How to cope if he’s having an affair

Wayne Rooney has been accused of allegedly cheating on his wife Coleen during her pregnancy with prostitute Jennifer Thompson, 21. The allegations will no doubt be a devastating blow to Coleen, who gave birth to the couple’s son Kai in November 2009 after their fairytale 2008 Italian wedding. But could and should Coleen forgive Wayne if the rumours are true? How do you cope after an affair has been revealed and how do you decide what’s best for you?

For Coleen the decision will be an especially tough one as she and Wayne are not only childhood sweethearts, but Wayne admitted to sleeping with a prostitute in 2004, which he described in his autobiography as the biggest regret of his life. The most recent rumours surfaced after Jennifer Thompson was quoted in two Sunday newspapers claiming that she had seven sexual encounters with Wayne over four months last year.

When a partner cheats, there are many things to think about. What about the kids? And does it matter if it was a one-night-stand or a longer affair? It can be devastating to discover that the person you loved and trusted has betrayed you so brutally by having an affair.

So what should you do? We’ve got the expert advice you will need to get you through this difficult time, including how you might feel, whether you should forgive and what will influence the decisions you will need to make.

You’ve just found out he’s having an affair!

Your world has fallen apart. One minute you feel so angry you want to explode, the next you’re sobbing because you think it’s all your fault and you don’t want to lose him.

‘This is completely normal,’ says Relate relationship psychotherapist Paula Hall. ‘Many women are surprised by the way they respond in the early days and weeks after an affair. Your reaction can vary hugely, depending on the circumstances.’

For example, some affairs are a definite signal the relationship is over, others happen in a “moment of weakness”.

‘Just remember, you’ve experienced a major loss, similar to a bereavement,’ says Paula Hall. ‘You’ll be confused and shocked.’