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Newest Member: Issyibbitt

Just Found Out :
Telling Adult Children

Topic is Sleeping.

 Withoutloveinthedream (original poster new member #79530) posted at 8:34 PM on Monday, May 15th, 2023

My wife has admitted, finally, to the emotional affair and now two seperate men she had a physical affairs with.

I'd like to know about telling adult children (twins 21 yrs old) about her affairs. Should we? what to say? advise please.

posts: 16   ·   registered: Oct. 27th, 2021   ·   location: North Carolina
id 8790958

waitedwaytoolong ( member #51519) posted at 9:15 PM on Monday, May 15th, 2023

A lot depends on what you want to do going forward. I for one would tell them. When I found out about my EXWW affair our marriage took a hard turn from a happy marriage to one that was shit. We didn’t tell them the reason, and in a vacuum the kids filled in their own theories. When we told them I had decided on ending the marriage they let me in on their theory, which was that I must have cheated as what she did was not even a possibility in their minds. They were shocked.

It took a little while but they came to terms with it, and still have a good relationship with their mother. It sounds like you also have a marriage where they must have seen the turmoil. Do you really want them believing that you were responsible? It sucks for them to know, and it will suck for her, but affairs have consequences and them knowing the truth should be one of them.

When and how, and why did she finally come clean?

I am the cliched husband whose wife had an affair with the electrician


posts: 2170   ·   registered: Jan. 26th, 2016
id 8790965

Tanner ( Guide #72235) posted at 11:24 PM on Monday, May 15th, 2023

I decided for us to not tell our grown children, I gave her the gift of R and that is between us. If she ever decides to have another A, I will tell everyone on my way out the door.

Dday Sept 7 2019 doing well in R BH M 32 years

posts: 3458   ·   registered: Dec. 5th, 2019   ·   location: Texas DFW
id 8790976

Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 1:42 PM on Tuesday, May 16th, 2023

I agree with Tanner.

If your intention is to reconcile there might not really be a need to let the kids know.
Some things are better left within the marriage – as opposed family.
If you were to divorce then IMHO stakeholders (and your grown kids are definitely stakeholders in the family-unit of the marriage) should be told in a courteous and age-appropriate way for the reasons for the divorce.

"If, therefore, any be unhappy, let him remember that he is unhappy by reason of himself alone." Epictetus

posts: 12456   ·   registered: Sep. 29th, 2005
id 8791039

sisoon ( Moderator #31240) posted at 8:14 PM on Tuesday, May 16th, 2023

I agree with Bigger and Tanner. If we D'ed, I would have told our son why. Since we R'ed, I didn't see a need to disrupt his life with our troubles.

I also withheld the info from my mom, who was 92 at the time. Mom and W had had a good relationship up to then, and I wanted to keep it that way. Again, if we had D'ed, I would have told Mom why.

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

posts: 29994   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8791108

foxglove ( member #21791) posted at 8:53 PM on Tuesday, May 16th, 2023

Hi Withoutloveinthedream,

I only told our adult kids (18 & 20) after we had decided to divorce. Had we stayed together, I don't believe I would have said anything, however, since my XH was leaving for the AP, I felt as though we needed to be up front rather than surprise them with something else.

Good luck to you,


Me (BS) 57
Married 21 years
Divorced 2/19/07
Two grown sons
Remarried 9/18

posts: 1563   ·   registered: Nov. 26th, 2008   ·   location: Southeast Michigan
id 8791116

emergent8 ( Guide #58189) posted at 9:02 PM on Tuesday, May 16th, 2023

Edit: Whoops, accidentally pressed post before I was finished.

I agree with Bigger and Tanner. Your move should depend on what your plan is right now.

If you are planning to attempt R, and the kids have both flown the coop, it might be worth trying to keep this to yourselves for now. If they are still living at home, or if they are close enough to notice that something is obviously off with you guys, then you should probably explain to them what is going on.

Obviously if you intend to divorce or separate, it makes sense to explain to them why.

[This message edited by emergent8 at 9:04 PM, Tuesday, May 16th]

Me: BS. Him: WS.
D-Day: Feb 2017 (8 m PA with married COW).
Happily reconciled.

posts: 2134   ·   registered: Apr. 7th, 2017
id 8791122

hardyfool ( member #83133) posted at 1:38 AM on Wednesday, May 17th, 2023

No reason to bring them into this private matter.

HOWEVER, I would strongly recommend you have everything documented, cataloged and kept in a safe place. Just in case.

posts: 139   ·   registered: Mar. 27th, 2023
id 8791159

RealityBlows ( member #41108) posted at 8:09 AM on Wednesday, May 17th, 2023

Yes, I agree, kids living in the house vs out of the house might call for different approaches

With kids out of the house, where you and your WS are mostly off-stage, and can better contain all the toxins, discretion is probably your best option if pursuing R.

If your kids are picking up that there’s something serious going on, Waitedwaytoolong’s warnings about the dangers of information vacuums is something to seriously consider. The BS always looks like the crazy one, the one causing problems, loosing their mind for no apparent reason, unreasonably depressed, a sad sack while the WS usually just stands there looking like a dumbfounded innocent victim. Without information they will fill in the blanks with erroneous assumptions that will probably not be in your favor and sympathy and support will lean her way. A nice insult to injury blow for the BS to deal with.

Oh, and Hardyfool’s reco to document everything is excellent. I did this and I ended up having to reference it to set the record straight after a bit of history rewrite, minimization and white wash was attempted by WS at my expense.

[This message edited by RealityBlows at 8:17 AM, Wednesday, May 17th]

posts: 1307   ·   registered: Oct. 25th, 2013
id 8791186

Edie ( member #26133) posted at 5:00 PM on Wednesday, May 17th, 2023

Telling them just causes them hurt. No need to spread the hurt around. I see no plausible reason to tell them.

Maybe a long walk in the Hindu Kush would do it?
BW (me) 52
FWS 55
Together 29 years; 2 kids 15 & 12
Dday Dec 08 (confessed) R'd.

posts: 6646   ·   registered: Nov. 9th, 2009   ·   location: Europe
id 8791254

jujubes ( new member #51428) posted at 6:13 PM on Wednesday, May 17th, 2023

For me a condition to R was no more cloak and dagger: everyone knows. This included every adult relative. I left out our children, but they were babies at the time. I can't imagine how I'd respond if the first indiscretion happened while I had adult children. I've told FWH that if there's another discretion I'd be letting the kids know why in an age appropriate way, while on my way out the door.

I think that's the crux for me. I wouldn't tell if it were a case of, "Mom and Dad are having trouble but we're working together on it". But I would if it were "Mom and Dad are having trouble and we're working separately on it". Either way I'd be sure to include that we both love the children and that this is absolutely not about them or anything they did. I would consider starting family therapy either with or without H.

Much love. Like I said, I can't imagine.

Me: 33 BS
DH: 37 WH

posts: 14   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2016
id 8791266

taken4granted ( member #61971) posted at 6:34 PM on Wednesday, May 17th, 2023

I believe it depends on who already knows. If you haven’t told anyone, that’s one thing. If you’ve told their aunts and uncles, it may slip at some time and it’s better coming from you. I think of my aunt and uncle. He cheated on her when their kids were in college. Everyone in the family knows but their kids. Even though my uncle passed years ago and we are now all in our 40s, my aunt is still scared that her kids will find out and she feels like she lied to them.

Just something to think about.

"If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything." - Mark Twain
Me: Living life! Him: Not my problem anymore
Married 15 yrs.
1 LTA, Many EAs from 2009 - ?
Dday 1 = 6/16/17
Last Dday = 1/4/18
Started loving myself 2018!

posts: 407   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2017   ·   location: OH
id 8791275

survrus ( member #67698) posted at 6:39 PM on Wednesday, May 17th, 2023

Your WW cheated on her kids as well her exposure is a consequence of what she did to her family.

It also creates a wider barrier to cross if she thinks about cheating again.

Yes tell the kids you have no obligation to keep your WWs crime secret.

Expose the OMs to their BWs while you are at it too.

posts: 1487   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2018   ·   location: USA
id 8791276

Mr. Kite ( member #28840) posted at 9:11 PM on Wednesday, May 17th, 2023

My WW's affairs took place when our only child was between the ages of 2 and 3. We never told him until last year when he turned 31. The reason I insisted on it was because he was getting close to betraying his wife, according to phone conversations I had with him. Ironically his daughter is around the same age as when my WW betrayed me.

According to both my WW and my DS it has brought them closer together and gave him an explanation of why Mom and Dad were the way we were while he was growing up.

I can't tell you what to do, but I can tell you what not to do.

posts: 1166   ·   registered: Jun. 18th, 2010   ·   location: Mid-Atlantic
id 8791302

Never2late ( member #79079) posted at 3:34 AM on Thursday, May 18th, 2023

I'm generally a fan of sunlight and transparency. It is not like your kids are 5. They are adults. You are not protecting them at this point. This is really just protecting your WS...why?

posts: 206   ·   registered: Jul. 7th, 2021
id 8791340

CoderMom ( member #66033) posted at 2:42 AM on Thursday, June 1st, 2023

Have you thought about counseling?

posts: 353   ·   registered: Aug. 31st, 2018   ·   location: Eastern States
id 8793321
Topic is Sleeping.
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