If you suspect – or know – your spouse is cheating, you still want to hear it from their own mouth.
But getting some people to admit they’re cheating is near impossible, even when they’re backed against the wall and you have evidence.
There are some subtle things, however, that you can do from a psychological perspective to encourage them to open up and tell the truth.
Here are 10 tips on how to get the truth from a cheating spouse – I really hope this helps you!
10 Tips On How to Get the Truth From a Cheating Spouse
1. Choose a Good Time to Question Them
You might be feeling hurt, angry, and betrayed right now – and rightfully so.
But before you confront your spouse about their infidelity, make sure you’re in the right frame of mind to do so.
You don’t want to come across as hysterical or irrational, as this will only put them on the defensive and make them less likely to open up.
Likewise, there are good and bad times to bring up the topic.
Try to talk to them when you’re both in a good mood, not in a hurry, and they don’t feel like they’re being cornered.
2. Use Open Body Language
Your body language is just as important as the words you use when you’re trying to get your spouse to open up and be honest.
If they see you’re being aggressive, they’ll likely put up their guard and become defensive.
Instead, try to keep an open posture – arms uncrossed, leaning towards them, etc.
This will show that you’re approachable and non-threatening, making it more likely that they’ll feel comfortable enough to confide in you.
Likewise, make sure your facial expressions convey understanding and concern, not anger or judgment.
The last thing you want is for them to feel like they’re being attacked or cornered.
3. Don’t Be Confrontational
This is often easier said than done, but when you’re questioning your spouse it’s important to avoid being confrontational.
This means no accusatory statements or questions, no ultimatums, and no yelling.
Instead, try to keep the conversation as calm and level-headed as possible.
Remember, you’re trying to get them to open up to you, not to make them feel defensive.
You may not hear what you want or to hear or even get anywhere with the first conversation, but if you approach it in the right way it leaves the door open to try again in the near future.
4. Make Sure You Listen as Well as You Talk
When you’re trying to get information from someone, it’s easy to focus so intently on what you want to say that you don’t give them enough of a chance to respond.
If you want your spouse to feel comfortable enough to confide in you, it’s important that you actively listen to what they’re saying.
This means making eye contact, not interrupting, and really hearing what they’re trying to tell you.
I know it can be difficult to do this when you’re feeling hurt and betrayed, and with such an explosive topic as being cheated on.
But your spouse is more likely to open up if they feel like you’re really listening to them so it’s essential you give them every chance.
5. Show Your Hand and Tell Them What You Know
If you want your partner to be honest and skip some of the games, it’s better that you tell them what you know – if anything – right off the bat.
This can be a difficult thing to do, but it gives them a chance to be honest with you from the start instead of playing coy and trying to deny what’s happening.
It also shows that you’re not going into the conversation blindly – which can make them more likely to respect you and take you seriously.
They may still try to play games or lie, but at least you’ve given them the opportunity to come clean from the beginning.
6. Try and Use Lots of Open Questions
One of the keys to having an open conversation with anyone is to ask them lots of open questions.
Open questions are those that can’t be answered with a simple “yes” or “no”, and they encourage the other person to elaborate on their thoughts and feelings.
This is especially important when you’re trying to get information from someone who may be feeling defensive.
On the flip side, asking closed questions – those that can be answered with a single word – will only make them more guarded and less likely to open up to you.
You might have to choose your questions wisely, but it’s certainly worth doing.
7. Don’t Push Them Too Far, There Is Always Another Time
If your spouse isn’t ready to open up, pushing them too hard is only going to make things worse.
They’ll feel like you’re attacking them and will only dig their heels in more.
It might not feel like it, but it’s important to remember that there is always another time to question them and planting the seed now might be what makes them come clean later.
If they’re absolutely not ready to talk now, there is probably no point forcing it.
You can try again later when the time is right.
8. Never Accuse Them of Anything You’re Not Sure About
Not accusing them about anything you’re not 100% sure about is important for two reasons.
Firstly, if you’re wrong then you’re going to look foolish and it’ll damage your relationship even further.
Secondly, if you’re right then they might just deny it outright and get angry with you for accusing them without any proof.
It’s just not a wise game to play and can potentially backfire.
If you want to get the truth from a cheating spouse, it’s always best to stick to the facts, not jump to conclusions, and encourage them to talk to you.
9. Emphasize with Them and Their Feelings
This is a tough one for most people to do. But if your spouse is cheating on you, then it’s likely that they’re feeling pretty terrible about it.
They might be feeling guilty, ashamed, and (hopefully) like they’ve let you down.
I’m sure you’re thinking about everything other than empathizing with them right now, but by doing so you’ll encourage them to open up more.
Also, there may have been issues in the relationship that you were or were not aware of.
Helping them to open up about their feelings by emphasizing and trying to understand where they’re coming from will help your healing process too.
10. Don’t Say Anything You’ll Regret While Emotions Are High
This is probably the most important tip on this list.
When emotions are running high, it’s very easy to say something you’ll later regret.
I’m sure you’re feeling betrayed, angry, and like your world is falling apart – and that’s completely understandable.
But lashing out in the moment is only going to make things worse and could prevent you from ever getting the truth from your spouse.
It’s important to try and stay calm (even if you don’t feel calm) as there may be more to their story, and you also don’t want to ruin any chance of getting along amicably in the future.
Image credits – Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash
Phil lives in England, UK, and has around 20 years experience as a professional life, career and executive coach. He started this blog to help others find and define their own self development journey. Blogging about a wide range of topics to help facilitate a better future.