Sometimes we do things that later seem like we were self-sabotaging or shooting ourselves in the foot, without realizing that we’re making mistakes right there and then. It’s only after the accomplished facts and when what’s done is done that the reality kicks in and we find ourselves submerged in remorse.
Whether it’s a fight with our spouse that went too far or even a friendship that turned into an affair that we can’t seem to stop, we often end up causing irreparable damage to our marriages. And once we realize that it was our fault and that we caused it all out of ignorance, naivety, or a lack of wisdom, it can be hard to forgive ourselves.
We may even start to believe that we don’t deserve happiness. But the truth is, we all make mistakes. And if we’re willing to learn from them, we can often move on and have happy, healthy relationships again. So if you’re struggling to forgive yourself for ruining your marriage, remember to follow the steps listed in this article and shake it off. After all, it’s not the end of the world. There’s always hope for a new beginning.
5 steps to help you forgive yourself for ruining your marriage:
1. Be determined to start a journey of self-love and find peace and forgiveness:
Alright, let’s admit it. You ruined your marriage. It’s probably not something that you’re proud of, but it happened. And you know what? Forgiving yourself for it could be one of the hardest things that you’ll ever do. But it is also one of the most important. If you don’t work on forgiving yourself, you’d stay stuck in a cycle of self-loathing and regrets.
So, the first step you need to focus on in this journey is not to give up and fight until the end to find happiness again. It’s easy to get lazy and get too distracted from your goal or think that when enough time has passed you’d eventually forgive yourself and heal.
However, that’s not necessarily true and unless you make a conscious decision to heal and revive your happiness and joie de vivre, it won’t happen. You may even end up drawing more in the darkness of remorse and getting worse and worse. So pick yourself up, clear your mind and work actively on forgiving yourself and letting go.
2. Acknowledge that what you did is wrong:
If you’re wallowing in self-pity after realizing that you played a part in ruining your marriage, here’s some tough love for you: the second step to forgiveness is acknowledging that what you did was wrong. It’s easy to make excuses and try to justify your actions, but at the end of the day, you need to learn from your mistakes.
To forgive yourself is one thing but to deny your role in what happened is another. So understand that before you can forgive yourself, you will have to ditch the excuses and the lies you may be telling yourself sometimes about how it wasn’t your fault. Confront yourself, look at yourself in the mirror and admit that you played an important role in ruining the marriage.
Perhaps you were too immature, naive, reckless, and irresponsible and that could be a version of you that is now in the past and doesn’t reflect who you are in the present time and who you’ll be in the future. But, in the end, it was you who made poor choices and it is you the one to blame; for this reason, you should do better in the future.
3. Find the real reason behind your mistakes:
Thirdly, keep in mind that in order to move on, you need to find the real reason behind your actions. Once you understand why you did what you did, it will be easier to forgive yourself and start fresh. If you cheated you have to ask yourself why. Were you feeling undervalued by your partner? Were you lacking the attention you need to feel happy? Or were you simply being selfish and reckless in the heat of a fleeting moment with someone else?
Sitting alone and reflecting calmly on the reasons why you did what you did can be the start of a great self-discovery journey, that will enable you to explore your deepest subconscious desires. It will also allow you to ease your conscience a little bit, and you will understand that there is a reason for your actions. Even if that reason is horrible or something unforgivable like pure selfishness, evilness, or a lack of compassion for others; being aware of having such traits will help you to work on them. Facing your true flaws will enable you to heal yourself knowingly.
So if you betrayed your ex-partner in some way, ask yourself why. Were you feeling neglected and wanting revenge? Couldn’t you have communicated your needs in a better way? If not, what stopped you? Or were you simply feeling overwhelmed and acting impulsively without thinking about the possible consequences?
Whatever the reason, understanding it is one of the first steps to forgiveness. Apologizing and making amends later will be much easier if you know why you did what you did. So if you’re ready to forgive yourself, start by asking yourself why you did what you did. Once you know the real reason behind your actions, you can start to work on making things right by following the next step after this.
4. Learn from your mistakes:
If you don’t learn from your mistakes, you’ll just keep repeating the same toxic behavior in future relationships. It’s true that you may not be so excited and motivated to move on and date again right now. You even may be thinking: “What’s the point of improving or not making the same mistakes again in the future if what’s done is done and I already ruined a beautiful thing?”.
However, this thinking won’t get you anywhere. Improving your character and learning from your mistake is an important part of life and a big part of growth. It is what will make you a better person and it will enable you to know with confidence that you will do better in the future. This in turn will help you find respect and forgiveness for yourself.
Learning from your mistakes will also give you the strength to see things a little bit clearly from your ex-partner’s perspective and to understand their anger. It will allow you to see things from your ex’s perspective and understand how your actions may have hurt them. This will create compassion and empathy in your heart and will push you to execute the next step easily.
5. Make amends then move on and never look back:
This step will look different for everyone, but it’s important to do something to show that you’re sorry for what you did. This could be anything from writing a letter of apology to sending your ex flowers on their birthday. Make sure you don’t raise their suspicions or have them thinking that you’re doing it to try and get back with them, especially if they’re not ready to forgive you. Whatever you do, make sure it’s coming from a place of genuine remorse.
In the end, the best way to approach the situation is to take a step back and assess the damage that you caused to your ex-partner and other people. Is there anything you can do to repair the relationship or to help them get over the heartache? If not, then it’s time to move on and focus on forgiving yourself. After all, dwelling on the past won’t change what happened. Even if your ex-partner doesn’t forgive you straight away; they will have seen that you’re regretful and someday they’ll let go and stop having any grudges held against you.
Forgiving yourself for ruining your marriage is no easy task. But by taking these five steps, you can start to move on and build a better future for yourself.