Broken Heart

What is infidelity?

Infidelity may be explained as an act of a spouse getting involved in an intimate or sexual affair with an individual who is not your legally married wife or husband. It could as well involve the existence of an emotional relationship even when there isn’t any physical romance. The betrayal that results from a spouse having an emotional connection with a third party is as hurting as having sexual intimacy itself. Both circumstances result in trust issues and may end up causing separation of the spouses.

What leads to unfaithfulness in marriage?

The issue of unfaithfulness or infidelity among marriages is common and takes place in most if not all marriage relationships. Divorce statistics after infidelity that about 40% of the married spouse are affected by at least a single incident of unfaithfulness or infidelity. Ironically, even with such high rates of infidelity, most persons in marriage relationships affirm that unfaithfulness is wrong, including the ones who have cheated or are cheating.

In most cases, unfaithfulness results from a sense of emotional detachment among the spouses. Most of the individuals who partake the infidelity argue that they are ignored, unrecognised, unloved, feel insecure or feel unappreciated by their spouses, which translates into cheating as they search for what they lack in their marriage. However, it is not always true that this is the case. Some individuals cheat despite having stable and satisfactory marriage relationships. Therefore, it is difficult to explain why people become unfaithful in their marriages.ย  Despite the difficulty in determining the causes of infidelity, there are some obvious causes. For instance, the inability of spouses to handle marriage issues could progress into serious problems. In most cases when a spouse does not get the attention he/she needs from their spouse, they tend to find the same from other persons like co-workers, or close friends, this results in the likelihood of unfaithfulness. Also, boredom is the other major cause of infidelity among married spouses. When spouses live together for a while, they tend to get used to one another, the excitement disappears, their relationship becomes boring, in reaction to this, one or both spouses may end up searching for an exciting relationship outside their marriage, this consequently leads to unfaithfulness.

What is the effect of unfaithfulness?

How long does a marriage last after infidelity? Unfaithfulness could destroy even the strongest bond which ties two individuals through marriage and results in a divorce due to infidelity. Married people often face life-long challenges, and they need to make choices. Several can resolve the challenges they encounter well and afford to address their beliefs to avoid a hard decision, including separation through a divorce, from taking place, whereas many others find it harder to resolve the challenges like fidelity which render divorce their last alternative. Divorce usually takes effect when one partner breaks the marital vows that a couple took while getting married. Divorce marks the end of the marriage relationship that two married individuals had. The reasons for separation through divorce are usually varied among marriage relationships, however, it is acknowledged that unfaithfulness, financial challenges as well as poor communication are the key reasons for divorce today.

It is the bitter truth that unfaithfulness could affect even the best marriages. You could be the person on the fault or probably the victim of circumstances. Whereas several marriages may overcome the betrayal of infidelity, many others fail immediately the unfaithfulness is realised, leading to separation of the marriage partners.

But the big question is, when do you ask for a divorce after infidelity in your marriage? When is it right to walk away after infidelity? Here we provide you with key considerations before you take the big step-divorce! Before you take any action, it is critical that you take into consideration the scope of marriage. The following are the key factors for you to take into consideration to assist you to determine when to ask for a divorce after infidelity in your marriage.

When to Ask for Divorce After Unfaithfulness: Factors to Take into Consideration

(i) History

It would be crucial for you to take into consideration your spouse’s historical occurrences of similar acts. Has your spouse ever committed an act of infidelity in the past? Did your spouse act in a suggestive manner?

When you find that your spouse has the habit of cheating and does not show any sign of remorsefulness, and you find that you are not ready to cope with the situation, then it would be best for you to end the relationship and ask for a divorce.

On the other hand, when you find out that your spouse has always been faithful in the past and only made a single wrong decision, your spouse’s fidelity and faithfulness from the past should be taken into consideration while you decide to either salvage the marriage or ask for a divorce.

Additionally, take into consideration the past status of your marriage outside the issue of unfaithfulness. Is your marriage already having other deeper issues? Or is your marriage going on well?

(ii) Emotions

Emotions are the most difficult to deal with after infidelity has occurred. You need to identify the particular emotions you have after your spouse cheats. Particularly, are you still in love with your spouse? Is your spouse still in love with you? Are you not attracted to your husband after he cheated? Do you want to divorce cheating wife?

In case you find out that your spouse has developed strong emotions for the other person in question, this could imply that your marriage would not most probably overcome the effects of infidelity. On the other hand, in case your spouse shows how remorse he/she is and demonstrates that they will end communication with the other person, then you could consider salvaging your marriage rather than asking for a divorce due to infidelity.

Also, you should take into consideration your emotions in the sense that, if you decide to give your marriage another chance after the infidelity, are you the type of individual who can overcome that with time? Or are you the type of person that would be haunted by reality?

(iii) Longevity

How long has your marriage existed? Probably long enough or maybe in its early stages. All in all, the length of your marriage is one of the most important aspects to take into consideration while deciding to ask for a divorce or not after infidelity. In some cases, a spouse would make the mistake of being unfaithful after so many years of fidelity and faithfulness in marriage.

You should, therefore, take into consideration the life you have established together with your spouse over the years. Have you had children together? Have you established a business or own a house together? If you find that your spouse has admitted the fault and he/she is regretting it, you may consider saving your marriage rather than asking for a divorce.

On the other side, if your marriage is relatively new and you find that you and your spouse have not invested much together, this could be the most appropriate time for you to call it quits before things escalate and try your marriage life with another person.

(iv) Lies/Lack of Trust

Trust is one of the key pillars of any marriage relationship. Without trust, there is no relationship. The trust is usually built on truth and faithfulness. If maintained, trust can result in the progress and achievement of many things in a marriage. Similarly, lack of trust, which is built on lies, could be detrimental to a marriage and can affect many aspects of a couples’ life, such as parenthood and even finances.

For instance, if you find out that your spouse had attempted manipulating you through lies to advance their infidelity, you need to take into consideration whether you can trust your spouse again or not. Trust can be broken with just a single act of lying, but it could as well be built over time if there are commitment and perseverance between you and your spouse.

However, in case you find that the betrayal due to unfaithfulness is by far hard for you to bear, then you should consider asking for a divorce and taking separate ways with your spouse.

What are the types of Unfaithfulness?

According to legal definitions, unfaithfulness or infidelity involves a pair getting involved sexually where at least one individual has been married. However, in day to day context, there are various ways through which unfaithfulness can be perpetuated. For instance, some people feel that if their wife or husband kisses another person, it is wrong and they consider it as being infidelity, but it is not necessarily infidelity. The following are the popular forms of unfaithfulness:

Physical Affairs: In this type of infidelity, there is a mutual sexual connection and vaginal or anal sex. The most popular form of physical affair includes a one night stand, online affairs, long or medium-term affairs, and revenge cheating.

Emotional Affairs: This type of infidelity could be the most painful to the victim in most cases than even the sexual infidelity. This is so because, when a spouse develops an emotional connection with a third party implies that whereas your spouse might have not yet had sexual intimacy, his/her feelings have evolved into an emotional affair, which to many victims results in much pain.


In conclusion, what defines fidelity depends on what you and your spouse set as the boundary of fidelity and infidelity. You and your spouse should discuss openly and lay down what would be considered the breaking point of trust in your marriage. Additionally, if you feel you can’t go on with your marriage after infidelity, you need to understand what the legal framework about infidelity is before you consider taking a divorce decision.

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