No one can decide whether to continue a marriage after an affair but the two people in it.
In some cases one will make that decision for both of you – the one who has been having the affair may leave and choose not to come back leaving the betrayed spouse with no decision to make except how to heal from the hurt.
But in other situations the one who has had the affair doesn’t want to end the marriage – they are remorseful and very sorry and want to do all they can to make it up to the betrayed partner. The betrayed partner must then make a decision. Here are some things to think about as you work your way through this for yourself.
Give yourself time – it is almost impossible to make a decision when you are reeling from the shock of the discovery and you can’t concentrate – your brain feels like mush. This may take a long time. So begin the work on healing you and the rest will become clearer as you go along.
Tune out the opinions of well meaning friends, family and even professionals who think they know what you should do. Most people believe that if it happened to them they would definitely end the relationship – that is until it happens to them. Find the friends that will give you the space to work things through and find what is best for you. Tune the others out until you are clear about what you want to do.
The one who had the affair is going to need to change and grow significantly for the trust and honesty to be rebuilt for any future relationship. See whether they are willing to do this and as you notice this growth (or not) it will become clearer whether to continue the marriage (or not). I have written more about this in another article here.
Whether you choose to continue the marriage or divorce you will be embarking on a journey of growth and healing – neither pathway is easy and will test all the courage and resiliency you can muster to move out of the pain.
Choosing to continue in the marriage is like a giant leap off a cliff where you hope your partner will be there to catch you but there are no guarantees. Only you know if it is right for you to take that leap.