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Being cheated on sucks. It’s as simple as that – but the feelings that come with it are hardly ever simple. You feel betrayed, angry, embarrassed and completely heartbroken. It can make you question everything about yourself, your relationship and your life. But we’re here to tell you that it’s going to be okay – not immediately, but definitely soon. If you’ve found yourself in this situation, our handy tips will help you cope.

Remember: you are not to blame

No matter what’s gone down, it’s never your fault that someone cheated on you. People do hurtful things for a whole bunch of reasons – and maybe your partner can explain theirs – but those reasons have nothing to do with you. It can be really hard to remember this, but it’s super-important. So, we’ll say it again: you are not to blame.

Accept that things are going to suck for a while

You’ve had a rubbish thing happen to you – it’s going to take time to heal. Breathe, and accept that things are going to suck for a while. This doesn’t mean you have to like it, or that you agree with it. It just means that you’re not going to waste time fighting something you can’t change. Instead, focus on mending your heart.

Put yourself first

The most important person in this situation is YOU, so take care of yourself. Eat your favourite foods, watch your favourite movies or indulge in your favourite activities. Try to keep yourself from getting hurt any more than you already are. Your heart is probably a bit bruised and it doesn’t need to cop any more bad treatment.

Try to keep your cool

It’s tempting to lose your chops a bit and start firing off angry texts, but take a second to chill before you do anything. It’s definitely not worth getting yourself in trouble by messing with anyone. Leave the dramatic public displays of rage for the movies; instead, let off steam at the gym, on a jog or dancing to a killer playlist.

Don’t make decisions out of fear

There’s no right choice when it comes to staying with or leaving someone who’s cheated on you – you’ve got to do what feels right for your heart. But don’t let fear make the decision for you. It’s not a good idea to stay with someone because you’re scared to be single, or to leave someone you love because you’re afraid they’ll hurt you again. Take as much time out as you need to make the choice that feels right for you.

Surround yourself with your squad

You need your best gang around you when you’re trying to deal with a broken heart. Focus on people who’ve always had your back, who’ll listen to the full story and support you in whatever you decide to do next.

Take a mini-break from socials

It can be tempting to put your FBI skills to the test and trawl through social media. But, just don’t do it. Not only that, give social media a break for a little while. You don’t have to prove you’re still living your #bestlife, and all that FOMO isn’t what you need right now.

Ask for (professional) help if you need it

Professional psychologists recommend talking to a doctor as an important part of moving on from cheating. Whether you do it together with your partner or solo, getting an expert opinion from someone outside the situation can be a game-changer for healing.

Don’t jump to conclusions

Maybe you glimpsed a text message on your partner’s phone, or heard from a friend that they were up to something at the club. If you’re getting your information secondhand, it’s probably not the whole truth – no matter how much you trust the source. Gossip has never made any situation better. If you’re concerned about something, ask your partner directly before you jump to any conclusions. Having all the right intel will set you up to handle the situation like a boss.

What can I do now?