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DEAR CHRISTINE: Should I tell wife about past affair?


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DEAR CHRISTINE: Should I tell wife about past affair?

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Dear Christine, three years ago I had an affair with a friend of my wife.
I do not know what made me do it, but somehow for about a month I thought I was in love. We both discovered we were not made for each other and we did not want to leave our spouses.
I have never had any desire to have other extra-marital relationships because I think I learnt my lesson then.
I’ve never had the nerve to discuss this with my wife so she still does not know the truth.
This whole issue came up again in my mind because of something a male friend of mine said about his own honesty with his wife. According to him, he tells his wife everything and he thinks this keeps his marriage honest and even adds some excitement for both of them.
I don’t quite understand this, but it has made me wonder if I should confess.
– P.E.
 
Dear P.E.,
I am honestly not in a position to tell you whether or not you should confess to your wife, neither can you base your decision on the relationship your friend has with his wife.
Each person is unique and will relate to situations differently.
There are those who will tell you there is a need to be honest with your wife, but placed in your situation, they would keep such a brief affair a secret. You see, it’s okay to judge and point fingers when the shoe is on the other foot.
While I can give advice, you will have to make the decision on your own.
Here’s my take: There is a great deal of psychological pain related to adultery, especially when a spouse’s friend is involved. Since your experience is long past, I see no reason to “clear your conscience” now.
It would only hurt your wife, and for no reason.
The degree of honesty about this sort of thing depends, of course, upon the situation, but sometimes the guilty partner unconsciously wants to transfer his own feelings of guilt and pain onto his partner.
The friend of yours whom you have mentioned sounds as though he is experimenting with an “open marriage” where both partners agree that almost anything goes as far as sexual urges are concerned. Do you have this kind of relationship with your wife?
This may work for them for a while, and it may even act as a stimulant, but usually, such marriages are short-lived.
– CHRISTINE
 

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