To Tell or not to Tell: Their Spouse is having an Affair

What if you knew your friend’s spouse was having an affair? Would you tell them? This episode of “Happily Even After” tackles this heart-wrenching dilemma head-on. Host Jen, a seasoned life coach, shares her deeply personal reflections and expert insights on the sensitive topic of revealing infidelity. She emphasizes the critical need for thorough verification before making any decisions and guides you through the best practices for communicating such delicate information. Jen’s thoughtful approach prepares you for the myriad emotional responses that might follow, advocating for empathy, respect, and mindful consideration throughout the process.

As we shift gears, the focus turns to healing and moving forward from betrayal. Jen opens up about her own journey of overcoming trauma, offering a beacon of hope for those navigating similar struggles. With her trauma-informed expertise, she extends an invitation for a free coaching call, setting the stage for your path to recovery and resilience. Don’t forget to subscribe to her email list for more uplifting strategies and follow “Happily Even After Coach” on Instagram and Facebook for continuous inspiration and support. Together, let’s chart a course towards a brighter, happier future beyond the pain of betrayal.

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Welcome to my podcast. Happily, even After. I’m life coach, jen, I’m passionate about helping people recover from betrayal. I rode the intense emotional roller coaster and felt stuck and traumatized for years. It’s the reason I became a trauma-informed certified life coach who helps people like you navigate their post-betrayal world. I have the tools, processes and knowledge to help you not only heal from the betrayal but create a healthy future. Today we begin to help you live happily even after. Hey friends, welcome to today’s episode.

Today I’m going to talk about a topic that I’ve been thinking about, which is, of course, how I choose my topics. Do you tell someone their spouse is having an affair? So if you know someone that is cheating on their spouse, do you tell the spouse, and I will share all of my thoughts and feelings about this, because I definitely have them. But I just, of course, went to the good old internet and just read some different things and articles to see what you know other people thought. So I’m going to just share these and just some ideas, give you something to think about, because if you’ve ever been in this position, it can be a conundrum and you can worry is it the right thing or the wrong thing? And I, of course, don’t love that train of thought, because who knows if it’s right or wrong? You never know until we do it or good or bad, like labeling things like that can be problematic. So, anyways, the first thing is, of course, we want to make sure you know it’s actually cheating, because sometimes something might appear one way and we make lots of assumptions and it’s really not, and so that is important.

Obviously, if you’re going to go and actually tell someone that their spouse is cheating, you want to make sure that they really are and it wasn’t like. You heard from a friend of a friend, a rumor. You didn’t actually see it for yourself or whatever. Before you start accusing people or gossip with mutual friends about it, you just want to make sure it really is actually happening so that you don’t make the problem worse or it could just put you in a difficult situation. Is you want to do it in person, and I guess this could be hard if you didn’t live in this. You know same area and I think with Facebook and social media sometimes we discover things. But if you can, I think you would want to, especially if they are your friend. You want to make sure you break the news in person. So it may not be easy, but I just think that is more respectful.

And then also, if there is cheating, like, don’t just go, like hey, let’s just meet at Starbucks or in a really public place. Because you need to be respectful. If you are hearing this news for yourself, like you don’t want to be in a very public place because you don’t know necessarily how they’re going to react, it could be really high emotions, really intense feelings. So just be mindful of that and be respectful and maybe start off by asking them questions like hey, how’s your relationship going? You know, bring it into conversation and don’t just sit down and blurt it out. Just be mindful about that. If you know they’re like, oh, everything’s so amazing, things are great, you know, just kind of gauge the mood of the relationship, because maybe they don’t feel safe talking to you and I think if you’re not a safe person they don’t want to share. If you haven’t already built that trust up with them, someone’s not going to want to divulge, maybe, things that are going on to their marriage, because they actually may already know that their spouse is cheating and so then having you tell them it just could be complicated, just so get their vibe of what they’re. You know how the conversation is going. But if they’re like actually you know I’m really struggling in my marriage and things are not going great, there’s something going on, I’m not really sure, then maybe that’s your opportunity to say you know, I’m really sorry this is happening, but just so you know, I saw your spouse at a restaurant with another woman and they were definitely not in a business meeting or whatever. And just you know, try to have that conversation with them.

I think it’s important to be direct if you are going to talk and say something, but you also don’t want to be like, hey, I like your sweater and, by the way, your husband’s having an affair. Like you need to make sure, like, just be more gentle and kind and then let’s order hamburgers. So just be sensitive that you are getting ready to drop a bomb on someone and just because it might feel uncomfortable to you, just give them lots of space to process what you’ve told them. Be aware that they may not believe you, they may be mad at you, they may tell you that you’re lying, you’re trying to ruin their marriage or whatever. They may try to blurt out and blame you. But knowing that ahead of time is going to be helpful, because you’re going in with all that, knowing that this is how this could go on.

It’s important, I think, to be prepared to offer support. If you’ve just dropped this bomb on them and you’re like, hey, how can I help? Chances are they don’t really know at that moment how you can help. But just let them know that you’re going to be there and you’re going to do whatever you can. You’re going to show up and realize that there’s going to be a lot of grieving. When you find out your spouse is cheating, grief immediately happens because you’re grieving what you thought your marriage was, and then now the reality of it and people go into denial, anger, lots of things, and they may unintentionally take it out on you, even though of course it’s misdirected, but that’s just what happens. And so if you’re set on telling someone, just be mindful that it may not end well. Just be mindful that it may not end well, even if you know that you are good friends. They just may need some space for your friendship. But I guarantee, as they’re on their healing journey, they’re probably going to be really grateful that you told them.

I think in my experience, actually, no one ever came up to me and said that my spouse was cheating, which is really surprising, actually, and I kind of feel bad about it. But I can understand maybe why now that I’m several years away from that, because definitely people at his office knew he was having an affair and I always thought why wouldn’t they have told me? But I realized because he was their boss, he was their. That’s their job, where they made their money, that was their security. They weren’t going to risk their job or their security to let me know something and in a way, I felt very betrayed by those people as well and hurt. However, I just had to realize like they were doing what was best for them. They weren’t necessarily thinking about me, they weren’t necessarily thinking to me about this and it made me feel very betrayed and hurt, and so I think doing any of those things is very hurtful and it’s not appropriate, right.

If you have a picture of someone spouse and a mistress, girlfriend, whatever you want a fair partner you know be respectful and mindful of that person and their family and either delete it don’t pass it around to everyone in the neighborhood and think that that’s funny or think that that is okay and make it seem like you’re better than them or doing something noble. I don’t know the justification of it, there’s really not any. But just realize that we’re real people. Even my spouse that was having an affair. He’s a real person. He has feelings, everyone involved has feelings, and so be careful with what you share, especially when it comes to someone’s marriage, someone’s family.

So no one told me, and I don’t know how I wish they would. However, I do have a friend and I think for those of us that are in the club that have been cheated on, have experienced an affair or affairs, I would say most of us, and I’m just going to speak for myself. But I’m telling someone, if I find out that and I know 100% that their spouse is having an affair I’m going to have that difficult conversation because that’s what I wish someone would have done for me. I wish that someone would have said hey, jennifer, this is what’s going on. Chances are I already knew that it was happening, but what if I didn’t? What if it just helped me know I wasn’t alone? It helps, I think, clear the shame of the situation to know like, hey, someone actually cares about me enough that they’re willing to tell me this very difficult thing and that’s just me.

I’m sure everyone has a story of something else, but that is just my experience. But I do have a friend that has given me lots of information because we have each other’s back. She has been cheated on and I’ve been cheated on, and so we have each other’s back. We’re going to be able to. She’s going to tell me if she’s heard something or knows something, and so I don’t know. Just something to think about. So I would definitely, if I’m in that situation, if I know for a fact, I’m going to tell the other person. And I actually haven’t had this experience, but I know it’s happening. Unfortunately, people are still having an affair and I think it’s probably because I’ve never been in the workforce. I was always a stay-at-home mom. Not that stay-at-home moms can’t have affairs they definitely do but I just probably haven’t been as exposed in enough situations where I’ve seen this happening. So that’s my thoughts on if you should tell.

Just knowing, learn to be a safe person, just knowing, learn to be a safe person. I think if you are a friend that feels safe, that they know you’re not going to judge or show up in negativity, they’re going to be more likely to hear what you have to say If you know how to be self-regulated. I think it’s so important to know how to regulate your feelings. A lot of times people are like how can you help other women who’ve experienced betrayal? And I think it’s because I’ve learned to self-regulate and my story even though it sounds familiar to me when I hear their story, it’s not my story, so I can separate myself. I can have a lot of compassion for someone else telling me their story because I know how to self-regulate. I don’t get triggered hearing about their husband cheating on them. I only got triggered hearing about my husband cheating on me, and so I’m able to separate that, which I think is a gift that I have.

And so, if you find yourself in this situation, just consider the possibilities and be willing to be wrong about your decision, but also be willing to be right about it. And what if it is your opportunity to help this person in their healing journey? Just know that there’s lots of shame involved. When an affair is happening and so it could be you get blamed for something that you definitely were just trying to help and recognize that. That is just the shame. It’s too painful to feel that shame, the shame of getting cheated on or being the cheater, and so just realize it’s not about you, it’s what’s going on with that person and they need to be healing and figuring out themselves.

Hopefully, this was helpful. If you are struggling in your marriage, if you’re struggling with betrayal and your healing journey, I would love to help you. It’s my passion, it’s what I love to do, so reach out. You can go to lifecoachjencom and sign up for a free coaching call and we can talk about next steps in your healing journey. Thanks so much for listening and have a beautiful day. If you want to learn how to live happily even after, sign up for my email at hello at lifecoachjenwith1ncom. Follow me on Instagram and Facebook at Happily Even After. Coach, let’s work together to create your happily even after.

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Hi, I’m Jennifer

I love helping women and men heal from betrayal. I originally started this podcast with my husband and since my divorce I have taken it solo. I love sharing and talking about the 50/50 of life and providing tools to help you along your path to healing.

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