Should You Tell Your Spouse You Cheated?

Every time we make a choice that will have an effect on someone else’s physical, mental, or spiritual health and well-being, we must ask ourselves one crucial question: “Whom does it serve?” Are you seeking redemption, making amends, running away, or focusing on the future? How will your relationship be affected by your confession? What effect will it have on your relationship? Have you got any plans? These are not easy questions, and none of them have easy solutions. It truly boils down to thinking about your underlying motivations and their effects when it comes to revealing a betrayal of trust, like infidelity.

Clearing your conscience

Partners have affairs for a wide variety of reasons. In fact, the research indicates that, at some point or another, over 50% of partners leave their primary relationship. This is true whether you combine all the various types of affairs, from one-night stands to ongoing secondary partnerships. Then, there is the further problem of emotional infidelity to take into account. In the strictest sense, is emotional infidelity an affair or just a diversion? That is a pretty intricate discussion for another post.

Despite all of that, the question remains as to why you feel the need to do so and, once again, for what purpose. It probably benefits you the most, which doesn’t speak well for the outcomes of your confession to your partner because it would probably further strengthen your own selfish reason in their eyes. Therefore, even after the affair has ended, speaking up still helps to stop the deceit, although there may be a stronger reason to do so.

Making up for past mistakes

It is undoubtedly a far more realistic desire to want to mend your relationship if you are self-aware enough to recognize that you have contributed to its compromise than it is to merely want to vent. The question here is whether your self-awareness extends to empathy, enabling you to understand the impact your revelation will have on your partner—whether positive, negative, or neutral.

The exit incident

If you’re trying to stop a relationship but lack the resources to do so and have left the relationship as a result, that speaks more to your character and moral compass than it does to your confession. Putting that aside, you are acting in this situation with an objective (to dissolve the marriage), so it is highly possible that you will succeed in your goals.

Growth after trauma

It’s possible that, when properly analyzed in therapy, the information from an affair can support a relationship’s survival and even growth. The theory that people have affairs because they are trying to fill a void or close a gap in their fundamental relationships with themselves and/or others, whether those relationships are social, emotional, psychological, or sexual, has some merit. Confessing your sin could put you and your partner in an even better position if your goal is to use the revelation of your affair to deconstruct your relationship in a healthy, progressive way and mend the cracks that caused the affair in the first place. Again, for this kind of result, you must be empathic and consider how your spouse might interpret what you say.

Impacting your partner

We keep coming back to the level of social and emotional intelligence you are able to demonstrate when it comes to comprehending your partner and his or her response to your disclosure during this conversation. That doesn’t mean you have to keep it a secret to protect your partner’s feelings. While it might avert an immediate argument, this form of avoidance sows the seeds of slow decay that will probably only worsen with time. It would only serve to further erode an already weakened relationship.

Affecting the relationship

This is another instance where it ceases being about you, just like how your partner would be affected by your admission. How much one is willing to tolerate when there is disagreement in a relationship is one of the main factors for the spouse who is feeling pressured. What are the boundaries, in other words? For instance, what are your tolerance levels for the prospect of relapsing and what does it mean for you in the relationship with the person who struggles with addiction? If your partner has cheated on you, you must determine how strong your resolve is, how strong your ability to mend your relationship, and how much trust your partner is willing to accept from you.

Again, there are no easy solutions, and each circumstance is different. That doesn’t mean you should avoid telling your partner that you cheated. It’s more of a reflection of the fact that humans are more or less illogical, and you alone can foresee how your confession will be received, what your partner will do with it, and what the outcome will be.

In the end, relationships are built on openness and communication. Say what you mean. It might keep your union together.