How do you tell a friend about unfaithful ex

From deciding whether revealing hard truths to a close friend is worth it to other vexing issues of a personal nature, reader dilemmas and big questions are answered by clinical psychologist Jo Lamble.

Reader dilemma:

On a night out a few weeks ago, I saw my best friend’s husband in a bar kissing a woman who was definitely not my friend. It completely shocked me because they’re what you’d call “the perfect couple”.

I know I’d want to be told if that happened to me, but it’s not such a black-and-white decision when it comes to telling her what I saw.

She’s often told me that he’s “her life” and if anything ever happened to them, she’d give up, so I’m not sure if I should say anything at all. What should I do?

Jo’s advice:

Yes, you definitely need to say something, but the question is: to whom?

I often think it’s better to approach the person who’s cheating and let them know what you’ve seen or heard. Contact your friend’s husband and tell him you’re very worried about how she’s going to react to the fact he’s been unfaithful, and you’d prefer the news came from him.

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He’s done the wrong thing, so he should be the one to confront the situation. If he flatly refuses and asks you to stay silent, tell him you can’t do that – she deserves to know the truth and you wouldn’t be a good friend if you kept his secret. Then you’ll have the awful task of telling her what you’ve seen.

Be prepared for a strong reaction. You may even be attacked for telling her, but it will be better than the reaction you’d get if she found out down the track.

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