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Dad goes behind daughter's back; tells son-in-law, 'Your wife isn't who you THINK she is.' AITA? MAJOR UPDATES.

Dad goes behind daughter's back; tells son-in-law, 'Your wife isn't who you THINK she is.' AITA? MAJOR UPDATES.


When this father is disgusted with his daughter's actions and feels the need to tell his SIL what his wife is REALLY like, he asks Reddit:

"AITA for telling my son in law that his wife(my daughter) has a skeleton in the closet?"

I've been a long time lurker, never thought I'd need to post anything, but pretty much everyone in my life is telling me I am wrong. I apologize if this is long. I am 55 years old and I've been married for 35 years.

I have one child, a daughter who is 32 years old. I will call her Alice, and she has been with John for 10 years, married 4 years. Alice has always wanted children but they held off to for a while to focus on their careers, but she recently told us they were going to start trying to get pregnant.

I love my daughter and feel I have always been a good father to her, but I admit she and my wife have always had a special bond. This past weekend we went out to dinner with some friends and had a few drinks.

When we got home we had a few glasses of wine, I point this out because my wife rarely drinks so she is a lightweight.

She was tipsy and we were talking about potentially becoming grandparents and she made a comment about Alice's marriage that caught my attention. She said they've "overcome a lot in the marriage" but then stopped herself and didnt continue.

This made me curious because they've only been married 4 years and I wasn't aware of any roadblocks they had run into. Not that they share everything with us. I pressed her on what she meant and finally she confessed that one year into the marriage my daughter cheated with a co-worker.

She tearfully confessed this to my wife a week after it happened because she supposedly felt so guilty. She begged her not to say anything and she kept her word until now. I was blown away because I did not think she would ever do something like that.

I dont know all the details, she got flirty with a co-worker and eventually they slept together once. Then she stopped it and has apparently been faithful ever since.

I did feel some slight guilt because I knew my wife would not have told me if she was sober and I wonder if I should not have pressed her on it, but I can't undo what I learned. I should now point out that when I was a lot younger I was with someone who cheated on me.

I have zero tolerance for cheaters due to that so I might be biased. John is also like a son to me and my wife.

She did ask me not to say anything and this confused me. When she had said they had "overcome a lot" and I found out what happened I had assumed John eventually found out and they worked through it. But no, all she meant was that Alice grew as a person and because a better wife.

I didn't push her any further, I let her go to bed. I had not drank as much, I stayed up all night thinking. I decided then and there that either my daughter would have to confess or I would tell John.

Not only do I think he has a right to know, but I would never be able to interact with him again in a normal manner knowing this secret. I do love my daughter and I also worry about the potential fallout because she is trying to get pregnant and what if John finds out after the child is born?

I feel like he had a right to know. I would not keep it a secret if I found out John cheated on her. The next day was Sunday and I knew I needed to talk to my daughter. My wife was against this, but I did end up having her come over the next day.

It did not go well. First she blew up at her mother for telling me. Then she yelled at me when I told her either she confesses or I am telling John. She said it was none of my business, etc. I disagreed, John is part of the family.

She said I would destroy her life if I did this, she'd hate me, etc. She stormed out. Well I did end up telling John and the fallout is tremendous. John packed his bags and left the home the next day and is apparently refusing to try counseling and intends to pursue divorce.

Everyone hates me, my daughter hates me, my wife is also not on my side. All our family members say I overstepped. I've spoken to some of my friends, and they said I blew up my relationship with my daughter over this. AITA?

Before we provide you with OP's update, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

capnwacky writes:

Let me first stipulate that cheating is the worst, and your daughter super-duper sucks and I'm not remotely "on her side" before the AITA shriekers come out of the woodwork.

But with all of that said, you have made a colossal error in judgement that has probably cost you your marriage and your daughter and I hope this was a hill you were willing to (metaphorically, mods,) die on because that's exactly where you're going to end up.

Unpopular opinion: No, dude, you didn't do the "right thing." Not because she's your daughter or her age or any desire by your wife for grandchildren or any of that. You made a mistake because your daughter was already wracked with guilt about her actions and so overwhelmed she told her Mommy!

Do you have any idea how overwrought an adult has to be to go to their mother? That's apoplectic and in a dangerous emotional place--if I ever went to my mom you could probably call the suicide hotline and hand me the phone.

So she knew she had made a horrible, awful mistake, and knew without a shred of doubt she never, ever ever wanted to make it again. And she likely knew the reason she didn't want to make that mistake again was because she didn't want to hurt her husband!

Which was probably part of her calculus in not telling him in the first place, because he would be horribly hurt, it would ruin both their lives, and serve no purpose other than to ruin both their lives.

The truth about infidelity is that what really hurts the person is the finding out, man. She realized she'd made the worst mistake of her life and had probably breathed a sigh of relief long before and her own father burned her by getting her mother shitfaced and hounding it out of her.

ESH, but at least she engaged in some self-reflection, recognized the error of her ways, and reformed her behavior. You've destroyed the lives of everyone in your orbit on a moral crusade that was NOYFB.

But hey! At least YOU feel morally good about yourself. You've left absolutely everybody around you with the taste of shit in their mouths, but you're great!

roger6 writes:

You’re going to get a lot of people saying N T A, but Reddit, and this sub are biased as hell against cheating, and they forget the complexities of real life and adult relationships.

ESH. So first, obviously you’re daughter shouldn’t have cheated. It’s a shitty thing to do, no getting around that.

But you, so first you manipulate your drunk wife into breaking her daughters trust and telling you a secret you were never meant to hear, that along makes you an A.

Then you use that information to make an ultimatum to your daughter (exposing the broken trust) because YOU can’t live with the secret. I’m sorry but you manipulate a drunk person into exposing information you aren’t meant to know, that’s your burden to carry.

So then you choose to tell John (who’s obviously not an A) because “he had a right to know” now I am a bit torn here, but in this situation it was well in the past, and the experience made your daughter a better wife...

if she was still cheating the answer would be obvious, but in a one-time event tht will NEVER be repeated I really don’t see what’s to gain by telling John.

What did you really accomplish? You broke Johns heart, your daughter hates you for ruining her life, your wife is pissed at you for manipulating her, betraying her, and hurting her daughter. You’ve created a whole lot of pain, and for what exactly?

Obviously your daughter is the one who did the actual hurting, but you still made a choice to expose this and make hurt everyone, you are not entirely innocent here. But hey atleast you’ve got “the truth” I’m sure that will keep your bed warm.

nomorager writes:

YTA. As stated, you are 55 years old. Did your daughter do something wrong? Yes. Should she have told your wife? Apparently not… but at least she should have expected you to be able to control yourself.

You also stated that someone cheated on you… presumably at least 25-30 years ago.

You took a personal experience from when you were basically a teen or maybe in your early 20s and have let that rule your own behaviors at the cost of your daughter’s marriage, your relationship with your daughter, and your own marriage (potentially).

All the people who are now saying “gosh your wife must be hiding something” have a very simplistic view of human relationships. Your wife was protecting her daughter as she should. Your SIL may be “like a son” but he isn’t your son.

Once they are divorced, you may be left with a rapidly distancing relationship with a man who wants to move on… and basically nothing else.

There are people in actual prison who have parents that still have their back and give them unconditional love. You say you love your daughter but it is clearly with specific conditions and now she knows this.

This was a really bad move and I don’t think there is a way back unless you can convince your SIL to give her another chance. That is literally the only way you can fix this.

jmarg6 writes:

Way overstepped here. You will never have enough the same relationship ever again with your daughter or wife. You inserted your “morals and feelings” into somewhere you had no business doing.

ETA: This is not a black and white issue and yes, your daughter did wrong but WTF did you rush to tell the SIL and not let your daughter process this and maybe come to the conclusion that she needs to make this right by telling him. You inserted yourself into the marriage way beyond what you should have.

By you telling the SIL you castrated any chance for her to fix HER mistake. You deserve your mind and morals being clear for telling the SIL but that’s not going to be without enormous consequences.

Your wife will eventually side with your daughter and will divorce you. You will never have the trust and love from your daughter again. I’m just telling you the facts here. I’d plan for your life soon to be in upheaval. Not making any judgments either way but just stating the facts.

lowskelt7 writes:

For someone who claims to not know all the details, you sure seemed to be acting like you did. I know cheating is the absolute worst thing you could ever do according to redit, and infanticide is probably more forgivable, but here's where I think YTA.

You pressed your wife while drunk into divulging a secret your daughter had told her in confidence, knowing full well it was not your business. You have allowed your own past relationship trauma to guide your decision-making at your daughters expense.

You then inserted yourself into your daughters relationship and put your own feelings above either of theirs. You say it was for John, but it sounds like it was mostly because you would feel uncomfortable interacting with him.

When you spoke with your daughter, did you talk to her about what happened and have an open and empathetic conversation, did you take any time to find out why she did it or if it's something she would ever do again or why she never told him at the time?

If she felt so guilty that she tearfully confessed to her mother and has spent the last 3 years working on herself and is now a "better wife" and completely faithful, could you not just tell her how disappointed you are and give her the benefit of the doubt considering it was something you never would have thought she would do in the first place?

I'm not in any way defending your daughters behaviour, and I agree that she should have come clean to her husband. I even agree that you should have told her you knew and that you think she should tell him.

I don't think you should have involved yourself by giving ultimatums in another person's relationship. I don't think you should have told him yourself. At the end of the day, you chose your feelings over your daughters so you could be more comfortable dealing with information that was none of your business in the first place.

You are wrong for being upset that your wife isn't on your side. You knew she was against it before you spoke to your daughter.

You didn't care for her opinion then, or the effect this would have on her relationship with your daughter because you were too busy voicing your moral outrage and justifying your actions because cheating is wrong so you can only be right.

Guess that's the consequences of your actions just like you made your daughter face the consequences of hers.

Then, OP provides this update about his son-in-law's reaction:

The only one showing me any kindness is john, who thanked me for telling him. My wife isnt on my side and I suspect this is because she was hoping for grandchildren. We both were! I just feel like I didn't blow up their relationship, Alice is the one who cheated and lied.

I love her to death and now I wonder if I made the right choice. Should I have just kept this to myself? I have always been friendly with John and we have dinner with them at least once a month, not including holidays or birthdays.

I know I could not interact normally around him and so what should I have done? Ban them both from my home without explanation? Never go to their home again?

And if they have children my wife will definitely want us over there more often, so I dont think I could hide this. I suck at poker, I cant just fake it. So should I have kept quiet? And I guess also am I wrong for being upset my wife isnt on my side?

bearinmind0 writes:

NTA big time. You sure a from a fair nature. Your daughter is the biggest A and your wife kinda is as well. At least on the morally side of life. If I’d find out my daughter and wife did hide this, I’d be disgusted by them.

Your daughter is the only one to blame and how guilty could she have really feel if she didn’t tell him? And now getting angry. She never showed true regret. Fact. Cheating is nothing that just happens, it’s a decision.

You did the right call here, you’re friends are right, but in the end of your life you have to be able to look back and be on terms with the way you lived and what values you had. Not your wife, not your daughter.

resisit8 writes:

ESH, but you really do. Reddit has such black and white thinking when it comes to cheating that you’ve come to the right place to make yourself feel better. But IMO you don’t deserve to feel better and your wife and daughter would be correct to end their relationships with you.

Ask yourself if any of this was really worth it. Blowing up your life. Blowing up a marriage. Had this been an ongoing affair or something that could have any likely effect on their lives now, that would be one thing. But a one time mistake years ago —you didn’t do anyone any good.

Sometimes the past is better off buried where it belongs. This was one of those times. Perhaps you and John can get a place together as I suspect you won’t be married much longer.

salamanderfarm8 writes:

YTA. Not for insisting that the truth comes out, but for chucking a bomb into your family. So you confronted your daughter and wife, and got the unsurprising shocked and angry reaction.

You should have waited a few days for her to calm down and then calmly told her what you have told us: that you love John like a son and will be unable to lie to him. That he deserves to know what happened before you have a family together.

You should have given her a deadline to tell him the truth herself. If she really does feel guilty and loves her husband she would have come around to the right thing to do. If not, you could do what you warned her you would do.

Instead you ran straight off to him and blurted it all out, and the bomb went off. All because you couldn’t love your family enough to help them through this crisis.

Of course John might never have decided to forgive her, but you made darned sure he wouldn’t. You made your choice: you chose John. You have lost your daughter and perhaps your wife. Hope that clear moral compass keeps you warm in your old age.

comicreally0 writes:

Nta for telling john. Your wife likely won’t trust you with a secret since you lasted what 24-48 hours? From your talk with Alice to you telling John.

As for your wife keeping this secret from you maybe it was to save you from the pain of finding out because she knows how you feel about cheating? Some parents do crazy things to protect their children from consequences, and it is okay you were not on your wife’s side.

Then for your daughter, I guess it depends if she needs your support, but I would be prepared for her not to be part of your life anymore if she can make it without you.

That is also okay, you would both have the right to cut out whomever you want from your life you don’t agree with.

Looks like the jury's out here. What do YOU think? Did OP overstep here?

Sources: Reddit
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