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Please help, no idea what to do :(

(83 Posts)

A couple of weeks ago I found out - concrete, irrefutable proof found out - that a close friend of mine has been cheating on his wife, regularly sleeping with someone else. He told me that she had some issues in her past that meant she didn't ever want sex and that that part of their relationship was over several years ago. He begged me not to tell her, saying that it was just for sex and he loved her but it was the one part of their relationship missing, blah.

I found out this evening that she's pregnant. Which means the "it's just because we don't have that part in our relationship" was utter bollocks. I feel sick (she is a friend too, though I don't know her as well). I want to call him and have it out with him right now but I know I can't. I'm seeing him tomorrow on a work-related thing and don't think I'll even be able to look at him.

Someone please help me, I don't know what to do sad part of me thinks she should know, because he's done this before and will certainly continue if I don't say something, but I honestly don't know what's for the best sad can someone please tell me what to do? Because I could just weep for her sad

BrittaPerry Sun 10-Mar-13 20:35:00

I definitely definitely got tested for clamydia and HIV as standard tests, and I think something else. Maybe because I was young? It was all done from wee and blood though - my first ever internal examination was when I was in labour. The DDs are 3 and 6 now, so not very long ago.

ImperialBlether Sun 10-Mar-13 16:42:31

What do you mean by "he's done this before"?

ImperialBlether Sun 10-Mar-13 16:40:53

My ex was having an affair while I was pregnant and it went on for eight years until I found out. When I did find out I rang the wife of a friend of his; he said he'd been there at a particular time. She was honest with me and told me he had been there, but had left several hours before coming home and I was really grateful to her.

I spent those eight years thinking I was going out of my mind. I was on various ADs and regularly at the doctor saying I thought I was going mad. When I found out, I didn't need the ADs. My GP did say, "Oh I wondered whether something like that was going on" (I know him quite well) and I did snap "Well I wish to christ you'd said something to me."

If my friends had known and not told me, that would have been a worse betrayal.

OP, it sounds as though the OW has accepted he's slept with his wife and hasn't dumped him for that, so it seems as though the affair will continue.

I think you should have a long conversation with your (male) friend. One with no time limit and no opportunity for him to run off. He needs a reality check. If he ends the affair now, things may become OK at home. However, I don't think anyone can end anyone else's affair; they may agree to end it and then carry on.

It depends whether you want to continue your friendship with this man. If you do tell his wife, the friendship will end.

Can you respect him for behaving like this? Can you believe him if he says it's all over?

If the affair is going to continue, his wife deserves to know. You know that.

HollaAtMeBaby Sun 10-Mar-13 15:52:44

What is the "concrete irrefutable proof" of his infidelity that you found? Is it something that can be sent/shown to the wife? I think you should tell her, especially as you say she is your friend too. I would want to know.

5madthings Sun 10-Mar-13 15:44:40

Actually cat makes a good point that the child will be less affectec if she finds out now and actually if she is in the early stages of pregnancy she may choose not to continue with the pregnancy and then have a clean.break from this cheating arsehole rathet than forever be tied together by a child. Of course she may not but i think she should be afforded the choice.

catlady1 Sun 10-Mar-13 15:00:00

Pregnant women ARE NOT routinely tested for STIs except HIV. I'm pregnant now and there has been no mention of STI testing whatsoever. The urine tests done throughout pregnancy only test for certain specific things (protein, white blood cells, glucose, ketones etc) and the blood tests are for iron levels and antibodies against certain diseases. So it's certainly possible that this man's wife could have picked up an infection which could endanger her baby and knows nothing about it.

Personally, I think if I was the wife I would like to know, especially if I was pregnant by this man. He obviously doesn't feel any shame about what he's doing so it's not going to stop anytime soon, and she will inevitably find out herself eventually, but by then, they'll have a child to consider who will be affected by this a great deal more severely than if they dealt with it now.

IAmNotAMindReader Sun 10-Mar-13 14:39:48

It looks like you may lose both these people as friends no matter what you do so I would do whatever you can live with the most.
He has been lying to you abou this relationship with his wife, I wouldn't be surprised if these sexual problems stem from him being unable to keep it in his pants and his wife paying the consequences in the past to be frank. At best, as far as she knows they are having a normal relationship.

As previously stated not all areas screen routinely for stds, so its not just losing her friendship you have to weigh up but also losing her friendship and the potential risks form stds to her unborn child.

Eurostar Sun 10-Mar-13 14:20:30

undercoverhousewife - what an ill-informed post! Not only, as others have pointed out, that many cash strapped areas do not routinely test for STIs, he could catch one while she is pregnant and, although he claims sexless marriage, if it is not, he can pass it on still. Catching an STI while pregnant is extremely dangerous to the pregnancy and the health of the baby if they are lucky enough for there not to be a miscarriage.

"There is no need to tell your friend "for her health and that of her unborn baby" precisely because she is pg - pregnant women get STI tested anyway. If a test comes back positive then she will work everything out for herself."

Sorry but this really isn't true. I wasn't offered any STI tests, no one ever suggested them, except for HIV. I also didn't have any internals or anything that would have visually picked up on any symptoms (eg venereal warts).

This was in London. It sounds like it varies a lot but there's no way the OP can know for sure what the wife's practice will do.

I have been in this situation before, years ago, although there was no pregnancy/children involved.

At first I did not tell, because I didn't know my cheating friend's partner very well, and I didn't think it was my business.

But I bumped into her one night at a bar and she said some things that gave me an opening, so I said fuck it, and told her everything I knew. She then confronted him and dumped his sorry ass.

We became great friends, and she must have thanked me a gazillion times for telling her (all their other friends knew and no one said anything). Obviously it was a horrible heartache at the time, but it would have been worse to have stayed and continue being cheated on.

I think you should meet up with his wife -- maybe to celebrate the pregnancy? -- and see if she gives you an opening, anything at all, so you can tell her.

Normally I would say stay out of it but I think the health concerns are really valid. They don't test you routinely for STDs in the UK (except for HIV), as far as I know.

5madthings Sat 09-Mar-13 15:30:46

Womem dont always get tested. You are offered sti tests in preg, you dont have to take them.

My takr on this is if my dp had an affair and i found out afyerwardd that my friends knew but hadnt told me i would be furious and hurt, very hurt it would be more betrayal so.i woukd tell.

Are you good friends op?
And he is a twat for involving you in this.

yellowbrickrd Sat 09-Mar-13 15:27:52

Sorry badinage, got your post a bit garbled. blush

The key thing is for the wife to know that her H is unfaithful. What he tells her is not something the OP can control but at least that basic fact will be out and the wife can then make some decisions based on that knowledge.

I don't think it's a 'right' of the wife's to know who else knows and even if she was told I don't know how it would be helpful to her. particularly in the first shock of discovery.

Nothing about the situation is 'ok' but everyone seems to agree that in the wife's position they would want to know and pressing the H to tell her seems the least-worst option.

undercoverhousewife Sat 09-Mar-13 15:23:03

There is no need to tell your friend "for her health and that of her unborn baby" precisely because she is pg - pregnant women get STI tested anyway. If a test comes back positive then she will work everything out for herself.

So, putting that to one side, no, don't tell. The messenger is often shot. You don't know about the state of their relationship. You could make things worse.

But DO talk to the bloke involved and tell him that you expect him to do the honourable thing (and only he knows what that is, really). She may know already. Perhaps she has a secret lover and he is not the father. Perhaps they were having IVF and that made her so moody that the bloke looked elsewhere but now all will be happiness and light. Whatever, sadly you have to bite your tongue.

badinage Sat 09-Mar-13 15:13:29

Look, think logically about this.

The bloke obviously doesn't want out of his marriage if he's had unprotected sex with his wife. There's also no talk from him about wanting to terminate.

If the OP leaves it to him to tell his wife, does anyone really think he'll tell the truth?

More likely, he'll either tell his wife the affair is over when it won't be.

Or he'll realise what he's got to lose and will blame the nasty OW for leading him astray.

Meanwhile, he'll destroy every bit of evidence available to the wife that could expose his lies.

Blu Sat 09-Mar-13 15:09:32

Just following this through - why is it OK for a someone to know about an affair but then force (by ultimatum) her DH to confess, but then also keep the information from the wife that anyone else knew? Does she not also have a right to know that?

I realise that knowledge isn't connected to health, but it is still aomeone else making decisions about what can and can't, should and shouldn't be told about someone's life. So some secrets can be kept to avoid her pain but not oters?

And re the health risk - do not routine pg blood tests pick up any STDs that would affect the baby?

health professionals are not allowed to pass on information from one person to another, even if they know there is a risk.

badinage Sat 09-Mar-13 15:06:35

The 'nasty pair' are the MM and OW who are both involving the OP (who is also a friend of the wife) in their affair.

yellowbrickrd Sat 09-Mar-13 15:03:04

Did I miss something here - why is the wife included in the 'nasty pair' description? What has she done that's nasty or sordid?

I second those who say give your friend the ultimatum - either he tells or you will. That way at least she can hear it from the guilty party and you won't be adding the extra humiliation of wondering how many people knew about it to her misery. That way he can also deal with the fallout.

badinage Sat 09-Mar-13 14:55:22

The thing about this one is that this nasty pair are involving the OP in their sordid little drama and goodness knows who else, so they aren't even being discreet about it. Plus the OW knows about the pregnancy, but doesn't seem to care and believes instead that the most normal thing to do if a man wants to prevent a pregnancy with his wife is to have unprotected sex....confused

So god knows how, but he's managed to avoid being dumped by a terminally stupid OW and it sounds like the affair will carry on, with at least one other person knowing all about it. That's just not fair while the pregnant wife has only a small time window to consider her options. She might want to terminate, she will need to request tests if she intends to carry on with the pregnancy, she might need to change what she's said to her employer about returning to work, especially if she's planning on being a single parent.

targaryen24 Sat 09-Mar-13 14:50:58

In any other case I'd say forget your friendship with him & leave them to it.

But she's pregnant and it's too risky not to.

How will you feel if she catches something nasty and you knew all along?
Or if she ever finds out you knew and didn't tell her?
Wouldn't you want to know/would you prefer to be blind to it?

The health issue is really too important to ignore, pregnancy wise and I'm surprised that hasn't made you tell her already to be honest.

Viviennemary Sat 09-Mar-13 14:46:38

I think you should keep out of it. Difficult thought that will be. And let them sort it out themselves.

badinage Sat 09-Mar-13 14:42:46

No if you were at least with a person when you delivered the news, you could use the right tone and body language to get the message across in a way that words in a note never could. You'd also be able to stay with that person and prevent her from doing something she might regret later, make her some sweet tea to cope with the shock and put your arms around her while she sobbed.

A close friend of mine had PTSD-like flashbacks for months afterwards about the moment she accidentally discovered her husband was having an affair and it was a complete shock. I've often wished I could have been there at that moment to help.

optionalExtras Sat 09-Mar-13 14:17:40

If he is a genuinely good, but sex-starved man who otherwise loves his wife deeply and has "had" to fill the gap with someone else, he will be feeling extremely weighed down by the guilt of deceiving the woman he loves, and behaving strangely. If so, it will all explode soon enough.

If, on the other hand, he is more of a cowardly, self-entitled, lying git who wants to have his cake and eat it, his wife would probably want to know what kind of a man she is married to. Not just for her own self-respect but also for the sake of her unborn child.

She might not thank you for telling her, but she will probably thank you even less for not telling her.

Blu Sat 09-Mar-13 14:08:51

OMG, an anonymous letter would surely add to the poor woman's anguish. I would hate to receive an anonymous letter. It has very unpleasant connotations even if it purports to be in your interests. Cowardly. If you believe that it is your duty to do something, then do it openly.

Selba Sat 09-Mar-13 13:58:56

Maybe the husband is not the father

Flossiechops Sat 09-Mar-13 13:54:49

That's interesting bandinage but the reaction could still be the same if told face to face. I guess the part about answering questions is true. My mum was in this situation when she found out my uncle was cheating on her sister. If that wasn't bad enough my dad was business partners with my uncle. She still told my Aunty but the fall out has been awful.

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