6 Things to Keep In Mind In Your Next Relationship If You've Been Cheated On
Being cheated on is so difficult.
Not only does it ruin the relationship you're already in, but it also affects your future romances. If you've been cheated on, it's hard to trust again, even if your next partner is entirely honest.
But it's important to remember that one bad experience doesn't mean the rest of your dating life is doomed. Rather than carrying your baggage into the next relationship, reframing the way you think about things can help you leave your cheating partner in the past where they belong.
Keep scrolling for six things to keep in mind in your next relationship if you've been cheated on.
Every Partner Is Different
First and foremost, it's important to remember that every partner is different. If you've been hurt deeply by someone, it's easy to embrace a cynical point of view. You might imagine that every person you meet is just out for themselves or that other people aren't capable of compassion and love. But that just isn't true. One bad partner does not mean that all your partners will be bad. Even if you've only dated trash up to this point, each new partner presents a different experience you should be open to.
If you enter a relationship looking for similarities between your current partner and your ex, you'll definitely find them. Instead, remember your new partner is their own person with their own flaws. They might not be perfect, but that doesn't mean they're going to cheat on you.
Red Flags Should Be Taken Seriously
While it's certainly not your fault that your partner cheated on you, it is possible that you ignored a few red flags that could have saved you some pain in your last relationship. When you're caught up in those lovey-dovey feelings, it's easy to explain away concerning behavior.
But when you enter your next relationship, don't put your blinders up and ignore the red flags. Instead, remember that warning signs could be indicative of big problems down the line. If your partner seems shady or at all untrustworthy at the beginning of your romance, it's unlikely things will improve. Save yourself more heartbreak in the future and take red flags seriously the first time you see them, even if that means ending a relationship before it really begins.
It's Okay to Have Trust Issues
Being cheated on is a very painful, jarring experience. To expect that you'll enter your next relationship with zero trust issues is just plain unrealistic. You were already hurt by someone you trusted, which means you'll question the decision to rely on someone else in the future.
In your new relationship, it's totally okay to have trust issues. Don't beat yourself up for recovering from emotional trauma. While you can't put those trust issues on your new partner, you should be able to confide in them and work through your feelings together. If they get annoyed every time you bring up your fears, they're probably not the right person for you.
(Riverdale via The CW)
Talking About It Takes Away Its Power
Because you're bound to have trust issues in your new relationship, it's important to talk through how your last romance ended. If your new partner has no idea that you were cheated on or how deeply it affected you, they're going to find it difficult to be compassionate towards your current relationship struggles.
While you don't need to spend all your time recounting every detail of the cheating, you should be open to talking about it. By talking through those feelings and actions with your new partner, you allow the two of you to find ways to move forward together. Instead of being something that constantly interferes in your new relationship, the past instance of cheating can be something that draws you and your partner closer together and allows you to express exactly what you need from a relationship moving forward.
Speaking Up Is Better Than Silence
There are so many issues that arise when you're cheated on. One of the most difficult to deal with, however, is your inability to trust yourself. You didn't realize your partner was cheating, so how can you trust your instincts now? Even worse, you start questioning if the things that bother you in your relationship now are valid, or if you're just being paranoid.
The truth is the answer won't always be clear, but it's better to speak up than to try and deal with your problems in silence. If some of your partner's behavior is concerning to you, don't be afraid to say something. If your partner truly cares, they'll be willing to talk it out with you. It's always better to speak up in the moment, even if you're being a little paranoid, than to let something build up and eventually explode.
Healing Takes Time
Most importantly, remember that healing from a big hurt takes time. While you might feel like you're totally over the cheating, odds are certain triggers in your new relationship will bring up all those old feelings all over again. But don't beat yourself up for struggling to move on.
It may take a long while before you feel you're fully able to trust a new partner. You may also find that you still get upset about your ex from time to time. All this is normal and just part of the healing process. Don't try to rush yourself into feeling better when your emotions still need time to mend themselves. Instead, try to approach your new relationship with as clean a slate as possible, and deal with the residual feelings of anger and frustration without judging yourself.
Looking for more advice on cheating? Click HERE for 30 signs your S.O. might be cheating on you.