with your spouse right now. It reminds you that talking about things outside of the parameters of SMART contact can eventually lead you to more pain, at least for now. 


Focus On What You Can Control

The only thing you can control in this situation is you. So begin to identify the areas you need to work on to improve yourself and your situation. If you are struggling with that, we have toolkits and coaches to help you identify these areas. 

Begin To Work On Yourself

Begin to work on yourself physically, intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. At this point in your crisis, you want to start at the beginning of what we call the LovePath. You want to become the best version of yourself that you can be. When we are the best we can be, we become more confident. And that confidence begins to radiate because we feel good about who we are. 

I don’t know about you, but when I was in a state of brokenness, I lost my confidence and self-worth. But when I started working on myself, that confidence began to rebuild, and my self-worth began to grow. We want you to do this because it is the right thing to do. From those actions, you will become attractive again. You will start healing, and that will attract people to you. More importantly, your spouse can feel attracted to you again. 

I want to caution you about this. Be sure you work on yourself for the right reasons. That is, work on yourself to be the best version of yourself, not just to get your spouse back. Because if your motivation is to do this to get your spouse back, it won’t stick. Suppose you do this with the idea to get your spouse back, but then when your spouse doesn’t respond in the way you want them to. You’ll stop, and then they will think that you were trying to manipulate them. So do it with the right motivation.

Our CEO, Kimberly Holmes, has a podcast called “It Starts With Attraction.” I strongly recommend checking it out and listening to it regularly while you’re on this journey. So many things begin to happen within you when you work on being the best version of yourself.


Remember This

I need to take a detour right here and mention something to you. When we are in crisis, we often want to control things, specifically our spouse. When we try to control our spouse, it can drive our relationship with our spouse right into a ditch. People will try to control because they are afraid of what may happen. I want to encourage you to focus on only the things you can control, which is you. Your spouse may do things that cause you deep emotional pain, but trying to control them will only ensure that you and your spouse will experience more pain. 

So accept your spouse’s decisions, accept that this is how they feel and what they want. I’m not saying to accept behavior that would cause you or your children physical harm. But accepting how your spouse feels right now can get you on the road to healing. Because you take the situation for how it is right now, you begin to give the situation the freedom it needs to change. When you accept your spouse for what they feel right now, they have the freedom to change. And know that it may feel counterintuitive, but it is a crucial piece to you moving forward towards healing. 

When you are not focused on controlling them but rather on doing the things I’m talking about, we are speeding up your healing process. So don’t let anything someone else is doing distract you from getting the emotional healing you need.


Work Towards Forgiveness

Forgiveness is a moral gift that you give a person despite what they have done to you. You have to see your spouse as a flawed person to do this. You have to decide to forgive and then realize that the decision to forgive and the process of forgiving are two different things. For a while, you’ll have to choose to forgive every day. You will have to continue to remind yourself that you choose to forgive and then interact with your spouse in a way that demonstrates that forgiveness. 

It is important to note that you won’t feel like you have forgiven them at first. But as you continue to decide to forgive and treat your spouse like you have, your emotions will follow. So many times, people will say, “But they haven’t even asked for forgiveness. And they’re not even sorry. So why should I forgive them?” My answer is: you deserve to be free from pain. You deserve to live your life with joy and peace. You deserve to feel love in your heart, and you deserve to heal. And an essential piece of healing is forgiving others. Without this, the pain will hold you prisoner. You will feel shackled to this agony that you’re feeling right now. 

Don’t do that to yourself. You have been through enough. Instead, take steps to be you again so that you can thrive again. Forgive to set yourself free. And know that if you feel emotionally broken and you want the pain to stop, these steps will be essential to your journey of becoming emotionally healthy again. The pain isn’t going to go away magically. Time does not heal all wounds. Only truly loving yourself enough to take steps towards healing will make you emotionally healthy again.


Start Today

I encourage you today to decide to do these things even if you don’t feel like doing them. Enough is enough. Only you can control your healing. I’ve been in your shoes. I know this pain. One quote that got me to take steps towards recovery comes from one of my favorite movies, Shawshank Redemption: “Get busy living or get busy dying.” That one line helped me see that I was promoting my own emotional pain and death by letting my emotions control me, lying around being depressed, and hanging on to bitterness and unforgiveness. I decided I wanted to live, and I wanted to heal emotionally. So I got busy doing just that. 

I encourage you today to do the same. I hope this has helped identify the steps you need to take to become emotionally healthy again. You can click here to access our free mini-course designed to teach you how to get your spouse back, even when you feel emotionally exhausted. You can also click here to learn the four ways to attract your spouse back to you, explained in much greater detail. Remember, there is always hope. We’re here for you every step of the way.