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Ask Mom & Spawn: I Cheated on My Husband, Do I Have To Come Clean?

“My husband and I have been together for 5 years, married for 2. He is my best friend and there is nobody else I can imagine spending the rest of my life with but I do wonder sometimes if we have slipped to far into being friends and where the passion is? Or even if it was ever really there. Recently I’ve been feeling very underappreciated, lonely and in a rut (generally and sexually) and attempts to discuss this have led to him being defensive and me feeling more frustrated. I feel like I do everything – maintaining the house, cooking, cleaning, organizing family and friends situations. Meanwhile, he does what he wants and resents the imposition if I ask him to help out. Recently, I slept with an old friend who I historically had a ‘friends with benefits’ situation with (prior to this relationship) and the sex was mind blowing and definitely something I’ve been missing. This is the first and only time I’ve cheated. There is no crossover between this person and hubby and I trust them to keep it to themselves. But now I don’t know what to do? Do I come clean or not. And can I address the issues in my relationship without saying I cheated?” -Steph

@KimFriedmanNYC:  If you want to stay with your husband, you take it to the grave and keep your poonani in your pantsuit in the future. Then go to couples therapy, BUT NEVER EVER TELL HIM YOU CHEATED.

@KateFriedmanSiegel: I don’t agree at all. I think what you’ve done is super unfair, and keeping it secret would be messed up.

@KimFriedmanNYC: I’m telling you, the only thing you’re going to accomplish by confessing the truth is hurting him – it’s selfish to cause him pain just so you don’t have to feel guilty. If it was a one time mistake that you regret and will never do again, then just move forward with your husband and never look back. 

@KateFriedmanSiegel:  Okay, but it sounds like while you don’t feel great about cheating, you’re also feeling emotionally and physically unsatisfied by your husband which is what led you to step outside your marriage in the first place. I don’t mean to come down too hard on you Steph, but what you’ve done is messed up. If you were sure enough that you were irreparably unhappy with your husband, then you should have left him before exploring other men. You’re trying to have it both ways, and you’ve broken the foundational trust that comes with monogamy.

@KimFriedmanNYC: There goes my little prudey pants, Kate. Listen, I’m not saying you did a good thing. I just know how this goes. If you tell him, it’s going to be hard to come back from that. Go to therapy together and talk to a therapist alone too.  BUT DO NOT REVEAL YOUR VAGINAL EXCURSION.

@KateFriedmanSiegel: To the sexual frustration, I’ll say I think every relationship goes through sexual highs and lows, so it’s natural to have lulls. That said, you’re not feeling sexually fulfilled and perhaps that’s something you could express more seriously and ask him to come to therapy with you to talk about. It might help to discuss it in a neutral space to have a constructive conversation and avoid his defensiveness.

@KimFriedmanNYC: Just grab some sex toys and spice it up with a surprise in the bedroom!

@KateFriedmanSiegel: Please stop talking about sex toys. With regard to the frustration with feeling like you handle everything in your lives, I’d suggest that you read this article about emotional labor and possibly pass it along to your husband.

@KimFriedmanNYC: Forget reading. Sex toys, therapy, and keep the cheating to yourself unless you decide to dump him. Lazy with chores is one thing, but lazy in bed is a deal breaker.

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