My Cheating Spouse Is Angry That I’m Demanding We Get Tested For Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDS)

By: Katie Lersch: It’s normal and understandable to make requests or even demands after your spouse cheats. Unfortunately, not all of these requests are met with calm agreement. In fact, they can make the cheating spouse angry or defensive. One specific example is the request to get tested for sexually transmitted diseases or STD’s.

A wife might explain: “I am horrified at the fact that I continued to have sex with my husband while he was cheating on me. The only reason that I would ever allow this happen is that I didn’t know. If I had known, I would never have allowed him to touch me. But now I’ve found out that he’s been cheating with a younger woman. I hate to think who or what is in this woman’s sexual past. My husband wants to work things out with me. He even took the initiative to make an appointment with a counselor on his own. He has begged me not to move out and he’s tried to be affectionate to me, but I am not interested in anything that he is offering right now. And I’ve told him that if he even wants me to consider having anything to do with him in the future, I want us both to go and get tested for sexually transmitted diseases. He became very angry about this. He said I’m acting like the other woman is a drug user or something when she’s not. I told him that really, details about her don’t have much to do with this. I then asked him if he used protection and he finally admitted that he did most of the time, but a few times, he did not. I told him that this was really all I needed to know and that we weren’t going any further until we both got tested. He stormed out and has been very chilly toward me since. Am I out of line? I mean, this other woman could be the nicest person in the world, but if she would have unprotected sex with my husband, she could have had unprotected sex with someone else in her past. And that means that I may now be exposed.”

I absolutely do not think you are out of line – at all. You are being smart. Frankly, this is something that people don’t often talk about. And they would rather turn a blind eye to it because the thought of what you’re are really “sharing” with the other person is so unsavory. And scary. And that is unfortunate. But this is your health that we are talking about. You’re right to be careful, cautious, and smart about this.

Your husband may be taking this request as an attempt to punish him, shame him, or make a statement about his judgement regarding the other woman. This is all unfortunate, but it doesn’t negate the fact that he had unprotected sex, then potentially exposed you, and now is still in the dark as to the status of his health.

He doesn’t have to like this. I’m sure it’s not a fun process for either of you. But he should take responsibility for it. He should do what needs to be done.

Ideally, this request might be more effective coming from his counselor. I would suggest offering to go to an appointment with him and then bringing this issue up. I can’t imagine any counselor not immediately agreeing with you that the testing should be done at once.  Frankly, your husband’s anger may well be directed toward himself but being projected onto you.  His counselor should hopefully be able to help him see that.

In the meantime, there is nothing stopping you from going for testing yourself. No, you can’t necessarily control when or if he tests himself. But you can control your own testing. And you can make it clear that you have no intentions of being receptive to him (much less intimate with him) until he moves forward.

If you want to address this before you see the counselor, you might try something like: “I know that this isn’t something that’s pleasant to talk about, but it’s reality. It needs to be done. We are talking about our health. If you care as much as you say, I’d think you’d want to protect and help me in this way. We can’t change what’s in the past, but that doesn’t mean that we have to move forward without all of the information. I’m making an appointment for myself either way. But I’d think you’d want to come along also. Frankly, it would be irresponsible not to. Anytime you have unprotected sex, you need to be tested regardless of who the person is. If the roles were reversed, I’d certainly expect you to want me to get tested and I would agree to do so.”

If he still refuses, even after this conversation and the counseling, it will be up to you as to how you want to handle it. However, regardless of his decision, I’d encourage you to take matters into your own hands as far as your own health is concerned. You can be tested regardless of what he does. And this will likely allow you to feel a greater sense of control.  And, you don’t need to announce to anyone why you are doing this.  There’s nothing weird or out of the ordinary about getting yourself checked out in all areas of your health.

During your healing process, you may find many things that are difficult but necessary.  But every time you face them head on and take control, you gain a little more of your power back.   Don’t doubt yourself here.  Your health is important.  Regardless of what he decides, make no apologies about looking out for yourself and your own health.  You’re welcome to read more about my own healing and health on my blog at

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