real life

'I opened my letterbox to find a letter telling me the 'truth' about my partner.'

It’s almost Christmas and while we’re all busy with last minute preparations and shopping, one woman received a devastating letter with the potential to shake up her life.

In a post to UK’s BabyCentre, the woman asked for help after she received a letter in the mail telling her that her partner of two years is cheating on her.

The anonymous letter, which claimed to have been sent by her paramedic boyfriend’s co-worker, also said he’s got a Tinder profile and another profile on a dating site.

Listen: A Mamamia Out Loud listener has a slightly different dilemma that’s equally agonising. (Post continues…)

“We just moved in together and we’ve done up my house, rented out his and literally just got a dog,” she says.

“It’s Christmas. Our ‘anniversary’ is Christmas day. I’m distraught.”

“My question is what can I do about the letter?”

In subsequent comments, the woman admits that she may be “clutching at straws”, but is hoping the letter may be a joke or someone trying to break them up.

“Why would he do it though, why rent out his house, spend ages doing up my house (new kitchen, plumbing etc) sell all his furniture… I just don’t get it,” she says.

“I found the dating profile and it is him but the photos are old and from Facebook (public). The letter also said he stopped using it a while ago and the location is miles away. If I confront him with it he will deny it I’m sure and say it’s a joke – could it be a joke?

“I don’t think that any of his colleagues would send the letter – it’s only a small team and he could easily confront them all individually.”

It’s certainly a dilemma. If she’s worried there’s not enough evidence to confront him, should she do it anyway?

ADVERTISEMENT

According to Sydney-based clinical psychologist Stephanie Allen, the best thing a person who thinks their partner may be cheating should do is take some time and decide how they want to proceed.

Allen says ending the relationship may be the right choice, but it’s important to know that it’s a “carefully thought out decision” and not one made in haste.

After receiving advice from fellow forum users, the woman added she will confront her partner, who has two teenage children who live with them.

Listen: Esther Perel says there are lots of reasons people stray. (Post continues…)

“Time to get angry and not let the guilt get the better of me. I hate that there will be two kids (teenagers or not) potentially uprooted by this,” she says.

“I’ll confront him first I think and unless he can come up with a very good explanation then time to make a big decision.”

Allen, who works at Life & Mind Psychology, says when a woman does confront their partner about alleged cheating the most important thing to find out is why the cheating occurred – not all the details of it.

Allen says there will always be a reason, even if the person cheating doesn’t know what it is, though it’s important for them to find out.

“If he says, ‘well I really don’t know why I did it’ and she is considering moving forward with him in their relationship, he owes it to himself and her – and she owes it to herself and their relationship – for him to find out why he did it and how is he going to assure her that it’s never going to happen again,” she says.

What would you do in this situation? Would you track down the letter’s author first or confront your partner?

FROM OUR NETWORK
00:00 / ???