Michele Bird
May 02, 2016 2:10 pm
iStock / sdominick

Relationships have always been entirely based off of love, trust, and commitment. I always wanted these three qualities in a significant other, and when I met my first serious boyfriend I felt like I had hit the jackpot — then he broke my trust. Trusting someone is basically taking a leap of faith, because you’re counting on your partner to not let you down and giving them a piece of your heart. However, sometimes things don’t always go according to plan, and trust is broken. Without trust, it’s nearly impossible for a relationship to succeed — you’ll always have a nagging feeling in the back of your mind that something is wrong.

I entered my first serious relationship when I was in high school. It was my first time being in love, and together we went through all of the ups and downs that come with dating. My family loved him, he got along my friends, and I felt like I had really found my other half. We spent over four years together, and I would have never guessed it would have ended with cheating.

I found out this crushing detail a few months after what ended up being our last anniversary together. So many questions ran through my mind, like why did this happen? and who is this person? These were things I’d never get the answer to.

Leaving my relationship was a hard decision. As I tried to rekindle things with him, I always knew in the back of mind it wouldn’t ever be the same as it was before he’d cheated on me. I ultimately chose to sever ties because I knew the trust, love, and commitment was no longer there like it once was.

Cheating has a way of scarring a person. You’re left with a sense of insecurity and mistrust as you begin to date again. Ghosts of the past tend to resurface at the most inopportune moments. When I entered my next relationship, I was nervous to put myself out there again. I didn’t want to give away my heart, in fear that cheating could happen again in the future. I knew it wasn’t fair since my new SO had done nothing to raise red flags, but the emotional scars of past were getting the best of me.

What’s great about my SO is his unconditional love and understanding as he helped me mend those scars. Whenever I have any doubt or insecurity, he’s always there to reassure me that nothing’s wrong. By having a strong line of communication, we were able to lay a solid foundation of transparency and honesty within our relationship. Almost four years later, we’re still together riding out life’s good and bad moments as a stronger couple each passing day.

Giving out trust after getting cheated on is never easy. Part of me will always have a tendency to overanalyze and worry, but I choose to not let it get the best of me like it once did. I needed to stop letting the past dictate my life and move forward with an open heart all at once. It was no easy task, but taking it day by day helped me the most.

Whether you write a song or confide in a loved one to try to get over it, recovering from an infidelity has no set pathway. It’s not an ideal situation to go through, but I can guarantee it will teach you a lot about yourself. Love will always be a gamble, because some will break your heart and others will be trustworthy and love you unconditionally. What counts the most is getting back up and learning to bounce back even after the worst kind of heartbreak.

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