To tell or not to tell…. why don’t people speak up?

by Rod Smith

“I’m looking for a perspective regarding a spouse who has been cheated on when family, friends, and coworkers were aware of the affair. I’d like to know if the cheated on spouse would have wanted to be told (or told sooner) about the affair. I read so much about people saying, ‘Do not tell the spouse.’ If I were being cheated on, I would want to know. When the spouse does find out about the affair and that other knew, he or she has to deal with the heartbreak of the affair and the betrayal of others. I just don’t grasp the majority’s mentality to turn their back on this situation. If the sin was embezzlement, the majority would say tell all. Why do the rules change when it comes to affairs?”

Call me...

Call me...

Suspicions of affairs, observing betrayal, knowing someone is being cheated are all scary matters that are much easier to avoid than to face. Besides, seeing it occur to another, means I have to face its possibility of occurring in my own life! Denial of it occurring at all, or the avoiding its exposure to the victim, is much easier! Your observation goes to the heart of a profoundly difficult human issue. Cheating makes everyone uncomfortable, even those who observe it from some distance.

3 Comments to “To tell or not to tell…. why don’t people speak up?”

  1. Sadly, I am quite the expert on this subject. For a number of years I practiced the life of a serial adulterer.

    I was misreable in my marrage, drinking, doing drugs… just an all round dog.

    Although my wife wasn’t perfect I can not blame her for any of the actiions I freely chose to participate in.

    I never understood why any of her friends didn’t say anything to her. Heck I hit on most of them and was even “successful” with a few.

    I feel real wierd writing about this…

    I think one thing that would have opened my eyes is if some of the guys I knew would have called me on the carpet about it.

    If anyone knows about an affair and they don’t say anything about it, they are NOT a friend. A true friend won’t consider their well being they will think of the one the call friend.

    In most cases I don’t think you can go up to the wife/husband and say “I thought you should know that your spouse is having an affair.”

    Maybe go about it like you were telling story about someone you know who is having an affair and you don’t know if you should tell the wife or not. “What would you do.” Then follow their lead.

    I am no trained professional but I’ve lived in the trenches enough to know what may have a better chance of success and what won’t.

    …..man now I feel dirty…

    Fortunately my wife and I have been able to work through all of our past issues and after over 34 years of marriage our relationshi is better than it has been in years and years.

    Marriage isn’t 50 – 50. Marriage is 100 – 100!

  2. Kudos to your wife mssc54, I hope you cherish her everyday because she clearly will never forget the pain of your distruction. People don’t tell because they often engage in the same activity and scum that cheat usally associate with more scum that cheat, so they hold each others secret to form a “I GOT SOMETHING ON YOU’ relationship. I’ve seen it, I lived it, my sister-in-law and my husband are best friends, habitial cheaters, drinkers, and liars. They have mastered the art of turning the table on the spouse in a group to take the attention from themselves and minimize the cheated on spouses credability.

  3. Four years ago I told a friend who I had known since high school that her husband was visiting gay beats, he had been witnessed by quite a few mutual friends, no-one was willing to tell her. After I told her no-one else backed me up, they all denied any knowledge of it. The consequence has been that after 15 years of friendship she hasn’t spoken to me for the past 4 years and everyone else went on as normal. I find it disgusting that people are not honest with their friends and I put it down to cowardice. I am no longer friends with this person but I do not believe I would have been a true friend if I had not told her – it was a lose-lose situation. At times I have regretted saying anything only because it has caused quite a bit of inconvenience for me not because I don’t know that it was the right thing to do. Basically most people are very weak unfortunately they just want to keep the peace.

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