teamnoir (teamnoir) wrote in polypagans,

Recovering from Cheating

I have a strange question for this group.

In monogamy, when there has been an indiscretion, (cheating), the standard advice usually given is to:

Step #1: end the affair
Step #2: rebuild trust

The alternative, of course, is either to open the relationship, which would seem to me to be extremely difficult following a betrayal like cheating. Or to end the first relationship, resulting in a sort of overlapping serial monogamy.

Question: Are there any other plausible or practical approaches?

I've always known that cheating was possible in a poly context, but I've never paid much attention to it because it just seemed so silly and pointless. But I find myself in a situation like that now. And I'm wondering...

How do people recover? Does it require ending the "affair"? Has anyone successfully recovered the original relationship without ending the affair?
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I believe that with enough love and trust you can continue on with your partner even if there's been a serious affair. Sometimes it may seem impossible and like you can't possibly get back to where you were.. but you can. The affair will change things and you will always have it in your mind but if you love enough, you can get past it.
Thank you.

Do you think it requires ending the affair?

It may. I think that would depend on the people involved and if anyone feels that trust needs to be regained and to what extent. And then with any affair, there may be the question of who needs to go get tested for anything. Maybe not for all, but in the past when someone had "cheated" in our group it was required and there was usually a no sex ban until things came up ok. Harsh for some, perhaps, but that's what was worked for us.

But Billin is correct about love. I think it would also make a difference on how much you wanted to make things work. I'm a bit more of a cynic, I'm afraid, and often find myself in the "forgive, but not forget" camp.

Take the time to breathe, friend. You'll come thru this as well. Good luck to you.
it really depends on you and your partner. If you feel like you can deal with these two continuing a relationship, then by all means go forth. But if you don't feel 100% confident in your relationship, you are going to have a very hard time with your partner starting something romance-like with the object of the affair.
My partner had an emotional affair and it hurt me very much. However, I know that I am loved and I know my position with my partner isn't jeapardized by feelings for another person. It hurts sometimes to think about the affair, but I have blessed them now. They are happy together and we are happy together. There are days when I have my doubts because there was so much I didn't know in the beginning. Once there was open communication everything was/is better.
Thanks. Yes, my situation is different. Our relationship was threatened. I only discovered the (emotional) infidelity because I went looking for the source of the threat to our relationship. I'm convinced that the threat here hasn't been imagined as I have done in many other cases and am certainly still capable, but that it is, or at least was, real.
if you feel that the relationship is threatened by the affair, then you must take action that best fits you. If I felt like I was going to lose my partner or that the situation was so that I couldn't trust her, there would be no more us.
I think it better to end the affair and start over with a clean slate and a no-sex-until-telling rule.