Join the debate. Vote Now on the Dear Abby Poll of the week.

by Abigail Van Buren

Anonymous Tip May Not Be the Best Way to Out a Cheating Spouse

DEAR ABBY: I have observed (and experienced) that people won't tell you about a husband's or wife's infidelity while you and your spouse are together. However, they WILL reveal it after the divorce or death. What purpose does that serve?

If people don't want to get involved, then allow me to make a suggestion: Send an unsigned letter in the mail with no return address. There are also phone features that let a person place an anonymous call. Call the workplace of the cheated-on spouse if you don't have his or her cellphone number. However you can, give the person as much information as you know. If you do, maybe a marriage can be saved, or a spouse won't have to deal with an STD. Do you have an opinion, Abby? -- STRICTLY ANONYMOUS

DEAR STRICTLY ANONYMOUS: People who feel compelled to tell others something "for their own good" should closely examine their motives before doing it. Unsigned letters with no return address are usually sent by cranks trying to target someone they want to hurt, or to destroy a marriage. If someone takes it upon him- or herself to notify a spouse about a mate's cheating, that person should be honest enough to state who he/she is. If people can't do that, they should mind their own business.

While some wives -- or husbands -- may be ignorant about their spouse's infidelity, the truth is that many already do know something is wrong, but are not yet ready to deal with it.

Read more in: Marriage & Divorce | Friends & Neighbors