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Telling your partner about your affair might be the hardest conversation of your life. And unfortunately, it could end your relationship. However, you are probably doing the best thing by being truthful. It’s hard to be in a relationship when you are covering up a lie or feeling guilty. Before you begin, it’s important to know what you’d like the outcome to be. Set the stage so that you can have the most productive conversation possible. Tell the entire truth, not just part of it, and answer all your partners’ questions. And finally, both their reactions and your reactions to their reactions are important. Don’t get defensive. Instead, be apologetic and mean it. Hopefully, your relationship can recover from this and be all the stronger afterward.

Telling Your Partner About Your Affair: The Uncomfortable Conversation

Before You Begin

Before you begin telling your partner about your affair, you need to realize that this might end the relationship. While some partners might be able to move through infidelity, others won’t be able or willing to. Before you have the conversation, decide if you want the relationship to work out. If you do, prepare some ideas for how to build trust back. For example, you could suggest couples counseling.

Setting the Stage

Another thing to do before you begin telling your partner about your affair is to set the stage. You’ll want to make sure that you have plenty of time to talk it out. It’s also important to choose a place that is private where you won’t be overheard and where your partner can display emotions without being seen. Don’t have this conversation at a crowded restaurant. Make sure that it’s distraction-free and that you aren’t under a tight schedule.

Tell the Whole Truth

When you begin telling your partner about your affair, it can be tempting to conceal parts of the truth. For example, perhaps there was more than one occasion of cheating but you only want to come clean about one. This is not a good idea because your partner could find out that you only revealed part of the truth and you will lose any trust that you’ve gained. It could wind up hurting them even more. As difficult as it is tell the whole truth so that you aren’t adding more to the story later on.

The Reactions

Finally, when telling your partner about your affair, keep your reactions in check. They might react with anger, but don’t get defensive. After all, it was you who cheated. Give them space to feel their feelings and experience whatever emotions they need to experience. It’s important to apologize but to do it sincerely. Try to put yourself into their shoes and decide how hurt you would feel in their situation.

Telling your partner about your affair might be an incredibly difficult conversation, but it’s one that probably needs to be had. Carrying the guilt of an affair can destroy a relationship. As can the lies that you might need to build to cover up the truth. It’s better just to come clean about what happened. Go into it knowing that your partner might not ever recover from this. Make sure you pick a private place to have the conversation when you have plenty of time. Tell the whole truth and answer their questions, even if they make you uncomfortable. And finally, don’t get defensive, but instead, be sincerely apologetic. Hopefully, you and your partner can move forward. It’s a great idea to have some ideas handy about how you’d like to make your relationship stronger than ever.