Coming clean to spouse

Do people involved in affairs ever come clean to their spouses voluntarily? I mean, without some confrontation or major discovery like cell phone records?

Guilt sometimes takes over.

The best, most considered advice I’ve ever heard on the matter is that if it won’t ever have a consequence (STD, child, crazy calls from spurned partner) and will never affect the spouse’s life, don’t bring it up. If it does come up in a plausible way - one likely to leave lingering doubts no matter what finely-woven tale you tell - don’t deny it.

And in general, as old-school as this might sound… don’t fucking do it again. Unless you’re in the rare group of those with a truly open or trusting relationship, sex with outside partners is just juggling the fragile future of at least two people, one or more of whom don’t have a say, for fleeting pleasure. Stupid, selfish and pointless.

No good can come from it.

Excellent advice from Barbarian, as he says if questioned be honest but if it is over with no lingering consequences just learn from your mistake. A lot of marriages including mine never recovered from this.

My ex husband confessed during a conversation that had nothing to do with it. It wasn’t his first infidelity, but it was his last. Well, with me anyway, he married the bint he was boinking, and has gone of to do her niece and her daughter. Karma, baby. :cool:

wrong, and I plead the fifth.

I know a former couple. They weren’t actually married, but had lived together for a number of years. He had a weekend fling and then, conscience-stricken, he told her about it. As I heard the story, she picked herself up and walked out, never glancing back.

Why would I write out my own death warrant? My wife has made it quite clear what the consequences would be. Fortunately, I have no indiscretions to hide.

Thanks…I’m not actually the cheating spouse. I am divorced and became involved with an ex from long ago who sold me on a story about how his marriage was on the rocks and ending. Given the long distance, I couldn’t really tell if his story was reality or not, and I was predisposed to believe him. After a year of meeting up in various cities he confides that his marriage isn’t over or even on the rocks; that he’d fallen for me and didn’t know how to end his marriage.

I did threaten to tell his wife and he allegedly told her. But, thinking over the big story, I don’t believe that she knows anything. I have ended things and he periodically calls and professes his love, again claiming he is ending things…but nothing ever really changes. It is heartbreaking for me, and it would be heartbreaking for the wife if she knew the real story.

So…I was just wondering if guilt ever motivated stray spouses to “out” themselves, or if it was only when they were caught in some way.

Been there, on the opposite polarity. It’s incredibly frustrating to have been a fool and/or find out you’ve been strung along.

Probably lots of special cases but in general confessing is trading your guilt for someone else’s pain.

Finding out you were cheated on hurts but it is much preferable than continuing to live your life with someone who doesn’t exist.

What do you mean by this?

I think people confess out of their own guilt but I imagine that the reason for their confession is because they are truly sorry and want to move forward in an honestly relationship.

The fact that this guy is married and wants to have an affair is not right. You should not take comfort in the fact that he confessed to the affair as it seems he may have done it to avoid you telling the wife and wanted to get in first with an “I’m so sorry, it was the biggest mistake of my life and it will never happen again”

You have unwillingly found yourself in an awful situation and the best thing to hope for is that he leaves his wife for some other reason (perhaps whatever reason caused him to stray from her in the first place) and then, after several months, gets in contract with you and expresses a desire to have a legitimate relationship with you and essentially start again without the lies.

Yep - assuming it was a one time mistake and will have no consequences it’s a dick move.

Now if you’re continually cheating then you should come clean and tell your partner this is just the way it’s gonna be, or you should leave the relationship.

I mean keeping your spouse in the dark about your unfaithfulness is keeping them in the dark about who you really are, they are not in a relationship with you but with the person you are pretending to be.

Yes, I agree.

Well the first Mrs. Zebra tearfully confessed. (at like 4 AM so I was asleep when it started) She vowed never to do that again and I said fine. Then she did it again and again and finally just up and moved to Las Vegas.

Yes. If they never know, it can never hurt them. The pain, guilt and promise not to stray again are YOUR burden.

I pit the notion that a spouse “must know” every detail about you, your past life and your mistakes. There are some things better left unsaid.

True, relationships are not depositions. People are entitled to their pasts and their past mistakes.

But if a spouse is having an ongoing deception, or has repeatedly betrayed their partner in the past, that’s information the partner really needs to know, so they can make an informed decision about what to do.