Are you feeling guilty about something that you've done? Perhaps you've done something you regret. Typically, feelings of shame and guilt are often followed by the following question: Should I tell my husband or wife, boyfriend or girlfriend, what happened?
Everyone makes mistakes from time to time. For instance, a flirtatious encounter at work may have gone too far. Or a surprise visit by an ex may have become too (emotionally) intimate. Or perhaps you've betrayed your partner's confidence by telling his or her secrets to a friend.
Sometimes it pays to come clean, but often it can lead to more problems than it solves. Not only are such decisions difficult to make, but given the nature of the problem, it is often hard to discuss your options with others.
When trying to determine if you should come clean about something that has happened, the first set of questions to ask yourself are also the most important.
Can you keep it a secret? Will someone tell your partner what happened? Will your husband or wife, boyfriend or girlfriend eventually find out the truth?
If your spouse or partner is going to discover the truth – you MUST be the one to tell before he or she finds out on their own. If your partner discovers the truth through other means – surveillance, third party information, or accidental discovery, the damage has already been done.
If your spouse uncovers the truth before you confess, it will be much more difficult for you to regain your partner’s trust. If you get caught before you come clean, now not only have you done something wrong, but you also tried to hide it from your spouse. Unfortunately, you have proven that you cannot be trusted to tell the truth when it matters the most.
If, however, you confess before your partner discovers what happened, the disclosure may still cause a lot of problems, but at least your partner can trust what you say. Having trust is critical when trying to work through problems. If you come clean before getting caught, your partner is much more likely to forgive you and work through problems with you.
Ultimately, telling the truth is critical, especially when the truth is going to be discovered anyway.