What is my obligation to my friend whose ex-wife cheated on him?

I tend bar a few afternoons a week and have a friend who usually stops in. We have known each other for about three years and have played on pool league teams several times. We’re about the same age and I consider “Bob” a very good friend.

Over the summer, Bob didn’t come by for a couple of weeks so I sent him an email inviting him by. He replied with an email telling me that he had broken up with his wife of 22 years and that things weren’t good at home. I invited him out to have a drink and talk about it which he agreed to and I heard the whole gory story.

Suffice it to say, she had another boyfriend and wanted out of the marriage. Now here it is four months later, Bob is moving on, having found help both professional and online and is rapidly moving towards finalizing the divorce. The ex largely agreed to all the terms Bob asked for.

Last week I was at the bar and Bob’s ex walked in with a visiting pool team. She is now apparently dating one of the guys on the team (a different person from the summer). She and I had a quick, innocuous conversation and, when she went back to watch the pool, I finished my drink and left.

The next day I was tending bar and Bob came in. I mentioned to him that his wife had been in and told him who she was with. He called her a few choice names, but he knew about the relationship and that it was one of several that the ex was engaged in. At this point he is well past the denial stage.

Bob had his usual two beers before going home to make dinner for the kids (11 and 18 by the way). When shift-change arrived and the night manager came in he told me the story that is the point of the post. The night manager is quite a bit younger than me or Bob, and told me in confidence that one of the security staff had caught Bob’s ex in the men’s room giving her guy a blow job. He’d thrown them out.

“I’m only telling you this, c, because you’re good friends with Bob and have been helping him. The only people who know are you, me and Zach (the security guy), and as far as I’m concerned Bob never has to know.”

My question is whether it is better for Bob to remain ignorant of this detail or to know about it? My thinking is that he is already aware of her actions both before and after they broke up. Telling him does nothing to help him move forward with his life. But then I’ve never been in the sort of long, dishonest relationship he was in. The only reason I might tell him is if she tried to put the kibosh on the agreements relating to the kids, the house, the cars, his pension at the last minute before the divorce goes through.

Is my thinking correct? What are my obligations to my friend?

In Bob’s mind, his ex has probably been doing much worse stuff than this for the past 21 & 1/2 years, so I see no need of sharing this rather pointless if unseemly interlude with someone you consider a good friend.

He knows she’s blowing her new boyfriend. He doesn’t need to the details. Spare his pride. There’s absolutely no reason to tell him. If they were still together then yeah, you’d tell him, but like I said, he already knows she’s gonna be fucking other people.

Keep it to yourself. It’s really none of either of your businesses what she does.

You have no business whatsoever telling him about this. Their relationship is over, it’s not like she’s betraying him.

Since he’s in the process of leaving her and she’s not being froggy about the terms of the divorce. There’s no point of upsetting him any more. Don’t tell him. If I was your friend I think I would prefer it that way.

I see nothing to be gained by passing this information on. I don’t understand why people who learn something always feel compelled to spill the beans. They embarrass everybody and break up friendships. I know people who cheat. I remain friends with both sides. It’s none of my business. If they don’t know, they should and it’s still none of my business.

Why on Earth WOULD you tell him this?!?! It’s none of your business. Even IF they were still together it’s not your place to say anything. It’s really none of Bob’s business, either - plus it’s not like he didn’t already know she’s a tramp.

As far as the divorce settlement goes – ummm … how would Bob knowing his ex-wife gave some guy a hummer in a bathroom be ammo he could use? She’s a grown woman that was engaged in a consensual sexual act with a grown man; she didn’t do anything illegal. Now if she was, say, shooting up in the bathroom with the guy, you might have a reason to tell because drug use would be a safety issue as far as the kids are concerned.

Stay out of it.

Actually, I think she did.

It would not benefit Bob to know about this and you have no reason to tell him. Forget it.

And by the way, Bob’s better off. Seriously, a grown adult in her 40s having sex in a bar bathroom? That’s cool when you’re 20. When you’re in your 40s it’s fucking pathetic.


If he does find out some other way, so what? As stated, it’s nothing he doesn’t already know; it’s a much bigger deal to you now than it would be to him, so just ignore it.

I can’t think of any reason that anyone, especially Bob, needs to know about that. If I were you I’d ask the night manager not to share any more gory details. Icky and pointless.

If she starts giving him shit you can threaten her with exposure of this but keep him out of the loop if you can. People who cheat rarely have compunctions about going back on their word in court either.

Because they are not yet divorced. According to the OP, they are still married. Proof of infidelity could be useful ammo during the settlement.

Not saying he should say anything, but I think people are missing the point of the question.

Sure, tell Bob. I agree with Bear Nenno, it is pertinent information. The future of two young kids is at stake, and call me old fashioned, but IMO someone who likes to suck off people in pub bathrooms and has a new flavor of the week is not realltba suitable parent.

Since you’re looking for advice, I’ll move this to our advice and opinion forum.

twickster, MPSIMS moderator

No, we just happened to read the part where Bob basically got all the terms he wanted in the divorce agreement anyway. Also, the era of a single (hearsay) blowjob in the bathroom actually meaning anything in a divorce settlement are long since gone.

Definitely do not tell him. Not only will it not change the divorce agreement, it will reopen wounds to no purpose.

Leaving your husband to be with your boyfriend is generally considered proof of infidelity, someone claiming to have caught you blowing someone else is an accusation of infidelity.

In most parts of the United States, the police will arrest two or more people caught having sex in the restroom of a commercial business, so yeah what she did was illegal. IMHO Bob probably doesn’t need to know this unless she has a pattern of that sort of behavior, especially if the children are around when she does it. It could be an issue with child custody since the children could be with the mother and male friend sometime when they decide to have one of their little restroom breaks (and end up going to the police station when their mother gets arrested).

Considering that she was in public, in a bar that he frequents, “dating” someone who runs in the same circles as Bob, it sounds like she wants him to find out. I wouldn’t play the role of gossip for her. Let Bob move on, as it sounds like his ex isn’t even worth talking about.