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Is it normal to feel vengeful after discovering an affair?

Want to know how to survive an affair?
And handle your emotions for vengence so they don't destroy you?

If you’ve just found out your partner has cheated on you, there may be some vengeful thoughts running through your mind right now. This emotion stems from anger. Because you’ve been hurt, you want the cheater to get hurt too. You want to get back at your partner, the person he or she cheated with, or sometimes both of them.

The thing is that this emotion is perfectly normal to feel given the circumstances, however what’s not a good idea is if you actually act on those vengeful thoughts. Some people feel "obliged" to cheat back on their partners to even the scores. You may feel like cheating back even if you really don’t want to but simply want to do it as a defense mechanism to make sure your partner doesn’t cheat on you again.

The problem is that this isn’t going to make things better.

It will just damage the relationship still further. If your partner feels bad about cheating on you (and you then cheat back on him) it could make him lose this feeling of being sorry and might just result in him cheating on you again. This is how cycles of cheating occur in some relationships.

What other emotions are normal to feel after an affair?

It is normal to feel a wide range of emotions after finding out about your partner’s affair. Actually, if you’re not feeling any, then it’s a sign that you’re still in denial about the affair itself. The more you try to ignore your true feelings though, the more slowly they will go away. The following are common emotions people feel after finding out that their partner has an affair:

  1. Betrayal: It is said that the more you trust a person, the greater will be the impact once he or she betrays you. Betrayal is often the first emotion felt after knowing that someone violated your trust.

  2. Anger: This feeling usually comes together with the feeling of betrayal. Once you felt betrayed, you’d feel angry at the person who betrayed you or angry about the affair. You may even get angry at yourself for being a fool all this time.

  3. Suspiciousness: Because your partner violated your trust, it will be difficult for you to trust him or her again. You’re often struck with a recurring feeling of mistrust in your partner. You feel that he or she is doing something dishonest or questionable.

  4. Frustration: Seeing your relationship on the rocks after your partner’s affair will make you feel frustrated. You’ll feel frustrated in your partner, and you may also feel frustrated in yourself. But there are also those who feel frustrated in men or women in general, or even in people as a whole.

  5. Guilt: Some people feel guilty even when it’s their partner who had an affair. They blame themselves for their partner’s infidelity. In their minds, they’re thinking of “ifs” and “should haves”.

  6. Fear: After finding out about your partner’s affair, you will have various fears. You may fear that your relationship is over or that you can no longer fix it. You may also fear that the affair might continue or that your partner will have an affair again.

How can I rise above these emotions?

Surviving an affair means learning how to cope with different emotions in a healthy way. First of all, you must learn to have compassion, and forgive not only your partner, but also yourself.

Most of the time, we expect so much from ourselves that we get hard on ourselves when things don’t go according to plan. But in being too hard on yourself, you are also hurting the people you care about.

Need more info?

Yes, how does external dependency lead to marital infidelity?

What exactly constitutes an emotional affair?

What is the ripple effect of cheating on your spouse?

What signs should I watch out for to find out if my wife is having an affair?

Is my girlfriend cheating on me?