Ending an affair is always difficult, but ending affairs when you are in love can be incredibly difficult.
Still, ending your affair might be the right thing to do and you feel that you have no choice.
Whatever the reason, if you’ve decided that you have to end your affair but know you love them you need to be prepared.
Here are 10 things you should know and be prepared for when ending an affair with someone you love and deeply care for:
Ending Affairs when You Are in Love – 10 Things You Need to Prepare For!
1. It’s Going to Be Harder than You Think
I’m not trying to put you off ending your affair or make it more difficult, I just want you to be fully prepared.
Breaking up with someone you love, even if it’s an affair and you have a relationship to go back to, is one of the toughest things you’ll do.
I just want you to be prepared for the fact that no matter how difficult it is, and I’m sure you’re sweating with anxiety over it, it’s probably going to be harder.
It’s almost impossible to predict how we’re going to feel when such powerful emotions are involved, as well as how your affair is going to take it.
Don’t make any decisions lightly, and make sure you’ve thought through as many scenarios and what you’re going to do in the coming weeks as you can.
Related – Can an affair really turn into love?
2. It Will Take a Long Time to Get Over It – If You Ever Do
Along with being difficult to deal with, you also have to prepare yourself for the fact that it’s going to take a long time to get over this person.
If you ever do.
If you’ve loved and lost before, whether it was your idea to split up or not, you’ll know how difficult it is to get that person out of your mind.
You’ll see them everywhere, in everything, for a long time.
It’s torture, but it’s something you’re going to have to go through if you want to put your affair behind you.
3. You Will Not Be Completely Free from Guilt After
If you’re hoping that ending your affair is going to make all of the guilt you’re feeling suddenly go away, that’s just not a reality.
You will always feel some guilt, no matter how amicable your breakup is or how much you both agree it’s for the best.
It’s natural to feel guilty when you end something, especially if you were in love with the person.
What’s important is that you learn to deal with that guilt and move on from it, or it will eat away at you.
4. You Have to Set Boundaries With Your Affair
Just because you’re ending the affair doesn’t mean that they are going to disappear from your life.
Maybe you work at the same place, live in the same town, and have shared friends, for most people, there is always going to be some kind of connection.
The best thing you can do is set some boundaries with them when you have your ‘breakup chat’ so you know exactly where you stand and what you’re going to do going forward.
You don’t have to be best friends, but it’s important to be civil and respectful, especially if you’re going to see them around.
5. It Doesn’t Mean You’re Going to Be Able to Repair Your Relationship
Along with losing the guilt, ending an affair doesn’t mean you’re also going to magically repair your relationship.
There was a reason why you had an affair in the first place, and more so why you fell in love with someone else.
Those reasons are still there, they haven’t gone away just because you’re not seeing each other anymore.
You need to deal with those underlying issues if you want to have any chance of repairing your relationship.
6. You May End Up Regretting Your Decision One Day
Like most big relationship decisions, there is a chance you’ll not be able to get back what you’ve lost and you may regret your decision one day.
It’s not a given, but it’s something you should be prepared for.
There’s always the chance that you’ll look back and wonder what could have been, what you could have done differently.
It’s important to remember why you made the decision to end your affair and own all of the ups and downs that come with it.
7. You Will Need to Forgive Yourself to Start Healing
The first step to moving on from your affair and healing is forgiving yourself.
You need to let go of the guilt and shame you’re feeling, and start to accept that what’s done is done.
It’s not going to be easy, and it will probably take some time, but it’s an important step in the healing process.
Forgiving yourself is also a way of moving on from your affair, and it will allow you to start rebuilding your life.
You’re not a bad person for having an affair, remember that.
8. It Helps a Lot if You Have Someone to Confide In
If you’re finding it difficult to deal with your emotions and the fallout from your affair, it can help to have someone to confide in.
Talk to a friend, family member, therapist, or anyone who will listen and be there for you.
It’s important to have someone to talk to who understands what you’re going through and can offer support and advice or you’ll feel very alone.
9. You’ll Need to Change So This Doesn’t Happen Again
How you ended up deep in an affair and falling in love with someone other than your partner is in the past.
One of the things you need to focus on going forward is that you don’t end up in a similar situation.
If you want to avoid going through this again, you’re going to need to change.
You need to take a good, hard look at yourself and your life and figure out what needs to change.
Ask yourself; what led you to stray in the first place? What needs were not being met in your current relationship?
How are things going to be different?
10. You Need to Get in Touch with Your Feelings
Throughout all of this, it’s important to get in touch with your feelings.
This is a huge move and there are going to be a lot of emotions involved.
Allow yourself to feel them and don’t try to push them away or bottle them up.
It’s okay to be sad, angry, scared, or anything else you’re feeling.
The only way to move on and heal is to feel your emotions and work through them.
Can You Be Friends After Ending an Affair?
It’s possible to stay friends after ending an affair, but it’s not for everyone and every situation.
You need to take a good look at your own situation and be honest about whether or not you think it’s going to work or make it a lot harder for you to focus on your partner.
There’s no right or wrong answer, it’s whatever is best for you and your situation.
If you decide to stay friends with your former affair partner, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
- You need to set boundaries and be clear about what your relationship is now.
- You also need to be honest with your partner about your friendship and make sure they’re okay with it.
- You need to be honest with yourself, if your feelings for your affair partner are getting in the way of your relationship you need to distance yourself.
If you’re not sure if you can be friends with your former affair partner, it’s probably best to cut ties and move on.
Should You Tell Your Partner You Had an Affair?
This is a tough question to answer and there’s no right or wrong answer.
You need to be honest with yourself about why you’re considering telling your partner and if you think it will help or hurt your relationship.
You also need to be prepared for the possible consequences of telling your partner, both for your relationship and your former affair’s relationship.
If you decide to tell your partner, be prepared for the fallout and be willing to own what you’ve done and take full responsibility.
Likewise, if you decide not to tell your partner, you need to be able to control your feelings and guilt and not take it out on your partner who has no idea what’s happened.
It’s a tough decision to make, I wish you luck!
Image credits – Photo by Max on Unsplash
Phil lives in England, UK, and has around 20 years experience as a professional life, career and executive coach. He started this blog to help others find and define their own self development journey. Blogging about a wide range of topics to help facilitate a better future.