I recently received a question from a woman who was struggling to pick herself (and her marriage) back up after her husband cheated. Interestingly though, a lot of the questions that she was asking me and was concerned with had to do with “the other woman” rather than her husband, herself, or even her marriage. Specifically, she wanted to know “will I ever get the other woman to admit to me that she cheated with my husband?”
Apparently, she knew some of the details about the affair because she had finally forced her husband to give her some of the information that she wanted. But, she wanted information from this woman also. She had tried approaching this woman, writing this woman, and confronting this woman. But, this person continued to avoid the wife, and then when pressed, to deny everything. The wife wanted to know if this other woman was ever going to own up to what she did. And, if she wasn’t, the wife wanted to know what she could do to press the issue.
I had to respond with telling her that essentially, the other woman had no vested interest in leveling with the wife. Other than resentment, revenge, or just flat out meanness, she had no real reason to begin talking. The relationship was seemingly over and she had already shown that she did not care about the wife’s feelings by her actions with another woman’s husband. Besides all of this, I very strongly felt that the wife was focusing her attention in all of the wrong places. I will discuss this more in the following article.
Why It Really Shouldn’t Matter All That Much If The “Other Woman” Admits To The Affair Or Not: I understand wanting to get the details from someone who was directly involved in the situation. And, often, we have a very strong need to look this person in the eye, see just what the big deal about her is, and to force her to allow us to say what we need to say.
However, when you are wanting these things, you often don’t realize that this person already has not shown the attributes that you’re hoping she has. You are hoping that she will be truthful, forthcoming, and straight forward. But, her deception and her actions have shown that her priorities run absolutely counter to this. And, you have no reason to believe that anything about this has any reason to change. Plus as I said, there’s no real incentive at this point for her to begin talking.
And, even if you could magically get her to begin to open up, can you really trust her version of events? Her interest is not in building you up, saving your marriage, or in helping you to put this behind you. Her interest is in painting herself in the best light, defending her actions, and protecting her own self-interests. So, what the two of you want is completely at odds with one another and are not even remotely compatible.
Where You Should Be Getting Your Information About The Affair: If you still have questions or concerns, your husband is the party from whom you should be seeking answers. Admittedly, he has proven himself to be deceitful also. But, you do have a history and bond with him, and he presumably has your best interest and your own well being at heart in a way that she does not.
You want to put yourself in situations where you can move forward and feel better. Exposing yourself to her and her views are not likely to do this. I truly do know that it’s very tempting to hunt her down and to try to get her to admit some things. But, please think twice about this. Overwhelmingly, people tell me that they wish they could take this encounter back because it went so badly. Really, every time you see her, talk to her, follow her, communicate with her, or even think about her, you are re wounding yourself. It is in your best interest to heal and move on. Allowing her to continue on into your life and into your thoughts runs counter to this.
And, frankly, you are giving her more power over you when you follow her around, ask for her information, or try to get her to respond in the way that you want her to. You don’t need or want her pity. You don’t have to rely on her for information. If you suspect that your husband isn’t telling you the whole truth, then be honest with him and tell him that you’re tempted to go seeking answers from the other woman but you would much rather get this from him. Sometimes, you’ll have to experiment with the best way to get this point across and to convince him that you can not really heal or move forward until you are given the information that you need.
With that said, you are better off not dwelling on information that really has no bearing on the present time. Sure, you want to know what happened and how it happened. You need this information so that you can make educated decisions and can address and fix any issues. But, dwelling on what you can’t change and wanting to know the minute details isn’t always in your best interest either. It’s so important to try to always consider what is going to help you and what is going to hurt you further. Because no one wants to deal with this or dwell on it that is longer than necessary.
I know that focusing on the other woman is tempting. But, it truly is far better to focus on yourself and your own well being. This may eventually help the marriage if that is what you want. Although I never would’ve believed this two years ago, my marriage is stronger than ever after my husband’s affair. It took a lot of work, and I had to play the game to win, but it was worth it. Because of all the work, I did on myself, my self-esteem is at an all time high. I no longer worry my husband will cheat again. You can read a very personal story on my blog at http://surviving-the-affair.com/