I want to buy my spouse a gift to show I’m sorry for cheating. What is the best?
I sometimes hear from spouses who want to offer some kind of gift to indicate how sorry they are for cheating or having an affair. And yet, everything they consider seems wrong to them. They want to get the perfect item that shows their sincerity moving forward. But they’re not sure what’s appropriate.
I heard from a husband who said, “I cheated on my wife and she found out. Honestly, I was considering leaving my wife and being with the other woman. But once my wife found out and I saw the pain my actions caused her, I changed my mind. Seeing her so vulnerable reminded me of the woman I first fell in love with and I decided that I owed it to both of us to try to save our marriage. To my surprise, she agreed to give me that opportunity. The fact that That she is willing to take a chance on me again makes me humble. I want to get her something to show her how grateful I am. I asked one of her best friends what she would like and the friend told me that I am on thin ground because my wife is going to reading too much into anything he can choose. Is he right? I don’t know what to do right now.”
What your spouse really wants: While I think it’s touching when one spouse wants to show their love for the other, I agreed with the friend that the wrong choice could make the situation worse. I need to be honest right now. As a spouse who has been cheated on, I can tell you that what your spouse wants is not jewelry or just another trinket. What your spouse really wants is to get the marriage back from him. They want to feel like they can trust you again. They want the reassurance that you still want them and that you won’t cheat on them again. They want to feel your genuine affection. They want you to do whatever it takes to help them heal or recover from this. Frankly, these things would be more meaningful than any trinket could ever be.
Make sure any gift shows your spouse how much you understand and appreciate them: I understand and respect that you want to make a gesture to show your spouse how important they are to you and how committed you are to moving forward. In that case, you should seriously consider it. You don’t want to submit the wrong idea. You don’t want to just give them a “guilt gift” that you didn’t think very deeply about. Many men will think that they will be covered if they only buy expensive jewelry for their wife. I suppose this works for some women, but many wives will assume that you think you can buy your way out of this and that’s not the message you want to send.
It has been my experience and opinion that you will do better if you can find something that will show your spouse that you know them intimately and want to reconnect with them that way. Maybe you can find something that is symbolic of your early relationship. Maybe you can find something that reminds your spouse of your honeymoon, a trip, or a hobby you share that is meaningful to you. Frankly, this is going to be very individual for each woman. Her gift should show her that you know what is important and meaningful to her because she listens and understands.
I will share with you one of the most significant gifts my husband has given me. Shortly after her infidelity, my mother became seriously ill. I had to spend a lot of time in hospitals and this was emotionally draining, although there is no place I would have preferred to be because I wanted to support my mom. My husband called my stepfather and asked him to relieve me for just one or two days. When I returned home, my husband had set up a hammock in our backyard and purchased a book that had been meaningful to us early in our marriage. He wanted me to take some time to enjoy the book in the hammock. This gift was not expensive. But it showed that my husband really understood what would be restorative for me. And he cleared his calendar so we could share some time together in that place. This meant more to me than any piece of jewelry.
Obviously, what is significant to your wife is going to be different from what is significant to me. But if you listen to your heart and find out what it could mean to your spouse, then that’s a gesture that would probably be greatly appreciated.