Originally Posted by moth-into-flame View Post
I don't get this mentality - forcing an affair to stop doesn't solve the problem. Forcing someone's hand to stop their horrible behavior doesn't make the behavior go away, or make them somehow come around, or stop being a cheater. If you want to burn down an affair for the sake of burning it down - to prevent them from enjoying their devious, cruel, disgusting behavior, by all means. But shutting it down will not solve the problem - which is that your spouse doesn't love you anymore, that they are by nature a liar, cruel, narcissistic, devious, deceitful and willing to do anything to anyone to get what they want, when they want it. Shutting down an affair may kill the affair (probably not), but it will not change the nature of the cheater.
I'd realize it's several pages later, and I'm answering your question because I suspect the OP may also be asking himself this--in other words "How in the world could exposing possibly be helpful? Tha'ts crazy!"
So first, let's just be clear that if you want to divorce, and infidelity is a deal-breaker period...the marriage was killed by the disloyal spouse and it is DEAD...then that is a choice that has both a benefit and a cost, just like every other choice. In that instance, exposure does not possible good, other than to inform some people so that the loyal spouse has some support. Thus, if it's DONE and that's that...the loyal might tell his/her own family or their mentor/pastor or best friend so they have someone who can give them wise counsel and emotional reinforcement.
But if the loyal spouse WANTS A CHANCE AT reconciliation, that literally can never, EVER happen while the affair is active. Thus, ending the affair becomes focus #1. End the affair at all costs. Again, this is a choice that has both a benefit and a cost, just like every other choice. It is like a last ditch attempt to save the marriage. There is maybe a 5-10% chance it may work, because affairs thrive in secrecy and very often die in the light of day. So the idea-hope-concept is to expose it as ADULTERY to his family, her family, his siblings, her siblings, pastor/minister/priest (spiritual guide), marriage-friendly friends--and risk the "anger" of the disloyal in order to essentially smack them upside the head and bring them to their senses. A marriage can survive anger--it can not survive ongoing adultery. So that is part 1--end the adultery. Part 2 would have to be that disloyal does come to their senses AND CHANGES OF THEIR OWN ACCORD.
See, very often people forget about that second part. Sure, it's possible to end the affair by embarrassing the **** out of the AP and disloyal, but that doesn't automatically mean that the disloyal all-of-a-sudden is going to "stop being unfaithful" and "start being faithful." To rebuild the marriage you can't just stop the poor behavior! You have to also/simultaneously start HEALTHY behavior. And that means that the disloyal has to want it and has to be the one to pursue changing who they are from the inside. At the same time, the loyal has to be willing to put up with all that! And that is a HUGE gift! If someone can do that, they are quite literally a hero!
So the answer is this: this is a last-ditch attempt. If the affair continues, the marriage has 0% chance to survive. If the affair at least ends, without the influence of the AP, there is maybe a 5% possibility the disloyal MIGHT come to their senses. If they can come to their senses, it is at least within the realm of possibility that they may be willing to identify their own weaknesses and face their demons and change. If they do not come to their senses, they'll likely still defend their choices out of pride--being unable to admit they were wrong. I'd say about 95% are too proud to change even when they come to their senses, and that number is conservative.