As is very often the case, I think people confuse “exposure” and “revenge” and the two have nothing whatsoever to do with one another.
Revenge–in this court case and in an affair–would be to take an action purely for the reason of hurting the Disloyal and/or the AP “as much as they hurt you” (the Loyal). The motive is to HURT and HARM (neither of which will save a marriage), and quite often in revenge, the affair is already over so there is absolutely NO BENEFIT to revenge. The poison of it harms the Loyal and eats away at their soul, and the damage it does to the marriage is irreparable.
Exposure–on the other hand–is acting in a way that no longer keeps an active affair “a secret.” As long as the affair is active, and as long as a Loyal silently goes along with it and doesn’t call it what it is or ask for help–they are helping the affair, which is the exact opposite of helping the marriage. So exposure is not from a place of “I’m going to hurt you” but rather from a place of “I refuse to cooperate with adultery by denying that it’s happening and pretending I don’t see you committing it.” Exposure means telling those who will likely be affected by it, such as your parents, your spouse’s parents, your siblings, your spouse’s siblings, maybe lifelong friends if they are people who will help the Loyal cope and tell the Disloyal to end the affair, maybe the pastor or someone you consider your mentor or wise council (because trust me, any Loyal is going to need wise advice), the Loyal’s employer because productivity and concentration are going to be affected, and IF IT IS A WORK AFFAIR, the Disloyal’s employer just so they can cover themselves legally and put an end to use of company resources to support adultery.
It goal of exposure is not publicity or embarrassment. In fact, it’s to provide the truth with as little proof as necessary so they are aware of what’s really going on, so they can help you, help the Disloyal, help the kids and even prepare themselves for the sh!tstorm that is about to hit. Exposure is to shine a light on the thing that has been taking place in the dark, so that when they hear, “S/He and I are getting a divorce…it’s a mutual decision” they’ll know it’s not! Or when your Disloyal tries to say you’re abusive so they HAVE TO leave, they’ll know it’s really to live with the AP!!
To learn more about the difference between exposure and revenge, check out our article: The Difference Between Exposure and Revenge.
6 thoughts on “Exposure vs. Revenge”
How can adulterers expect No Consequences ? Just what is so damaging to a marriage already devastated by adultery that causing whores to be publicly outed by us the innocent ones would cause irreparable damage to what? Recovery? Do you really believe that whores who cause irreparable harm who are in fact marriage wrecking whores to NOT get EXACTLY the emotional trauma they DELIBERATLY gave us are you out of your ever lovin mind? I’m NOT GOD I WANT those slutty whores to LIVE PUBLICLY THE LIFE THEY CHOSE BY THEIR low life actions. This is one of the lowest pieces of “information” I have read in a long time.
In reply to this rant, it is necessary to point out several issues. Initially, though, a couple of observations:
First, it is not difficult to see why this marriage has problems. It’s no surprise that the wandering spouse has turned elsewhere for companionship. The vindictiveness, hatred, and self-absorbed pride evident in this comment indicate a person with whom life is most likely very difficult. Put it this way: the spouse who threatens to beat his wife in order to stop her from leaving is not ‘saving’ his marriage.
Second, at no time was the inference made that there were ‘no consequences’ following an affair. On the contrary, there are many consequences to the choice made to cheat. Opening the comment with a straw man argument like “…How can adulterers expect No Consequences ?…” diminishes any strength the argument may have later. Once a person fails to use logic it is difficult to tell later if they are using it properly at any point.
Moreover, the sentence “How can adulterers expect No Consequences ?…” shows that the author of this comment has probably read nothing else on our site. We encourage everyone to investigate what we do advocate, rather than assuming.
When the author of this diatribe writes that there has been ‘irreparable’ damage to the marriage, the only possible conclusion is that the marriage is over. The damage *cannot* be repaired (the very definition of ‘irreparable’) and as such the necessary step is to proceed to divorce court and legally end the already finished marriage. There is no point, at all, in carrying on with the relationship. To the author of this comment: get a divorce and move on. Your marriage cannot be repaired, there is absolutely no reason to continue with the charade.
In other words, the consequence of the affair is divorce. No other steps are necessary. This again shows the ignorance evidenced in the sentence “How can adulterers expect No Consequences ?”
As an aside, an adulterer may well expect no consequences. Some people are simply not connected to reality. You can expect anything. Expectations often mislead.
On the other hand, if this person actually intends to move on with trying to repair the marriage, then the damage is not ‘irreparable’, and this person has publicly lied about the damage to the marriage. Such a person is hardly one who can call them self ‘innocent’ A liar is never innocent.
This website is written from a Christian viewpoint. The advice given is designed primarily with a Christian life-view in mind. Non-Christians can certainly benefit from our advice – that is one of the side effects of being exposed to the truth. As Christian coaches, our duty is to advise everyone using God’s words as the guide. There is a simple verse to which this entire diatribe must be pointed:
This leaves no room for vengeance for you. Your job is to love – your neighbor, your brother, and your enemy. Loving someone means doing what it absolutely right for them, at all times. It does not involve deliberately hurting them in order to satisfy your own personal lusts, to satiate your own sense of how you have been unjustly treated. It does the other person no good – and even more importantly, it opens the door to a new chapter in the war. If you believe that you are justified in hurting someone because they caused you harm, does it not also become apparent that the person you are now hurting will also come to the same conclusion? The circle simply becomes tighter and tighter, and more and more damage is done, as each person responds to the harm done them – by repaying harm with harm!
The author of the comment in question wrote: “…I’m NOT GOD…” Now, while this is certainly a true statement, the issue is that this person is acting like they ARE God. They are acting as if they have the omnipotent understanding of justice and as such are able to punish those who wrong them with the exact and perfect punishment – that is, they are able to exact justice! In reality, this person has been hurt, and wants to hurt others to make them pay for this. This is an emotional reaction, and the consequence of such action is the guaranteed destruction of any chance they may have to repair their marriage.
But, as I pointed out before, the marriage is over. The commenter stated that the damage is ‘irreparable” – that is, it CANNOT be fixed.
And this brings up the next point: the only reason this person would stay in the marriage is to torture another human being. While the desire to harm those who hurt you is certainly understandable, we would be poor counsel if we neglected to point out that the consequence of this choice is the end of the marriage – even if there was a chance it could have been saved. Ask yourself: what kind of person will marry someone in order to torture them? Is such a person ‘innocent’? Is such a person desirable? Would a sane person marry such a spouse? Would they stay married? Would there be a large chance of cheating?
People do wrong. That’s a fact of life. The point of marriage is to commit to life with another person – even if they do wrong. If you are unable to commit to this, then you had no marriage in the first place. All you had is a State-sanctioned roommate.
Furthermore, the author of this comment wrote: “… the emotional trauma they DELIBERATLY gave us…”. I would like to point out that while there are certainly affairs that are committed to deliberately hurt a spouse, these are very, very rare. Once in a while there is someone who is psychopathic enough to desire to harm others, but it is very rare to find a person who is happy in their marriage decide one day to harm the spouse with whom they are happy. This is sick person indeed! No, more often than not, the reason for the affair has to do with making the self happy – with chasing after a thrill. The consequences are rarely considered – and the reason for the affair is most certainly not done to DELIBERATELY HURT the faithful spouse. Usually, the faithful spouse is almost not considered at all.
However, note that the author of this comment is specifically and deliberately seeking to harm another person – in fact, deliberately seeking to cause pain to their spouse. In what way is this somehow different from what is being charged? “…You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye…” Living filled with self worship and pride is always one step from failure.
There is a point to this extended commentary: the comment to which this is aimed demonstrated a flaw that MUST BE OVERCOME if you ever wish to save your marriage: you must begin to think with clarity and precision. Emotional outburst may well be your accustomed manner of reacting to any situation, but it will never help you move forward in your life. At best, you will stagnate and things will remain the same. That is at best. In most cases, things will simply get worse and worse.
I was 21 weeks pregnant and 3 cms.dialated and NO sex was to save our unborn baby. Not learning about that and numerous other pros/hoho’s as my addicted husband addicted himself to lies and the rush of getting something worth nothing for some lies and sperm hmmm and you call me a torturer? Really all I asked for was the truth and 21 months of TT and gaslighting outright stupid idiotic lies a 3 year old could do better making up . I have been tortured by lies deceit betrayal and you can’t even give me ONE reason to hide these nasty ugly things from being public . If I wanted revenge or vengeance I would have done that. I believe GOD has that covered. I was raised to know EVERY ACTION / choice has consequences some good some bad that’s how we learn to make the right choices . The consequences are not yours or mine to choose only our deliberate action is ours to choose. I wouldn’t think to tell you what to do yet you as a Christian bashed me for my questions about YOUR use of the word irreparable damage ? I’m not sure you read your bible as the definition of whores and prostitutes is covered as def Not bride or wife material. My heart is in Gods loving care as it will continue to be.
Please read this with care, make an attempt to avoid leaping to conclusions:
First thing – it is irrelevant how many people a wandering spouse has sex with outside of the marriage. It is irrelevant what their professions are. All that matters is that the spouse has been unfaithful. Nothing excuses this behavior, it is always wrong, in all it’s forms.
Second, a torturer who tortures a torturer is still a torturer. The end does not justify the means. You have missed the entire point of the article: that there is a difference between exposing an affair and seeking revenge. If you took the time to read some of our other articles, you would see how exposure works.
You state that we haven’t given you ONE reason to hide these ‘nasty ugly things’ from being public. We ask a a question in return – what makes you think we want you to hide these ‘nasty ugly things?’ Why should you? Perhaps if you read the blog article again…
We are talking about the REASON you reveal these things – which again points to the reason I replied to your comment at all – a marriage is only served in a positive way be clear thinking. Until you are thinking clearly (and for a Christian, this means thinking Biblically) you will only be damaging your marriage. Hence, we always advise that the first thing you do upon discovering an affair is to step back, slow down, and begin to think; think before you act.
You mention that you have been ‘tortured’ by “outright stupid idiotic lies a 3 year old could do better making up…”
May we point out that if the lies are so obvious, how can this be called torture? Would it not be more correct to show that you have tortured yourself with unreasonable expectations? You WANT your husband to tell you the truth, you are expending enormous amounts of energy WILLING your husband to tell the truth – as if you can somehow magically WILL him into acting in a way that he is not? The torture is when YOU spend you time grinding your teeth because he isn’t behaving the way you are willing him to act.
The torture is yours, dealt to yourself. You will find peace when you learn that you cannot cause your husband to behave the way you want. The torture will end when you quit expecting him to tell you the truth. You already know these are lies (a 3 year old could do a better job!). He will only tell you the truth when he wants to, and only if he thinks it is to his benefit. That may never happen. YOU can’t change him. All you can do is change YOU. You can change where you live, with whom you deal, and you can control your actions.
The reason I replied to your post was not to attack you, but to wake you up. You claim you are a Christian. How did Jesus treat whores and prostitutes? Keep in mind that they are lost and need salvation. On top of this, they are only doing their job. The real culprit here – as I pointed out above – is your husband, who is being unfaithful. HE, not whores and prostitutes, is harming your marriage, and it seems to us that you are doing your un-levelheaded best to help him do that.
As for the declaration that the Bible says whores and prostitutes are not bride or wife material – I suggest you read Hosea. There are exceptions. Moreover, I suggest that you consider that we, as Christians, are the bride of Christ, and that every time we sin, consider how Christ treats us in this regard!
Again, I suggest you read the blog article again: you called it “one of the lowest pieces of ‘information’ you have read in a long time”. Yet your comments here are saying much the same thing.
You inferred that we believe that there are NO consequences to an affair. And yet we point out throughout numerous articles just what consequences there are.
Also – you stated that ‘whores’ caused ‘irreparable harm’ to your marriage. Note – they did not – your husband caused damage to the marriage – which you have declared ‘irreparable.’
If your marriage has been ‘irreparably’ harmed, this means that it CANNOT BE SAVED. Your only option is divorce. And again, I point out that if you stay in a marriage that CANNOT be saved, the only reason is to spend the rest of your relationship torturing your spouse – possibly by using guilt to control, possibly simply to make his life miserable because he made your life miserable, possibly some other form.
Where does Scripture authorize such behavior?
I was also taught as everyone on earth is a sinner ( your word hypocrite means the same thing) I am not perfect . As the innocent one I am married I chose to honor God ,my self,my husband,my marriage, my children I did not drop my morals , or my pants for such unworthy , immoral, fantasy . My husband is sick he is an addict nothing changes it only what he is addicted to changes. He will never know the terroristic sadistic torture his double life means for MY LIFE yearly tests for HPV yes it causes cancer it kills he infected me and every pro/hoho who felt the need to be married yet have sex with my husband . To our family he lied to cover for him so he could “do what he wanted he knew it was wrong he didn’t care ” . Why lie to my friends just to have sex ? You say revenge for what ? I say tell the public a pro/hoho is an adultering whore as in their family who they hid it from why when my elderly parents , my children , my self , my church families, my grandchildren why hid his lies from his whores? Just who is the truth going to destroy? They knew we were married they deliberately chose to have sex on our bed in our home excuse me for running low on the love and compassion since it has been drained dry tollerance is about all I have at this time and the knowledge love is a verb it requires action a daily sometimes hourly commitment to love this stranger who looks so much like the man I love .