Unfortunately, many people find themselves in this predicament. They learn that their spouse is cheating, and they must make some decisions that may affect their future in ways they don’t anticipate. If you’re going through something like this, you may ask yourself many questions including: Do I confront my cheating spouse? Do I gather evidence on my spouse’s infidelity before confronting him/her? Should I publicly shame my spouse? Before you do anything, here are a few things to keep in mind:
Pros and Cons of Proving Adultery
Massachusetts allows for both fault and no-fault divorces. Adultery is one of the many grounds for a fault-based divorce. Proving adultery can impact other aspects of a divorce, such as alimony and child custody. However, it is only one of many factors considered. A cheating spouse is rarely enough to completely disqualify someone from obtaining alimony or child custody.
Not Everything is Admissible in Court
If you suspect your spouse is cheating, stop and think before you start spying on your spouse to collect evidence. Is what you are doing legal? It may or may not be. Information that you obtain by illegal means is not admissible in court. If proving infidelity is critical given prenuptial agreement terms or for other reasons, contact a divorce attorney first. Your attorney can assist with obtaining information through legal means, which would best protect your interests.
Social Shaming Can Do More Harm than Good
Emotions can run high when dealing with a cheating spouse. Out of anger or spite, you may want to tell the world about what your spouse has done. However, public shaming may end up doing harm to yourself. First and foremost, it could be used against you. How do your actions reflect your personal character? Can your actions be construed as slander? If you have children, how will it impact them and their relationship with both you and your spouse? How will your friends and family react? Will your actions cause them to take sides and create an unwanted divide? Most people who resort to public shaming believe they are in the right, but the reaction from others can be mixed. Before you do anything, consider the impact on yourself and your loved ones.
Figuring Out First and Next Steps
Let’s face it, suspecting or learning that a spouse is cheating is emotional and stressful. During these times, you are unlikely to make the best decisions. Plus, every situation is unique. To ensure that you are doing what’s best for you, contact a Massachusetts divorce attorney for advice. Your attorney can help you figure out how and when to confront a cheating spouse and what steps to take towards divorce. The information in this blog post and in our other divorce topics should not be construed as legal advice, but our team can certainly provide you with legal advice. Contact us for a consultation.