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My friend is marrying a cheater. What would you do?
October 1, 2007, 12:36 pm
Filed under: cheating, DC, family, Feminism, feminists, friends, infidelity, love, marriage, relationships

So, what am I supposed to do?

I’ve never understood the cheating mentality. I am no saint, but I find the idea of cheating to be unethical and …just completely against everything that I believe love to be. How could one spend so much time wooing the person they want to spend a good portion of their lives with, and then go out and cheat on that person? How could one to love someone, and not have the discipline to say no to being with another person?

Maybe it’s because I have high standards when it comes to relationships and do not fall in love with just anyone, and thereby selfishly do not want to cheat, for fear I might lose that person. Or …maybe, just maybe it’s because I am not an asshole (although I’ve been told otherwise). In either cases, I neither condone nor understand cheating.

So, I beg the question: what do I do in this situation? Go to the wedding and pretend everything is fine? Or do I not attend the wedding at all and risk hurting a friend?

3 Comments so far
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I think you have to go. It seems as if she knows what she’s getting into. It always sucks to have to sit back and watch friends make bad choices in their mates, but there’s only so much you can do. If you haven’t done so already, you could set her aside and tell her how you feel — that judging from past history, etc, you don’t think this guy will change, and that you think she’ll be hurt again. That people don’t change just b/c of a ring on their finger. However, that’s all you can do, and beyond that you HAVE to be there for her and support her, which means being at her wedding. No matter what happens, or how right you may end up being, she may never forgive you, one of her very best friends, for not being at her wedding. Just smile, and hope for the best. Who knows. Miracles sometimes happen…

Comment by Marcy

Honestly, sometimes I wish my friends and family had told me not to marry my ex-husband instead of pretending everything was okay. (BTW, he wasn’t a cheater, just not the marrying type, and left me after 4 months. I was lucky.) My brother says that he didn’t know how to say anything because he couldn’t quite put into words how there was something wrong, and my parents and some friends have also mentioned that they just had a strange feeling. Also, I’m almost positive that I wouldn’t have listened to any advice I would have received, and would have resented the critics.

So, this is really hard. Is an intervention possible? You mention other friends at the wedding, so maybe a few of you could talk to her in a very non-accusatory way. I think if a group of people had approached me in a comfortable spot, I might have listened, but if individuals had told me that they didn’t trust my judgment, I would have resented the hell out of them. It seems more like genuine concern than spite or jealousy that way.

And that’s important: not to make her feel stupid or that you don’t trust her judgment. That will just push her away. I’ve also dealt with a person who was a closeted (though not to me and our friends) gay man until he got married. The wedding was extremely difficult for me because I thought he would be miserable, but I also didn’t think I had a right to judge or make decisions for him. His best friend did judge, and they are no longer speaking. I asked him if he really wanted to do this and if he was being honest with himself and his wife, and he answered yes, and that was all I could do. I told him that if anything ever happened that he could count on me and I would never judge him, because I know a lot of our friends would and turn it into a circus. That actually really pissed him off, but I think he’ll remember it if the time comes that everything falls apart.

Wow, that was long. Good luck.

Comment by Mary

This is so hard. I had a friend that dated a loser for almost three years. He was jealous, possessive, anti social…and just before she left him, she found out he was into child porn. I kept my mouth shut for basically the entire time they were dating and she later told me that she wishes somebody had said something about what a jerk he was. I don’t know though…would she have listened then? Would your friend listen to you now? Or will you be talking to her in three years, listening to her ask, “Why didn’t you tell me?!” Maybe it’s just something she needs to find out for herself. However, if you have concrete proof of the cheating, she may thank you for telling her, even if she still marries him. Oh my…what a difficult situation. But yeah, I think you still have to go to the wedding, even if it’s upsetting. Just one of those things.

Comment by Sunny

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