Cheating – Do You Tell Your Best Friend?

Posted: March 28, 2015 in Uncategorized
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CheatingTellBestFriend jpg

Previously published on Associated Content / Yahoo Contributor Network October 3, 2009

How important is fidelity in a marriage or relationship? Is it equally important to both partners? Is it important to you?

Statistics are rather arbitrary when it comes to cheating spouses. Due to its deceptiveness, nobody knows for certain how many spouses are cheating on their partners. What everyone seems to know, however, is that cheating destroys – or at least disrupts – marriages.

But how does the knowledge of a friend’s cheating spouse or partner affect you in your relationship with your friend? Would you feel comfortable telling him or her about the betrayal?

Those questions were the premise for the survey results you are about to read. I posed the following question to a number of participants and received some very different (and intriguing) responses:

You discover your best friend’s spouse is cheating on him or her. Do you tell your friend? If yes, why? If no, why?

While the results are not scientifically valid because of the number of participants, of those who responded to the survey, nearly 71% said they would warn their best friend about spousal cheating. Some reasons were pretty straightforward – “I would want to know if it was me.” Other “yes” responses included the following reasons:

Yes, but I would do it delicately, probably starting out with a hypothetical “would you want to know…”

Yes, because I would want to know and a really good friend would be able to find a way to tell me and not make me feel like a fool.

Yes – I would tell her. Reason: My loyalty is to her – not her husband.

Yes. What is the point of keeping secrets? Seriously. Everyone is going to find out sooner or later. Might as well make it sooner and get it over with. Yes, it is going to hurt, which is why people don’t want to do it in the first place, but it is happening, it is real, and you HAVE to deal with it.

Yes. For me personally, my best friends are my brothers and sisters, and brothers and sisters look out for each other. I would find the right time and place, but tell them as soon as possible.

Some yes answers came with conditions:

I probably wouldn’t tell if they were happy together. If I felt they were not happy in the first place, I definitely would tell him or her.

“No” answers accounted for 29% of respondents. Some of those responses included the following:

No, because it would be between the husband and the wife. It’s not my place to say anything.

No, I would not tell her that her husband is cheating. I would not want to cause the breakup of a marriage. Besides, they could possibly stay together and then I would be the one person knowing what a rat her husband is.

No. Most women have an intuitive knowledge that their spouse is cheating. Some don’t want to know. I would drop hints but not come outright and say it.

No. It’s none of my business.

The reason the preceding answers were intriguing was because I followed that question with this one: Your best friend discovers your spouse is cheating on you. Would you want to know?

The results were somewhat similar. 76% responded with a yes and 24% responded with a no. Once again the “Yes, because I would want to know” response surfaced. What follows are some of the other “yes” replies I received:

Yes, definitely, because I would want to investigate and find proof…but then I probably had a feeling about it anyway.

Yes, a good friend would tell me so that I could work on repairing the relationship.

Yes – I would want to know – ugly consequences and all.

Yes. Secrets come out sooner or later. If I know what’s happening, I can deal with it.

Yes, I have been hurt by close friends knowing information and not telling me.

Yes. I do not want to be somebody else’s fool.

Yes, I’d be more upset if I wasn’t told.

Yes. I definitely would want to know if my wife was cheating on me; although, I also would forgive her one time – not more.

Yes, because I’d like to kick his butt.

Some of the no answers included the following reasons:

No, I wouldn’t. I would want to hear it from my husband.

No, I would not want my friend to tell me my husband is cheating. Most wives can figure it out for themselves.

No. My intuition would tell me he is cheating and I would be sticking my head in the sand hoping it or she would go away.

No, it would be too humiliating to be confronted. Sometimes ignorance is bliss.

The way to prevent humiliating your friend by divulging secret and sometimes harmful information is to discuss this particular problem in hypothetical terms. Because no matter how you look at the situation, your friend is the one who would be impacted by the information.

Another way to handle the situation is to bring up the subject in a completely non-threatening environment. Open the discussion by mentioning that if you ever found out about your spouse cheating on you, you would…

How would you respond if you discovered your friend’s spouse was cheating?

  1. Coral says:

    Such an awkward situation. I think it would all depend on the level of the friendship. I have lost friendship because of the honesty in this situation, as you present. Never easy.

    Know that you and your family are in my thoughts. Thank you for sharing info with me. Let’s chat later. Hugs.

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