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Catherine Townsend

A sex and dating columnist, Catherine Townsend published her first novel Sleeping Around: Secrets of a Sexual Adventuress in 2007, and followed up with Breaking The Rules: Confessions of a Bad Girl in 2008. She also appeared in How To Have Sex After Marriage on Five, and is now writing a third book. Born in Arkansas, Catherine was a gossip columnist for New York Magazine before moving to London in 2003, since when she has had a very interesting - and pretty public - private life...

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To Tell Or Not To Tell?

Posted by Catherine Townsend
  • Thursday, 30 July 2009 at 05:13 pm
 I'm in LA for a few days, but I was really interested to read The Frisky's take on whether or not you should tell a friend if you suspect that their partner has been cheating. I don't know if it's just my social circle, but my American and UK friends seem to be on completely opposite sides of this debate. My American friends all say they would want to know, while my UK pals almost universally wouldn't. They say that what happens between couples isn't any of my business, and that if the person getting the bad news chooses to believe the cheater, I could lose the friendship (this article calls this phenomenon 'shoot-the-messenger syndrome').  

This is all true (and I have lost a friendship because I told someone I saw her man kissing someone else, which he denied...) but I still think that I would tell someone if I knew that their partner was screwing around. Because, at the end of the day, I would want someone to tell me. 

Comments

corporeal_v001 wrote:
Thursday, 30 July 2009 at 06:24 pm (UTC)

There is a massive difference between "suspect" and "know". If you know then tell, if you just suspect, then best forget it.

If you loose that friend because he/she believes the cheat over you, then that friend is unwise, good riddance, bye.
Cheater!
suze_alexsuze wrote:
Thursday, 30 July 2009 at 06:48 pm (UTC)
Catherine, I have to agree with you I feel exactly the same about knowing. I couldn't be with someone who clearly had no respect for me.

I'm not sure how I would go about telling them. Maybe set a hypothetical scene and see how they respond to that first.

Relationships are about trust and if you don't have that, then what do you have. To carry on as if nothing has happened simply wouldn't work.

It's a good topic for debate!
Consider this.
airmarshall wrote:
Thursday, 30 July 2009 at 08:28 pm (UTC)
Would you consider having an affair with me Catherine, I won't tell anyone, I wouldn't even tell Suze.

Now Suze, the cheating so and so doesn't respect you, hardly, more to the point, it is the cheat that lacks in self respect.
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