Every relationship goes through rough patches, with many people finding ways to forgive each other and forgot as they grow old alongside one another. Now, one man has asked for advice with a marital problem, questioning whether or not he should confront his wife over an affair she had two decades ago.
The unnamed 66-year-old took to internet forum Reddit to explain that although he’s always known his wife cheated on him, he’s never brought it up with her. To make matters worse, the man is on his deathbed and wants to know whether he should bring up the affair with his 64-year-old wife before he passes away.
“I[66M] am dying,” he wrote. “Should I let my wife[64F] know that I am aware of the fact she had an affair some 20 years ago?”
The man explained that following their differences in the past and his wife’s affair, both worked through their problems and seeing his wife’s dedication to the marriage after she cheated was what made him forget about her infidelities in the first place.
“We put in a lot of work and just seeing her dedication to fixing our marriage is what made me forget about her affair in the first place,” he wrote. “She remained dedicated to me and our family for another 20 years. I am sure of that.”
He pondered whether he should write his wife a letter detailing everything or to speak to her in person. Others on Reddit had plenty to say about the topic and were quick to offer the man advice, with many suggesting it’d be the right thing for the man to explain to his wife that he has known about her infidelity all along.
“I think telling her would remove a large burden from her,” one person wrote. “I would imagine she is torn between doing what she thinks is right, and what is best for you. So remove the burden from her so she won’t have that weight once you are gone.
“Let her break down about this while you are still alive to reassure her, instead of afterwards when it could potentially never ease her burden.”
Another person said they thought the wife was going through a similar ordeal and that she would be feeling guilty.
“She’s probably having a similar situation as you are, asking herself whether or not she should tell you,” they wrote. “She probably won’t tell you before you go, because she doesn’t want that to be the last thing you see in her before you go, so that means she’ll probably be living with the guilt her whole life. I think you should tell her so that she knows you forgive her and that you’ll part this world without any secrets.”
A third simply added: “In situations like these it is always best to air everything out before the end. I think you should tell her.”
Another found himself in a similar situation and said that he felt guilty after his wife died suddenly and he hadn’t been honest about mistakes he’d made in the past. Still, he said he was at peace that his wife lived her final days not knowing what really happened early on in the relationship.
In a similar story, a heartbroken wife recently wrote to The Telegraph’s Agony Uncle column with Graham Norton to explain how heartbroken she was when her dying husband confessed to a number of affairs throughout their 30-year marriage.
Diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour, the woman’s husband admitted to a series of affairs with just months to live. She explained that she wished her husband didn’t tell her anything, with the husband turning the tables and suggesting it was his wife’s fault he cheated in the first place.