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How to Thrive After Being Cheated On

From a relatively young age, it’s engraved in social media and on television what cheating entails. It often explains how it destroys relationships and how it can have long-lasting effects. I always knew that cheating is bad, but I never understood how being cheated on can follow a person years after a relationship has ended.

However, after my first long-term relationship, I understand how it feels to be one of these people experiencing low self-esteem after being cheated on. I am going to be honest when I say I have been sitting on writing this article because, truth be told, it is not easy being cheated on. For me, it has been over two years since it had happened and I didn’t want to particularly relive the past. Instead of writing about how angry and sad I was, I’m going to write about how I learned to thrive from this situation and I hope this can be insightful to those who may be having a hard time.

1. Don’t Hold onto the Past

This was my biggest setback. I kept myself in the past for way too long and wondered why I wasn’t getting anywhere after this breakup. You have to remember that this person isn’t worth the time and energy it takes to keep replaying past situations and wondering if something is wrong with you, what could you have done differently or why it happened to you. I let the past hold me back but when I started focusing on important things and began to let go, it truly felt like a weight was lifted from my chest.

2. Connect With Friends and Family

My friends and family were a huge support system during this time and through it, I learned to value the relationships I had with them. Connecting and socializing with peers is something that is not only going to push you out of your shell, but it is getting you out of your gloomy bedroom. Not only do you get outside, but you will start making memorable moments with your friends and family.

3. Set Goals

Setting goals is something I was never the greatest at. I began making little goals every day, whether it was to go outside for a walk or give myself downtime to read a few pages of a book. These goals soon turned into bigger goals, which gave me a larger focus on the things I wanted to accomplish by myself in life and they created value and a purpose for me.

4. Find a Hobby

Honestly, finding a hobby or something to distract yourself with is really important. If you don’t, you may just be angry and sulking around the house all day and night. During this time, I got into the hobby of reading. I took advantage of the fact that summer was nearing and spent a lot of time either at the beach or by the pool. Not only does a hobby help distract you but you may learn something new that you’re passionate about!

5. Learn What Self-Care Means to You

To be completely transparent, I have always had a difficult time finding the energy to take care of myself, physically and mentally. I used this time to reflect on myself as a person and on how I could improve myself to be someone that I truly love. Learning and finding self-care and self-love is more time-consuming than it may seem, but it is extremely important to do. When you take care of your mind and body, all of your goals and ambitions are going to look way easier to achieve. Having this form of care is a basic need for thriving after a situation like this.

Many people who have never been in this situation may not believe that infidelity can break a person down. It can be extremely difficult for one person and easier for another to deal with this situation. At the end of the day, whether you’re still with your partner or not, you need to thrive. Learning to thrive after any form of a difficult situation is important to do, as it will begin to teach you that you can do and accomplish anything, whether you’re with someone or not. I hope that this was insightful for you and that you can learn to thrive in any difficult situation that life may throw at you.

Ashley Ethier

Wilfrid Laurier '23

Ashley is a third year double major in Sociology and English at Wilfrid Laurier University. In her spare time she enjoys reading, walking her dogs and enjoying the simpler things in life.
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