By: Katie Lersch: Often, when you suspect your spouse of cheating, you feel a horrible sense of dread. You worry about how awful the confrontation is going to be. And you fear that your spouse is going to deny it, leaving you unsure as to how to get him to confess. There are times, however, when the whole thing doesn’t go as planned. And when this happens, you can be left wondering what it all means. One example is when your spouse confesses, on his own, almost immediately.
Someone might say: “I actually strongly suspected that my husband was going to cheat on me before it even happened. I knew that he had friended an old girlfriend on facebook. I knew that she had almost been pursuing him online – sending emails and photos. I told my husband I did not want him talking to her anymore. I also knew that he was going to see her on his class reunion. To be fair, he invited me to go and I was going to accompany him. However, I had a family emergency that kept me from going. Very stupidly, I told him that it would be OK if he went anyway, as long as he kept to his male friends and did not interact with the old girlfriend. He assured me that he would and told me that he would call and text several times to check in. Well, he never called or checked in. And he ignored me when I texted and tried to call him. The reunion was out of town. So I tried to call his hotel pretty much all night long. He never picked up. So I had a pretty good suspicion about what happened. And I dreaded having to confront him about this and have him deny it. But as soon as he got home, he walked in the door, dropped his bag, and started to cry. He told me that he had been with the other woman and he begged me to forgive him. He didn’t even try to deny it. He admitted it immediately. Is there any significance to this? Why would a man admit it so readily? Is this common?”
I would not call it common, at least in my perception. But it is not as if it never happens. Here are things which I believe may contribute to a man confessing immediately.
Guilt: Many people who I hear from that are having an affair are consumed by guilt and are looking for relief from it. He may have told you to try to release some of that guilt.
Prior Knowledge: Quite frankly, he likely knew that you already had your suspicions. It was almost obvious what might have happened. So, he may have known that he was going to need to come up with a great story in order to explain away what happened. And perhaps he knew that it just wasn’t worth the effort to lie. Because you were going to doubt him anyway.
Wanting To Do The Right Thing: It’s quite possible that your husband respects you too much to actually look you in the eye and lie to you. It’s also quite possible that he feels a great deal of regret and now wants to do the right thing. The start of that is telling the truth.
Hoping That Being Honest Matters: Once the mistake has been made and the person who cheated comes back to reality, they’re often overwhelmed with the knowledge that they have put their marriage at risk. Some people who have cheated will literally run toward home and quickly utter all sorts of apologies. The hope behind this is that they want to get on the road to reconciliation right away. So if confessing is a way to jump start this process, so be it. Also, many are hoping that confessing and being honest even when they could have lied before will at least matter a little bit to you. They may well hope that it is better for them to confess than for them to lie and then to be caught in that same lie later.
I don’t have any idea how you feel about any of this reasoning or if it matters to you. But in terms of saving your marriage (assuming that you want this,) I do feel that a spouse confessing immediately is a positive sign. It shows that he isn’t trying to justify his behavior and that he knows he is wrong. It shows an immediate willingness to be truthful, even if it causes pain.
Many couples struggle greatly because the cheating spouse never truly comes clean. He may give his spouse tiny bits of the truth, but he always holds a little back and this makes it very hard to heal. The fact that your spouse is willing to tell everything so quickly is a good sign, but of course there would be rehabilitation and lots of work ahead if you chose to save your marriage. And you may not know the answer to that immediately, which is OK. If he knows that he is wrong, then he will likely also know that he has to be patient while you decide what you want to do.
I didn’t know right away that I wanted to save my marriage. In fact, I was leaning toward letting it go. But after a while, I started to see things a little differently. I took my sweet time deciding and, to his credit, my husband was very patient. There’s more at http://surviving-the-affair.com
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