Forgiving an affair is a real challenge Few events in your life will be as devastating as learning that your partner has been cheating on you. Many couples will decide to end the relationship at that point, but those that decide to try to stick it out and make it work may find themselves in a stronger, more committed relationship.

Remember, You're Not the One Who Cheated.

Many people are very clever at deflecting the blame for their transgressions. Don't let this happen - cheating is a serious thing, and even though you may have contributed in some way, it was free will that drove your partner to cheat, not something you did. You cannot be beating yourself up over this - the fact that your partner strayed doesn't mean you're a bad person. Before you even consider forgiving your partner for the affair, you must first forgive yourself.

Don't Use This as Ammunition

Don't think for a moment that you're going to be able to dredge up your partner's affair and use it in every argument to come - that way lies disaster. Reminding your partner all the time about the affair isn't going to do much good in terms of healing your own relationship.

Explore Your Heart

It's not going to be easy to forgive your partner's affair, but before you even try, you've got to get over those initial feelings of betrayal and pain. As the doctor says, where does it hurt? Are you feeling embarrasses and humiliated, or betrayed and angry? Or pretty much everything? Times like this are the best time for letting all your emotions out.

Remember, don't let this turn into an opportunity to point fingers and lay blame. Explore your own emotions, but don't focus blame. The kind of emotions you're feeling are pretty strong, and there's nothing wrong with screaming, or crying. Sooner or later, you really will get past that initial reaction.

Obviously, reacting to the affair with mostly negative emotions doesn't do anyone any good; hopefully, you're now at a point where you can focus clearly and concentrate on growing together and moving forward.

Sit Down Together and Talk Things Through

You need to do it, and it's going to be among the more difficult things you've ever done, but you've still got to do it. With your partner - and only your partner - have an honest conversation about the cause of the infidelity. Talking about such a subject until it's thoroughly understood will undoubtedly cause some pain, but unless you have this conversation, you're relationship probably won't grown and thrive in the future.

If you want to overcome the affair, you've got to understand it. Sit down with your partner and have a civil, calm discussion about it. Knowing how each of you felt about what the other was doing may help you to be more considerate of each other in the future. How did you feel about the affair when you found out about it? How did your partner feel? Like much medicine, the truth is painful, but in the long run, it's the best thing. Once you're talking together, don't get defensive or engage in any other immature behavior, like blaming each other.

There's an old saying: "You can be right, or you can be happy." The problem is, if all you do is keep emphasizing that you were the victim, you're signaling that you're not willing to acknowledge that anything you may have done contributed to the problem. Good communication isn't just making sure you're heard - it involves a great deal of listening and opening up your heart.

Make a Relationship That Neither of you Will Want to Cheat On

Moving forward is the next step of your planning, but only after you and your partner have thoroughly discussed the issue. If you understand what led to the affair in the first place, you can agree on how to avoid such situations in the future. Likewise, you need to agree on ways to improve your communications. Having a relationship may have been a goal for you before the affair. That's not good enough anymore - you've got to commit to improving it.

Learning to forgive a challenge is every bit as difficult as learning that your partner has cheated. Like all sorrowful times, this can be overcome as you work together to forge new memories and good times together. Like all good things in life, it'll take some work and commitment, but working together you can rebuild your faith in each other and your life together.

Author's Bio: 

If you found this information helpful and you want to learn even more ways to move on after an affair, check out: healing infidelity and

Sarah Scott enjoys helping women deal with the conflicts and challenges they experience in relating with men and helping them form successful relationships.