“I got to be open and honest with you…”
This usually precedes some brutal statement about the “failings” of the faithful spouse as understood by the cheater. The openness and honest part of such a verbal barrage is usually limited to being open and clear in the cheater’s utter contempt and hatred for the faithful spouse.
That is about all that is “open and honest.”
The sad thing is how as faithful spouses that we sometime invite this abuse. We ask for ways we can win back the cheater. (Even though, that is not our job!) Some of us even ask for ways we have failed in the marriage thinking we can fix this ourselves.*
Our cheaters then come back with this propaganda piece about being honest–see I am morally noble in my verbal beat down of you–tied with some sort of grievance list.
In my opinion, a cheater–both emotional and physical cheaters–ought to be taken to task when playing for this moral high ground.
Cheaters are not qualified to lecture their partner about openness and honesty when they were the model of lying and double-life deceit. If they forget this, they need to be reminded of it. Cheater arrogance is not the path to healing. Humility is.
Public Service Announcement:
Declaring oneself “open and honest” is not the same thing as being “open and honest.”
If you take this claim at face value, you do not dig, and the cheater avoids scrutiny. This is precisely what a practiced deceiver wants. He or she wants the focus off their actions.
When you have a known cheater, you have a known, practiced deceiver in your presence.
A wise person will not fall for the tactic of a cheater calling themselves honest without verifying whether or not that is the actual case.
Further, a wise person will not allow a cheater to use the cover of noble sounding words–i.e. propaganda–as a way to launch a verbal beat down of their victim–i.e. the faithful spouse.
Be wise. Don’t fall for this one. Do not invite a verbal beat down or play into the cheater’s pride and arrogance.
*If you have already done this, don’t beat yourself up further. Learn from your mistakes–as I am here in this blog–and move forward. In my opinion, we fall for this one especially when we are unwilling to accept that divorce might be warranted and wise under some conditions–e.g. with a contemptuous cheater.