Cheating is quite simply the worst thing you can do in a marriage. Throughout our lives, we have been told that infidelity is the biggest sin and divorce is the only option when this happens. Sadly, I see wives being unable to come to terms with their husbands cheating. They aren’t able to decide what they should do, and often ask ‘Should I divorce my cheating husband?’
Cheating does not have to lead to divorce. Your spouse has obviously done an incredible sin and he should pay for his mistakes. However, you must decide whether punishing him with a divorce is worth it. Before you go ahead with a divorce, you may want to talk to your cheating spouse and determine whether this was a simple mistake or a long-drawn-out consensual affair.
A good place to start is taking the marriage assessment quiz, so we can see where you are and if we can get you both back to where you were on your wedding day.
Different Types of Cheating and Their Effect on Marriage
Infidelity can take on many forms. Yes, your husband cheated on you with another woman, but it’s his mindset that matters. Before you make a decision on whether you should divorce him, you must understand what the affair meant to him.
It goes without saying that if you suddenly catch your husband in multiple affairs that have lasted for years, then divorce is your only option. People who are unable to feel empathy (especially for someone they married) should not get to enjoy the benefits of marriage. For some people, the thrill of infidelity is simply too much to pass up.
The good news is that the vast majority of men are not like that! Here are a few common forms of cheating and what they represent.
One Night Stands Are Usually a Mistake
If your marriage was going great, then it is probable that your husband had a one-night stand. Obviously, I am not trying to downplay the situation. However, this is perhaps the easiest form of infidelity to forgive. Humans can make a mistake, even when they are married and in love with their spouses.
If it was just one night, then your husband probably lost himself in the moment and wasn’t able to resist temptation. Of course, he has to make it up to you and you should be extremely angry with him. However, you should also be willing to strive towards forgiveness (eventually).
Digital Cheating Often Tells You About Your Sex Life
One of the most common questions I get from troubled wives is whether they were cheated on if they caught their husband sexting someone else. Sexting is a form of cheating and one that should not be tolerated. However, just like a one-night stand, it is possible for the two of you to move on from such a debacle.
Let’s face it, catching your spouse sexting someone probably did not hurt you as much as it would have if he was having a full-blown sexual affair. It is right to be hurt and to let him know just how terribly he treated you. That said, you should explore the reasons why your husband was sexting someone in the first place.
In my experience, someone who is married but cheating on their spouse in a sexual but non-physical way is unsatisfied with their sex life. If your husband is sexting someone else, trying to spice up your sex life may turn his full-focus back on you.
Similarly, even if your husband is not sexting anyone but only talking to random women online, he is looking for promiscuity. Providing him what he needs yourself may prevent him from going online to get his fix.
A Long Drawn Out Sexual Affair is Quite Bad!
If your husband has been having a casual affair with another woman for a long time, then you have a problem. A single or even two sexual encounters can be forgiven. However, if he has a ‘friends with benefits’ relationship with someone and he has cheated on you numerous times, then it shows that he has no regard for your feelings.
Divorce in a situation like this is extremely common. Nobody wants to be married to a cheating husband. The only thing you should consider is the effect of a divorce on your children.
I have seen some women sacrifice their happiness for the future of their children. If your husband is still there to emotionally support you and is a great father, then it may be worth it for some women to stay. Personally, I would never advise anyone to live an unhappy life for any reason. As such, divorce is probably your best course of action.
An Emotional Affair is Extremely Complicated
Emotional infidelity is perhaps the hardest thing to wrap your head around as a wife. Regardless of whether your husband was sexually involved with someone else, he found the very thing in her that men look for in a wife.
Usually, when husbands have an emotional affair, they are the ones that pursue a divorce. We have covered what you should do when this happens.
Due to their complicated nature, I would advise you to speak to a marriage counselor about emotional affairs. Each one is unique, If your husband has ended his affair and still wants to be with you, then you are lucky. Even if he doesn’t, talking to an experienced therapist may help him rediscover his love for you.
When Should I Divorce my Cheating Husband?
We have already discussed that you should divorce your husband if he cheated on you multiple times (and especially with multiple women). Here are a few other signs that your husband has checked out of the marriage. If you notice these, it is probably time to send him packing!
He Stops Caring About You
Despite their infidelity, I see many cheating husbands still care for their wives as if they are the only women they have ever looked at. This is why I usually recommend couples to at least try to stay together even if one of them cheats.
However, when your husband constantly hurts your feelings and doesn’t care, it is obvious you mean little to him. Obviously, it is possible to change his attitude towards you, and you should definitely try. However, there has to be a point where you throw in the towel and file for divorce.
You Don’t Feel Anything For Him Anymore
For many women, infidelity is something that they simply cannot get over. Once they find out that their husband was with someone else, they are unable to look at him the same way that they used to. For these women, divorce is the best way forward.
But before you call your lawyer, let your anger subside a little. In the heat of the moment, you may feel like you will never be able to look at your husband the same. However, it is possible that you begin to miss him once you are done with the legal process of separating your lives for good.
If you have decided to divorce him, I would advise you to think it over for at least a few days. Maybe there comes a point when he is begging on his knees for forgiveness and you start to see the same person that you fell in love with. It is possible that he manages to change his ways and ends up becoming a better husband than he ever was before.
You Start to Become The Other Woman
Despite all your ultimatums and threats, he is unable to end his affair. Not only that, but he starts to think of his girlfriend as his paramour, and you as a roadblock to happiness. He starts to forgo his duties as a husband and a father to spend time with his mistress, and there is nothing you can do to change him.
When this happens, you should immediately file for divorce. It is much better and easier to stop wasting time on your husband and instead look towards finding a new relationship that is healthy and makes you happy.
Your Husband Thinks he is Doing You a Favor by Ending His Affair
If you manage to convince your husband to end his affair and stay with you, you may think you have won. Sadly, this is not always the case.
If your husband is apologetic and tries his best to make it up to you, then recovery is possible (note that I still didn’t say recovery is certain). However, when he acts that he is doing you a favor by being with you, it means that he has stopped respecting you as a woman and as a human being.
At this point, there is no point in wasting your time on a relationship that is doomed. While the notion of marriage being a ‘Happy ever after’ is stupid, it should have a net positive impact on your life at the very least. If it seems like your husband will never appreciate you for all that you have done, it’s time to sign those papers!