Should I Report My Husband Affair To HR?

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about a husband’s affair: Should I send an anonymous letter to his HR department and report the affair?

A few months ago I received a phone call that my husband was having an affair with a coworker and her name was given to me. I also saw in his phone bills that he has been texting and calling her cell number many times during the day. He has now changed is password to the phone bill and doesn’t allow me to see it. I also saw him writing to her on Facebook. He claims she is just a friend. Should I send an anonymous letter to his HR department and report the affair? According to the company rules an affair within the dept is not acceptable.

Signed, Excluded Wife

Dear Excluded Wife:

My short answer is NO. Sure you are hurt and angry, but weigh what reporting your husband is having an affair with a coworker might do, even reporting it anonymously. Do you want your husband to get fired? Even if you divorce, having him unemployed won’t be to your advantage. Do you want to stay married? Having him unemployed won’t be to your advantage. So if you can control your anger and not wreak revenge by getting him disciplined or fired, what should you do?

Ask The Workplace Doctors is not a marriage counseling service; therefore, our advice pertains to communication and behavior at work. However, it seems likely your husband’s explanation “she is just a friend” is a lie. In addition to the phone calls that your husband is having an affair, his excluding you from seeing what he texts, who and how often he calls and what he sends to this individual on Facebook loudly shout that your marriage is in serious trouble.

Secretly, reporting your husband is having an affair with a coworker to his employer, even if it doesn’t get him fired, will only add to the mistrust between him and you. Should you tell your husband that you did that or plan to do that most probably would escalate to a fight between you. A crisis in a marriage sometimes surfaces what has been hidden and the need to reassessing what has been unsaid. If you two can talk through this, possibly with the aid of a professional marriage counselor, one of the rules you will need to consider if you are to have a future is “no secrets”; no secret passwords, no secret bills, no secret money accounts, perhaps except for petty cash.

This is a time you might take a genuine interest in his work and life and he in yours. This is time to confront and engage in discussion of where you are and what you each need and want now and in the future, and that could be divorce. My signature sentence: Working together with hands, head, and heart takes and makes big WEGOS, applies to personal relationships as well as to the workplace. My best to you in this difficult time.

William Gorden