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Exposure?

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sisoon posted 12/4/2019 10:29 AM

I'm puzzled by the reco to expose an A.

My W confessed and started to fix herself on d-day. She hasn't stopped, and I don't think she will ever let herself fuck up that way again. OBS knew before I did. The A stopped on d-day - W rejected a number of attempts to renew contact.

I don't have friendships that include sharing M trouble. My mom was in her 90s and loves my W in her way. Why expose the A to her? Our son has his own life. Why expose to him?

I have no trouble with fellow BSes who expose because they want to. I read posts from women who
say they've exposed to anyone who will listen, and I think that's great, because they chose to expose.

So I'm puzzled by the reco to expose the A, which seems to mean 'always expose the A, under all circumstances.'

Am I misreading the advice?

If you think you can help me understand, go for it.

I'm aiming to broaden my understanding of recovery here, not to argue against exposure.

Thanks in advance.

tushnurse posted 12/4/2019 10:36 AM

So I'm puzzled by the reco to expose the A, which seems to mean 'always expose the A, under all circumstances.'

Nope, not this girl. I don't agree with it for several reasons.

1. Don't immediately go scorched earth, it gives you some power and an ace in the hole if you need it.

2. Exposure to the other BS should happen unless there is a legitimate concern about safety to that person, or your own.

3. When a WS is truly doing the work exposure doesn't have any effect, and can do some real damage to other relationships, especially in situations that friends and family have never been effected by infidelity directly.

When a WS is not remorseful and R is being attempted I do believe exposure to everyone does play a role in killing the A, and shaming the WS into pulling their head from their ass.
When a WS just flat out leaves, I think it completely ok for the BS to out the A to make sure that they are not blamed for D or S. To make sure that friends and family get the real story as we know many WS's are great a spinning things and making the BS out to be the bad guy.

Anyway that was my 2 cents.

Buck posted 12/4/2019 10:41 AM

How is not telling some folks any different than a WS not confessing to BS in the first place?

On the same note, should a WS not disclose certain details or events of the A that would further hurt the BS?

It seems like the same line of thought or reasoning to me.

sewardak posted 12/4/2019 10:49 AM

I think exposure to a BS is VERY different than the scorched earth policy to expose to everyone.

I think the OBS should ALWAYS know. I think the peripheral folks is on a case by case basis.

Oldwounds posted 12/4/2019 10:56 AM

How is not telling some folks any different than a WS not confessing to BS in the first place?

Because I'm not married to anyone else.

When my life was peachy or so I thought, I didn't go around bragging when I got great sex to the rest of the world. Was I omitting the full truth of my life? No.

That shit is personal.

My marriage is personal, I owe NO ONE else on this planet a damn thing.

Our MC, who has been in the biz for 35-years, he was a BS as well, he told us it was up to us who to tell. But he did say that R is hard enough with two voices and can (maybe) be made more difficult by adding more voices.

Ultimately, it is absolutely a personal choice to tell whoever you want, but I'm never under any obligation to explain my entire existence to anyone else. Ever.

Dismayed2012 posted 12/4/2019 10:59 AM

Exposure doesn't have to equal 'scorched earth'. Sometimes telling a good friend or family member is important so they know how to support you while you're in pain. I'm for exposure as needed based on the situation. I'm also a stickler for honesty. If someone asks, I don't lie for anyone. I don't necessarily share intimate or specific details but I'm definitely not going to lie if asked. In your situation perhaps exposure wasn't needed or beneficial. I do hope that you at least protected yourself with a post-nuptial agreement. This serves two purposes; it protects your future and sends the message to your cheater that you're prepared if they do it again. Take care of yourself.

humantrampoline posted 12/4/2019 11:05 AM

I think there have been examples here where a BS has been urged to expose the infidelity to family members to get their support, and it totally backfired. I believe a BS should be careful about exposing to anyone for support because you can't predict anyone's reaction.


I did have a crisis of conscience about not exposing at one point. The OW is on the school board, and WS and OW met through the children during school functions. At one point, one of their planned meetings was cancelled for an emergency board meeting.

I think if other parents knew, they would probably not want OW on the board. I felt about how I would feel as a parent of the school, and OW started her next affair with another parent. Would that make me an accomplice? What if she becomes board president? It's certainly my belief that OW isn't fulfilling her role in the best interest of the school or children. I think I felt this way during the supreme court justice hearings.

BetterTimesAhead posted 12/4/2019 11:24 AM

I think the reco is more for people who are continuing their A after DDay, in an effort to end it due to it being out in the open. The shame they feel is supposed to make them stop cheating. Don't know if that works as I am a BS and have not done that.

As for telling family and friends, I take that on a case by case basis. Some people know, some don't. Most have been very supportive without trying to direct me towards D or R. My close family does not know as I am certain they would have an opinion.

DebraVation posted 12/4/2019 11:29 AM

I think it's up to the BS. I have an issue where the BS doesn't tell in order to 'protect' the WS in some way as I don't think that's your role when they've just had an affair.

I told lots of people. Fair play to you if you didn't, but I don't know how I would have got through it otherwise. Not just because I needed the support but I hoped people would understand a bit more why I was acting like a crazy person suddenly. I am a bad actor.

Buck posted 12/4/2019 11:36 AM

I think the OBS should ALWAYS know. I think the peripheral folks is on a case by case basis.

So you're choosing who deserves the truth and who doesn't?

When my life was peachy or so I thought, I didn't go around bragging when I got great sex to the rest of the world. Was I omitting the full truth of my life? No.
That shit is personal.

WTF does that have to do with exposing your cheating wife's affair? The mental gymnastics folks go through sometimes surprises me. A married with children cheater doesn't just betray their spouse.

Would you tell your son, mother, father, siblings, etc., if you're getting a divorce and the reason why? If so, why wouldn't you expose during the R attempt? Should they have a "heads up" that D may be in the future? Wouldn't that knowledge soften the blow? And doesn't your WS owe those immediate family folks an explanation or an attempt at making amends too, especially your children? I think so.

I guess I wonder about the motivation behind not disclosing. Is it to save yourself from shame and embarrassment or is it truly to spare your cheater some bullshit?

I'm also somewhat torn on this issue. At the least the 'always expose' folks seem honest and authentic to me.

Oldwounds posted 12/4/2019 11:38 AM

WTF does that have to do with exposing your cheating wife's affair?

Everything. It has everything to do with it's MY personal life and decision.

Do you expose the world to your tax returns? Why not?

Because it's your money, your decision.

Same EXACT reason I don't owe it to ANYone about ANY aspect of my personal life.

No mental gymnastics required.

Oldwounds posted 12/4/2019 11:45 AM

Is it to save yourself from shame and embarrassment or is it truly to spare your cheater some bullshit?

I thought this deserved a separate response, because I think some people do skip exposure for either reason.

I'm personally not embarrassed by my wife's shitty choices. Those are on her. In her case, the AP bragged about it and it cost her a job, it cost her career a huge setback, and again, all on her.

I simply didn't tell anyone else because I didn't need to.

No one else needed to know.

I'm plenty authentic without telling the world about my taxes, finances or my bedroom (whether it's going great or horrible).

Maybe I'm more private is all.

Would she have caught some more punishment? Probably, but in my case she is going to be crushed by her own conscious years after I'm though processing it all. Some WS betray their own values first.

cocoplus5nuts posted 12/4/2019 11:49 AM

I told the people in my life who were important to me. I needed to so that I could talk about it. I not good and pretending things are ok when they aren't. I'm not going to lie when someone asks me I'm so upset.

I don't consider that exposure. I only told the people who mattered to me. I didn't broadcast it to everyone, get billboard sign, send an email to everyone they worked with. That's what exposure means to me, telling the world.

I think on SI exposure is advised if the A seems to be ongoing, maybe taken underground.

Buck posted 12/4/2019 11:50 AM

Everything. It has everything to do with it's MY personal life and decision.
Do you expose the world to your tax returns? Why not?
Because it's your money, your decision.
Same EXACT reason I don't owe it to ANYone about ANY aspect of my personal life.
No mental gymnastics required.

Does your cheating wife owe you the truth?

Oldwounds posted 12/4/2019 11:56 AM

Does your cheating wife owe you the truth?

Yes she does.

A marriage is the most intimate relationship I have.

It's different than the relationship I have with the guys I've been friends with since 8th grade (like 42 years now). Or with anyone else.

I think that's why infidelity hurts so much BECAUSE it's supposed to be a different relationship than with anyone else.

All I'm saying is choosing who to reveal my innermost intimate issues with -- outside of my marriage -- is my choice.

[This message edited by Oldwounds at 11:59 AM, December 4th (Wednesday)]

EllieKMAS posted 12/4/2019 11:57 AM

I think the scorched earth approach is good in some cases. One of these would be if WS was having A with a supervisor at their workplace. I am sure there are other scenarios that I have thought of for it, but I can't recall them at the moment.

IMHO, the OBS should always be told unless there is some type of imminent harm situation in the mix.

Let's face it, the bulk of BS's at the beginning are gung-ho about R (I call this the BS fog). I know I was. So I think for a lot of the early days for a BS thinking that the M will survive it, exposure really sounds like a bad idea. But realistically and statistically, most M's don't survive an infidelity. I recommend exposing to new BS's because it can serve to pull the BS out of their fog, just as much as it can the WS.

ETA - in this last scenario, 'exposure' does not mean telling everyone. But for sure telling close friends and family.

[This message edited by EllieKMAS at 11:58 AM, December 4th (Wednesday)]

Oldwounds posted 12/4/2019 11:59 AM

I think on SI exposure is advised if the A seems to be ongoing, maybe taken underground.

Yes. And I've advised people to expose in such circumstances.

I may have done the same thing if I discovered the A in real time.

At this point, where I'm at, it doesn't change much, so I haven't told anyone else.

sewardak posted 12/4/2019 12:02 PM

So you're choosing who deserves the truth and who doesn't?

yes. I mean where do you draw the line? Should your dry cleaner know?

Also, I wanted the ppl to know who supported ME without adding necessary drama. It was all for my benefit.

DebraVation posted 12/4/2019 12:02 PM

I think the marriage involves you and your spouse therefore the BS absolutely deserves the whole truth. And the OBS also deserves the whole truth about THEIR marriage because it impacts them directly.

However, telling other people is the BSs choice and doesn't, IMO, equate to a lie anywhere near in proportion to the WS's lie to the BS. Otherwise, where do you draw the line? Do you owe the truth to your parents? And if so siblings? Then distant cousins? The list could go on and on, and there is no onus on you to tell these people every detail of your life, e.g. your pay check. The only caveat on that is don't avoid telling people to protect your spouse or to save yourself embarrassment.

BUT if the BS wants to tell everyone then they can. I was in this camp. i told parents, friends, the children's school, my hairdresser and my employer. And probably countless others. My choice. And if WS had any complaint about it, I'd have a major problem with that.

DebraVation posted 12/4/2019 12:02 PM

I think the marriage involves you and your spouse therefore the BS absolutely deserves the whole truth. And the OBS also deserves the whole truth about THEIR marriage because it impacts them directly.

However, telling other people is the BSs choice and doesn't, IMO, equate to a lie anywhere near in proportion to the WS's lie to the BS. Otherwise, where do you draw the line? Do you owe the truth to your parents? And if so siblings? Then distant cousins? The list could go on and on, and there is no onus on you to tell these people every detail of your life, e.g. your pay check. The only caveat on that is don't avoid telling people to protect your spouse or to save yourself embarrassment.

BUT if the BS wants to tell everyone then they can. I was in this camp. i told parents, friends, the children's school, my hairdresser and my employer. And probably countless others. My choice. And if WS had any complaint about it, I'd have a major problem with that.

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