Books To Read After Being Cheated On

Heartbreak and betrayal can be overwhelming, particularly when it stems from infidelity. In these challenging moments, it can be tough to find solace or make sense of the chaos. This is where literature can offer a comforting hand.

Through the experiences of others, either real or fictional, we can find a guide for our own feelings and actions. This blog post aims to serve as a literary roadmap to navigate the tumultuous terrain of post-infidelity.

We’ll explore books that offer different perspectives – healing, self-love, empowerment, understanding relationships, and hope for future love. With these companions, it’s possible to not just recover, but grow stronger and wiser from the experience.

Let’s embark on this journey together.

Understanding Emotional Pain

Dealing with infidelity can unleash a flurry of intense and often confusing emotions. It’s important to acknowledge these feelings and allow ourselves to fully experience them, even if it’s painful. Books can be a valuable tool in this process, providing insights and experiences that resonate with our own.

It’s Called a Breakup Because It’s Broken by Greg Behrendt and Amiira Ruotola-Behrendt

This candid and humorous book offers a refreshing perspective on the end of a relationship. Behrendt and Ruotola-Behrendt have both been there themselves, and their shared wisdom is like a reassuring chat with a good friend. They acknowledge the pain of a breakup, while also encouraging readers to embrace the opportunity for growth and self-improvement.

Rising Strong by Brené Brown

Brené Brown, a renowned research professor, focuses on the power of vulnerability and courage in overcoming adversities in life, including a breakup. Through her personal and research stories, Brown guides readers to understand that failure is not the end but a stepping stone towards greatness. This book offers valuable insights to help you rise from the ashes of your hurt and betrayal stronger than before.

Books for Self-Love and Self-Care

Infidelity can often leave us questioning our worth and doubting our self-esteem. It’s crucial during this time to turn the care and love we might have given to our partner inward, learning to love and care for ourselves first and foremost. The following books offer a roadmap to embracing self-love and self-care in the aftermath of being cheated on.

Radical Acceptance by Tara Brach

This book by psychologist and meditation teacher Tara Brach is a beacon for those struggling with self-worth. Brach introduces the concept of ‘Radical Acceptance’ – fully embracing ourselves and our experiences, including our pain, without judgment. The author’s warm and compassionate writing, along with practical mindfulness exercises, can guide readers towards a more loving and accepting relationship with themselves.

The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown

Brené Brown’s insightful work invites readers to embrace their imperfections and to realize that they are enough just as they are. She outlines ten guideposts for engaging with the world from a place of worthiness. In the context of a painful breakup, this book can act as a reminder that our worth is not determined by others’ actions, providing a much-needed boost to self-esteem.

Books for Empowerment and Growth

Coming out of the devastation of infidelity can feel like emerging from a storm, battered and bruised. However, this can also be an opportunity to rebuild, stronger and more resilient than before. The following books can serve as stepping stones on this path to personal empowerment and growth.

You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero

In her engaging and empowering book, Jen Sincero serves up bite-sized chapters full of hilarious, inspiring stories, sage advice, and easy exercises to help you discover and unlock your inner badass. This book can be a powerful tool for those seeking to regain their confidence and stride boldly into a new chapter of life after experiencing betrayal.

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

Don Miguel Ruiz offers a powerful code of conduct based on ancient Toltec wisdom that can transform our lives into an experience of freedom, happiness, and love. The four agreements — be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, always do your best — serve as principles to practice in order to create love and happiness in your life. This book can provide invaluable guidance for personal growth, especially in the aftermath of infidelity, teaching readers to reclaim their personal power and find peace.

Books for Understanding Relationships and Infidelity

Understanding the intricacies of relationships and infidelity can provide clarity and perspective during the healing process. These books delve into the complexities of love, trust, and betrayal, helping you make sense of what happened and, potentially, how to move forward.

After the Affair by Janis A. Spring

In this compassionate book, Dr. Janis A. Spring, a clinical psychologist and expert in infidelity, offers advice and practical exercises for those dealing with the aftermath of betrayal. She navigates the tumultuous seas of emotions after an affair and provides guidance for both the betrayed partner and the unfaithful one. This book can be a valuable tool for understanding and coping with the complexities of infidelity.

The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity by Esther Perel

Esteemed couples therapist Esther Perel takes a bold and provocative look at infidelity, arguing for a more nuanced understanding. Drawing from her extensive clinical experience, Perel explores the motives and meanings of affairs, breaking away from traditional notions of betrayal. While this book may challenge some preconceived ideas about infidelity, it can provide a new perspective and deepen understanding, potentially aiding the healing process.

Books for Hope and Future Love

While recovering from infidelity can be a lengthy and challenging process, it’s important to remember that there is hope for future love and relationships. These books provide insights and tools for building and maintaining healthy, satisfying relationships.

The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman

Gary Chapman’s insightful book posits that people express and receive love in five different ways, known as love languages: words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch. Understanding these love languages can enhance communication and foster a deeper emotional connection, crucial components of any relationship. While this book might not directly address infidelity, the insights it provides can be beneficial when you’re ready to embark on a new relationship journey.

Attached by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller

‘Attached’ presents the science of adult attachment theory and how it impacts our relationships. Authors Levine and Heller outline three attachment styles – anxious, avoidant, and secure – and explain how these dynamics can influence our romantic relationships. This book can be particularly helpful for those looking to understand past relationship patterns and create healthier bonds in the future.

Additional Recommendations

Navigating through the aftermath of infidelity can be a daunting task. Here are ten more insightful reads that can provide guidance, comfort, and understanding during this challenging time.

The Journey from Abandonment to Healing by Susan Anderson

Anderson’s book offers a comprehensive guide to overcoming feelings of abandonment, including those spurred by infidelity. With her 5-step model, readers can navigate through their pain and emerge with a renewed sense of self.

Getting Past Your Breakup by Susan J. Elliott

Elliott offers practical advice for dealing with the end of a relationship, focusing on self-care, setting boundaries, and working through grief. It’s an invaluable tool for those looking to make positive changes after a painful breakup.

Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life by Tracy Schorn

Written with humor and honesty, Schorn’s book is a breath of fresh air for those who’ve experienced infidelity. It offers practical advice and reassurance, reminding readers that it’s okay to prioritize their own wellbeing and happiness.

How Can I Forgive You? by Janis A. Spring

In this book, Spring navigates the delicate path of forgiveness after betrayal. She challenges the notion that forgiveness is the only route to peace, offering alternatives for those who aren’t ready or able to forgive.

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

Tolle’s spiritual guidebook aims to bring readers into the present moment, away from past regrets and future anxieties. It can provide comfort and perspective to those struggling with painful memories of infidelity.

This Is Me Letting You Go by Heidi Priebe

Priebe’s book is a tender collection of essays on the art of letting go. It can help readers find closure and move forward after the end of a relationship.

Healing Your Emotional Self by Beverly Engel

Engel’s book guides readers on a path to healthier self-esteem, exploring how past trauma can impact our self-image. It can be particularly helpful for those dealing with self-doubt after infidelity.

Codependent No More by Melody Beattie

Beattie’s seminal work explores the dynamics of codependency, which can often come to light after an experience of infidelity. The book offers tools to identify and break free from unhealthy relationship patterns.

When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chödrön

Chödrön’s book presents a Buddhist approach to dealing with pain and crisis. Its teachings on mindfulness and compassion can be a comfort to those grappling with the hurt of infidelity.

Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself by Kristin Neff

Neff’s book encourages readers to treat themselves with the same kindness they would extend to a good friend. This concept of self-compassion can be healing for those who’ve experienced betrayal.


The journey of healing from infidelity is deeply personal and unique to each individual. The pain may seem insurmountable at times, but remember that it’s okay to grieve and it’s okay to heal at your own pace. The books listed above can be faithful companions along this journey, each offering their own wisdom and comfort.

From understanding the emotional pain, embracing self-love, seeking empowerment, understanding relationships, to finding hope for future love, these books serve as guides in navigating this complex terrain. Ultimately, the goal is not just to survive the aftermath of being cheated on, but to thrive and emerge stronger, wiser, and more compassionate towards oneself.

Remember, it’s not just about moving on but growing through the experience. It’s okay to seek help and reach out, whether through books, therapy, or supportive communities. You are not alone in this journey. Take one day at a time, one page at a time.

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