Friend's partner cheating - would you tell him/her?

Croatia (Hrvatska)
February 4, 2010 3:10am CST
Recently I have witnessed something and implications are really bothering me: after some suspicion I learned that my friend's housband is cheating on her. She is a good, long time friend of my wife and me - he is her housband and we met him through her. They have three children and have had an (apparently) normal marriage for some years now. I learned a few things about him through some other people, not nice things (legal) but you always think people can change. I had suspected for some time now that he was not completely honest in their marriage, and then recently I had proof: the other woman talked too much on one occasion and the conclusion is that they have had an affair for the last two years. Now my dilemma is: tell his wife something or just sit and pretend all is fine? My wife is going crazy, does not want to see him but also does not know what to do ... it is really getting awkward since our friend is getting mad at us for avoiding them lately. Understandable, but how can you just sit and smile pretending you know nothing? We tried being subtle about it, giving some hints, trying to lead her to make a conclusion on her own - but the problem is that she sees it as an attack on her housband ... she's just blinded by love I guess, which is also understandable. What would you do? Keep quiet, feel terrible about it and risk causing a lot of pain to someone you care about in the future (the truth comes out eventually...) or tell her right away, no gloves, and risk putting a friendship on the line? Or try talking to him and making him deal with it? I tried putting myself in her shoes and it is a terrible ordeal: not sure if it's worse to know or not to...
4 responses
@allknowing (55063)
• India
4 Feb 10
I don't think you or your wife are your friend's keepers. If she has no problem so let it be. An individual's life is his or her own and we are no one to judge them or feel awkward about their behaviour. I would never bother what my friend did or did not do as long as that behaviour does not interfere with my friendship with her.
• Croatia (Hrvatska)
4 Feb 10
I understand your point of view, but don't you think it's a little selfish? - as long as things are all right between us, I don't care about what's going on with you - I don't think that's judging, it's just a question of making the right decision (as a friend, relative ...) so that you don't get that "why didn't anyone tell me" speech sometime in the future. I think it would be a terrible thing to sit at a table where everyone knows except the person in question ... and pretend that everything is all right.
@allknowing (55063)
• India
5 Feb 10
I still maintain my stand since you say you have already thrown hints and what you have seen must have been seen by others as well. This is a delicate issue and very personal and getting into it may or may not help. There is no question of being selfish here but just a thought that it might help no one but may make matters worse. What we do not know here is that the wife concerned may already be knowing about it and may have even confronted her husband and would not want anyone else to know including you. So my suggestion is you should pretend and get on with life. No. You are not being selfish. At the most you might like to alert the husband!
@sirnose (2440)
• United States
4 Feb 10
The best thing to do is tend to your own business in most situations such as this when spouses start cheating it means that their marriage is not going as good as they pretends it to be. I know it’s hard but its better not to get involve in someone else’s problems regardless how you feel about them. See us human are always looking for gossip, if you would have been trying to improve your own lot in life you would not know of her husband's affair. Leave it where you found it on the "Grapevine".
• Croatia (Hrvatska)
5 Feb 10
No one went looking for gossip or tried finding someone else's problems in order to solve them ... someone involved in the affair talked too much. Was it planned or not? I don't know, honestly it could have been both. Maybe the lover wants to become the wife? It happens all the time. If you knew someone was going into some sort of danger, would you keep quiet because it's not of your concern? I think we'd live in a better place if we cared about other people as much as we care about ourselves.
• United Arab Emirates
8 Feb 10
It's quite pitiful but i think its bad and whenever you are with her and watch her talk about her husband doing all things right, and always been there, caring and so on, you jus feel guilt cover you all up and you feel like daying then i want you to just learn back but if you could confront the husband and let him know you know he is cheating on your friend his wife...or you will tell her
@joy4you (641)
• India
6 Feb 10
How about trying to talk to the cheating husband as a friend and try to make him see his mistake and talk him out of it, If he is still not interested in mending his ways then his wife will realize her mistake the hard way as such things can not be hidden for ever. When taling to the husbands wie tell her what is happening, preferably with some proof and tell her the decision is hers to decide her future and leave it at that and let her decide, help her only if she asks for help. Either she does something about it or sooner or later she will have to face the consequences. You can not help someone who does not want to be helped and in such cases you appear to be the villain whereas you were just trying to help.