By Katie Lersch: I often hear from wives who can’t get their husbands to be honest about his affair. Sometimes, the husband has admitted to cheating but he’s trying to diminish or downplay the severity of it. Other times, the husband is flat out denying he had an affair even though the wife knows that he did or has evidence to prove it. This can be beyond frustrating for the wives who know part of the truth but who are demanding the whole story. Because they need for their husbands to just be honest, to have some integrity, and to just tell the complete truth.
I recently heard from a wife who said, in part: “my husband admitted to cheating with a coworker, but I have recently learned that it was much more than cheating. It was an affair. The other woman and I have spoken at length about this and they were cheating for about four months. And, according to her, my husband seemed to be pretty serious about her and about their relationship. Not only that, but I’ve found hotel receipts and cell phone records which indicate that this was an ongoing thing. And yet, when I try to talk to my husband about the affair, he insists that it was only a short term fling, that it didn’t mean anything, and that I just need to let it go and move on. Frankly, I can’t and won’t do any of these things until he starts being honest with me. Why can’t he just be honest? Is there anything that I can do to make him tell me the whole truth?” I will try to address these concerns in the following article.
There Are Many Reasons That Husbands Aren’t Honest About The Affair. Here’s A Few: As maddening as this situation is, it really isn’t all that uncommon. Men are often either dishonest or elusive about their affair because they know that if they tell you the whole truth, then you are going to be more angry, will have more questions, and will experience more pain.
I would say that the biggest reasons that men who visit my blog give me for being elusive or dishonest about the affair is that they know if you have all of the facts, you are going to have even more questions to which you are going to demand more answers. They know that what they have to tell you is only going to make you angry and, frankly, is going to make things worse and delay you’re getting over this and moving on.
What they don’t realize though is that most women aren’t just going to give up on their need for the truth. The husband’s refusing to be honest only makes you want to know that much more. Often, their refusal to just show some truthfulness and integrity is what actually makes their situation worse – not their silence. Because many wives will assume the worst anyway.
Another reasons that men are often dishonest is because they are simply ashamed. Now that they are caught, they often play back the series of events in their minds and they’re often are quite embarrassed and ashamed at how they have acted. So, they want to move past this embarrassment and push it down as much as they possibly can. But, if they share this information with you, they suspect that you are going to keep bringing it up, are going to keep demanding answers, and these two things mean that they’ll have to deal with their embarrassment and shame for much longer.
Finally, sometimes they think that their dishonesty is actually protecting you. Sometimes, they worry about what will happen if you know about or try to confront the other woman. Or they know that your digging deeper is going to cause you more pain. So they figure if they can force you into just stopping with all of the questions, your healing and your escape from pain will happen more quickly.
Is There Any Way To Make Your Husband Be Honest About His Affair?: Well, as I see it, there are a few options here. You can either try to collect and confront him with proof (which obviously can cause more conflict.) Or, you can try to convince him that it’s in his own best interest to tell you the truth (and is also the right thing to do.) Another option is to insist that you can and will obtain information on your own whether he likes it or not .
So which strategy do I think is better? Well, that depends on how you want to proceed with your marriage. If you think there’s a possibility of saving your marriage, then you are much better off trying to get his cooperation. If you are going to end your marriage anyway, then there’s really no need to continue to dialog with him when you likely don’t trust his response anyway.
But if you think that somewhere down the line your marriage might just stand a sliver of a chance, then it’s best to try to convince him that he really does want and need to show some honestly and he wants to demonstrate his integrity.
How To Convince Your Husband That He Should Tell You The Truth About His Affair: Although I know that it’s very tempting to have a very strong reaction and to demand answers in a very forceful or threatening way, doing so often won’t get you the answers that you want. So, as challenging as it may be, it’s often to your benefit to convince him that he really does want to work with you. So, I suggested that the next time this husband began making his denials that that the wife knew just aren’t true, she might consider saying something like: “listen, we both know that you’re not being completely honest right now. It’s obvious that you’re either reluctant, scared, or unwilling to tell me the truth. The thing is, I’m very determined to find out the entire truth. I am going to get answers, but I would much rather get them from you. I would much rather hear difficult things from you than from a stranger or from digging on my own. I know that what you tell me might be difficult for me to hear or might even temporarily make things worse. But I can not stress enough that I need to hear it anyway. And I need to hear it from you. In order for me to start to heal, I need to know that you cared enough to be completely honest with me. Are you willing to do that?”
This approach doesn’t always get the exact result that you want immediately or at first. But if you keep at it with a calm attitude and focused determination, many men will realize that there just isn’t another way – especially if they too want to save the marriage.
It took a while before my husband decided that he needed to tell me the complete truth. Eventually, I was able to convince him that this was something that had to happen in order for me to heal. And I did eventually heal so well that our marriage survived and is in fact better than it ever was. If it helps, you can read more of that story on my blog at http://surviving-the-affair.com
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