Should we tell our best friend that his mother is cheating?

Several hours ago I went to have a dinner with my girlfriend and many other good friends in a restaurant in Boston, and we saw a friend's mother is having an affair with another man. (Because that friend generally does not hang out with this group of people, only I, my girlfriend and another guy knew what happened so that is a quite little "secret" and she does not that someone found her secret.) We were sure that she is cheating, based on various intimate activities between his mother and that man! My girlfriend wants to tell that friend what happened, but I am against that idea and do not want to intervene this thing!

Do you think we should tell my friend what happened? Which solution do you think is better for us, for that friend and for his family?
  • Tell your friend.
    Vote A
  • Tell his father directly.
    Vote B
  • Confront with his mother and tell her to stop.
    Vote C
  • Do not intervene that crap.
    Vote D
  • Toss a coin or dice.
    Vote E
  • I do not know.
    Vote F
Select age and gender to cast your vote:
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Updates:
I and my girlfriend know his entire family, so we can tell his father or his brother directly.
Anyone has any specific suggestions?

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3638

Most Helpful Girl

  • Ok so I read some of the comments and I need to comment on comments:

    IF you choose to say anything it is NOT you breaking the family, that would be the people involved in the infidelity.

    That being said, you have no idea what kind of relationship arrangement your friends parents have. Meaning they could have an open relationship where both parties have agreed it is acceptable for them to see someone else. The status of what their relationship agreement is is none of your business and none of their children's business. So going to dad, brother or your friend directly is a pretty big invasion of privacy and will no doubt create a lot of tension for everyone; particularly if there is an arrangement between mom and dad that they've chosen to keep between the two of them.

    IF your moral conscious simply can't let it go, then I would suggest you 'casually' say something to mom about seeing her at the restaurant and watch her response. No accusations, judgments etc because you really don't know what's going on.

    These are VERY dangerous waters to tread in, getting involved could end up ruining your relationship with your friend. Think carefully before you do anything

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    • This was exactly what I was going to say. Great job. I am surprised that you are only 23, this is a very mature answer.

    • Very nice comment and suggestions. If it was me, I'd do the casual talk trick but not to see mom's reaction, more to give her a sign that whatever she is doing, it is being "discovered" and this could be a nice warning sign for her to think about what she's doing and solve it by herself and with her own family.

Most Helpful Guy

  • Regardless of what you saw, it may not be what you think. And yes, I have mouth kissed another woman when my wife was alive. And it was a friend of hers and I did it in front of her. The friendship was close and we expressed a tight friendship with kisses that were innocent. If someone had seen it and told my wife she would have laughed at them.

    If you are going to tell someone, tell the father. There is no reason to place your friend in the middle. Let the parents deal with it. As someone else has already stated, you should have gone to their table and greeted her innocently when it happened. That makes it obvious that you have seen them. But that mooment has passed.

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Have an opinion?

What Girls Said 35

  • Keep out of it here, dear, don't get involved or bark up the wrong tree. It's not your place to do Anything or in the end, you along with Mommy Dearest, will end up in the dog house.
    Good luck. xx

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  • So as far as I have read people think you should stay out of it. Now you should consider that you MAY have been jumping to conclusions. That being said, it is absolutely horrible not to tell your friend! "It's two consenting adults, stay out of it, sweetie..."? What the hell! No that is YOUR friend! You can't see something like that and not tell them! I say the best route would be to casually mention that you saw their Mom in Boston with some guy. If they know about it then just let it go. However if they do not know about it you should tell them, in a factual and non biased manner, what you saw. Telling the father and the brother, however, is a BAD idea. Once trust is broken in a relationship it is hard for it to be earned once more. Telling the father/brother could result in unresolvable conflicts over something that may or may not be happening. Just tell your friend and then support him/her in whatever they decide to do from that point on. Also PLEASE make sure to be as sensitive as possible. This is a bad situation and emotions run high around these sorts of topics.

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  • Tell you friend but don't jump to the conclusion that it was cheating, just tell he/she exactly what you saw his/her mother doing at... with the guy in the restaurant etc let he/she come to the conclusion on there own that there mother could of been cheating. Bring the situation up casually and in private don't create and atmosphere, what you tell him/her but be said in a neutral not judgmental way

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  • This is private and none of your business. Keep it to yourselves no matter how disturbing this is for you guys. Someone's relationships is none of anyone's business. If you tell your friend - you will start an endless and out of control hurtful and shameful things in some else's life. DO YOU WANT TO BE RESPONSIBLE for something that you don't know much about and won't have any control over once the cat is out of the bag?

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  • The right thing to do is at the very least make sure she finds out that someone knows.

    Maybe it was a one time thing and she will stop.

    However, that's wishful thinking.

    I think you should tell your friend and they can handle it from their (it is their family)

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  • Depends. How large is your conscience? Are you willing to involve yourself? Are you confident that the couple is even in a monogamous relationship? Just because they are married it doesn't mean they might have privately set up something "to change up the relationship" on the side.

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    • The conscious size idea is rather an interesting one. So would argue that it's wrong all together to get involved with someone else's relationship like that. Some would even say that it possible wreck household making the consequences much more severe than if the mother was left to continue her 'affair'. Personally, I think the best thing to do would be to raise suspicion like "I saw you mum the other day..." But the bigger question is that in today's society, why do we feel so ashamed to do the 'right' thing? Even the 'best' way I suggested is some minute way of acting as if we aren't delibrately 'trying' to get involved.

    • I wouldn't get the child involved. This is more of an issue between the parents then it is a family issue. Questioning ones loyalty to the partner effects the partner a lot more then the child. I am aware that he/she is around thier 20's. But still a child in the parents POV

      I dont think its shame to do the right thing more then it is the fear to get involved in a situation where you are involving yourself in other peoples affairs and privacy. I'm assuming OP is American, and america culture is very private when it comes to personal and family affairs. Not emphasizing on community. So, people fear breaking that privacy.

  • Telling ur friend is best because u guys can help him deal with the blow and then he can talk to his mom about it. If u tell the father he mite do something out of anger. If u tell ur friend he can tell his mom to confess to the family about it and maybe it will be easier for them to deal with it as a family. Either way their family will probably find out. Plus the mom probably doesn't want u to tell her how to live her life.

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  • It's not a good idea to get involved. You shouldn't tell either your friend or her dad but rather just let it sort itself out on it's own. You wouldn't want to be blamed if it caused a fight, right? Don't feel obligated to tell. It could get someone hurt.

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  • I voted not to intervene, but I think you should let your friend know what you saw. And only what you saw. Don't tell him any conclusions that you've drawn; you don't know the whole story so just stay out of that.

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  • Tell the mom you know and blackmail her! Lol I'm kidding. But let her know that you know and ask her why. It could because her hubby won't give her a divorce or maybe the mom n dad have an agreement on that type of stuff. Ask first, then do what you feel you need to.

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  • It's not your business what two consenting adults are doing. She'll get caught in time. You don't have to be involved in a potentially disastrous situation.

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  • "based on various intimate activities between his mother and that man"

    Could you describe these intimate activities? Just to assess if it was indeed a man and woman romantically involved.

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  • If I were you, I won't say anything to your friend. If your friend find it out and talk about it then I think you can tell your friend what you saw... it's really sensitive matter. Sometimes people doesn't need to know things that hurt their feelings till they find it out themselves. Only my opinion.

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  • You have no idea kind of relationship your friends parents have. The public front you see could be completely different from the reality, they could have an open marriage, they could swing, or be polyarmous.

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  • Don't get involved in that. If you do then you will make a huge mess and it my cost your friendship with this person. I think that it's best to just mind your own business. The truth may come put eventually.

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  • I stay out of things like that because sometimes people take it troubling news on the teller. Besides, it could create more resentment than there will already be.

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  • What a troubling situation. I feel awful for your predicament. I can understand you wanting to expose the mother, especially if you know, like and respect the father, however, it is my opinion that it simply is not your place to reveal what is really just a suspicion. What if, by chance, the mother is not actually cheating, and you cause damage to their relationship by making the father suspicious of her and whatever, for no reason?

    Did the mother happen to see you and your girlfriend at the restaurant? To be honest, I probably would've walked over to her table to "say hi". Then she would know that others knew she was there, and saw her with someone else other than her husband, etc. Then if something was actually going on, hopefully thereby prompting her to consider what she's doing, etc. But, you can't go back in time, so that's whatever.

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  • Omfg this is not a "toss a coin or dice" situation, calmly tell your friend and don't be surprised if he has a negative reaction. It's best to not keep it a secret.

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  • Go to his father directly.

    If you go to your friend he will go between denial and accusation. If he wants to talk it will unlikely be with his mother, it will be his father.

    My mother cheated on my dad. It was actually my mothers boss that approached my dad (hats off to him) and he said he needed anything like a witness in court he would. I found out my mother was cheating and approached her - she snapped at me and told me to talk to dad. So I did. My dad looked broken that I knew but relieved he could talk to someone within the house.

    It's his fathers relationship. It would be like if your girlfriend was cheating going to your sibling. You need to deal with the problem. You need the facts. His father deserves to know. I don't care what the circumstances are, cheating is a horrible thing for a family. If she hasn't yet she might be able to be stopped before she destroys her whole family.

    FYI, I haven't spoken or seen my mum since the divorce. That was 6 years ago.

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    • If you didn't want to be responsible for saying, you could write his dad a letter to stay anonymous. But I think he should know.

  • I dont think you guys have rights to intervene in that situation. I wouldn't want to be the one breaking the whole family!

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What Guys Said 37

  • This is a difficult situation. If you tell your friend, he will probably end up getting angry at you. If you don't tell him, and he learns later that you have known about the situation and kept your mouth shut, he will probably get mad at you.

    This is compounded by the fact that you don't know everything about this situation. Your friend's mother and father may have an "open marriage" arrangement (I don't advocate for anyone doing that, but there are a significant number of couples who do that.) They could have already decided to get a divorce but are waiting to announce it for some reason that is important to them.

    If you tell anyone, you should start with the mother. You can confront her and tell her to stop, but it is ludicrous to think that she will take advice from a 20 year old. Simply tell her what you saw, explain how it appeared, and tell her that you wanted to give her a chance to explain before you tell anyone else. After you talk to her, if your concerns are not addressed, tell your friend's father and let him handle explaining he situation to your friend.

    There is a chance that you will be falsely accused of telling lies and trying to cause problems. Either course of action involves the possibility of losing a friend, so consider the choices carefully, but don't wait too long to talk to the mother and then the father.

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  • "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."
    - Edmund Burke

    I would tell you friend just make sure you have all the facts. Regardless, as citizens and men, we need stand up to injustice. This is injustice, a man should have the right to know if his wife is cheating on him in vise versa, and that's the bottom line!!!

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  • I'm with you, William.
    Steer well clear.
    If a married woman is having an affair it is strictly between her and her conscience. It is none of anybody else's business, and that includes her husband. It's a matter of personal privacy, but more important is the innate hypocrisy of those who dare make moral judgements on other people's activities.

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  • Don't tell him. That would put strain on the relationship between the two if they he/she finds out that way. Personally I'd hint it to the father without telling him because if you flat out tell him, you're involved and that's just not somewhere you want to be is in the mix of that.

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  • I'd tell your friend and then let them be the one to make the decision whether to confront it or not. They have a right to know and so does the dad but you should leave it up to the friend whether or not this is something they want to go through with their parents.

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  • I would send an anonymous letter to the father. Only on what you saw. No conclusions. Just what you saw. I would not tell your friend or anyone else. It is something the parents should sort out among themselves. If it is indeed an affair, it might only be in the early stages. By giving the husband a heads up, things might still be saved. But do it anonymously so that if things go wrong, there would be no ill feelings between you and your friend. You will have to live with the secret though.

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  • Every passing moment the father of your friend is wasting his life on a total bitch that he could have been spending elsewhere. With that in mind I think you should do the humane thing and tell the dad that his wife is cheating. Not your friend, not anyone but him deserves to know what is going on. Not telling is kind of like not telling that he's being scammed by some financial thief.

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  • Oh man wow are you sure it was her? Cause this sounds like something you would seen in a movie. Okay if you are sure I think you should confront the mother first and give her a chance to tell her son or and husband and if she doesn't tell your friend. Man I would hate it if my mom cheated on my dad that must be hear breaking.

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  • I think confronting the mother is a no-go because she'll have time to concoct a story and he's more likely to believe his mother than you. The best bet would be to tell him even if it makes him angry with you, it'll be better in the long run and the extent of the damage done can be limited. You don't have to get involved if you don't want to but if you feel you need to then do it.

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  • Know right up front that revealing this to anyone can/will destroy your friend's home life. I don't think you'll want to feel any responsibility.

    Things will come unraveled soon enough without your "help."

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  • Tell the dad. If you keep shut about it and your friend finds out that you knew, you're fucked. If you tell your friend, he'll think that you're trying to ruin his family and you're fucked.

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  • if you tell your friend, it won't have efficacy and just help your friend to be more Depressed, but if you tell the matter his father directly his father can think and do the best do (if he is not a crazy man) and you should Contemplate it, s the father, s life at first and then your friend, s life

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  • As a friend I wouldn't let that escape, I would think about a way to let him know without causing too much drama like approach to him and friendly talk. During the convo I would say "hey I was on a meeting with my girl and I think I saw your mom in the same place we were having dinner", "I don't know man I think your uncle was there with her" you know things like then I would let him puzzle the rest himself. Simple.

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  • You need confront the father immediately. That is the only right thing to do here that I can see. Just imagine if you were he, and it was your wife was out there in public adulterating!

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  • best not to tell your friend but if you have to only confront the mum that way if it was a mistake you made then you less damage is done and if she was cheating then she might stop

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  • Obviously this information is a concern to you. The very fact you are asking the question means you have interest in telling your friend, to which, i would say go ahead. Its honest and its the truth.
    If you didn't really care, that would be fine too since its not really any of your business what your friend's mother does in her life. They may be secretively separated but are staying together for the children.
    So givin you already want to, i say tell your friend. Maybe you'll find out something knew, like he already knows.

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  • I'd like to add an answer. If you were my friend and you know my entire family, i'd expect you tell me. I'd ask back for details and stuff. Afterwards i'd say thank you and i'd tell you whether you should involve yourself in this or not. Keep in mind that whether i want you involved or not, i am grateful that you came up to me first. We are practically brothers here… unless it was you who ate my last instant noodle last week.

    Your friend could be different though. I think that if you're close enough with your friend then you wouldn't post this on GaG. Just think it over once more. Are you sure your friend's mom is in a monogamous relationship? Do you really want to get into this mess? Are you sure you're not being Punk'd? Did you or did you not eat my last instant… wait, no. Ignore the last two.

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  • From the looks of it you have already stated that you n your girl are friends with the guy whose mom could be cheating, so if you guys are all "REAL FRIENDS" than I don't know why you wouldn't say something. I don't know about you but my and my friends know each other for years and if some shits going down and you saw it and NEVER said anything you are scheduled for a beat down no matter what and everybody gets to jump your ass because now NO ONE can trust you with jack muthafuckin shit even more so with my military komrades. Some people like to toss the "friend" word around loosely and I don't! Being friends with me means having my back even if my moms a trifling whore I would rather hear it from you a trusted source, someone who was there, someone who knows me very well from a FRIEND! Rather than some stranger. I think somewhere deep down inside the dad may have already had somewhat of an inkling that there's something just not right.

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  • The truth is ugly but you were there for a reason, I think. Sorry to quote the bible...
    Ecclesiastes 3:
    A Time for Everything
    For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
    a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.

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  • That sucks, I would confront the mother and leave the rest of the family out of it, hopefully she would do the right thing

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