Tracey says there are reasons for keeping your mouth shut
This Monday was the day people are most likely to cheat.
The reality is a little under half of us have cheated at some point - regardless of what day it is.
Some people are opportunistic cheaters and jump at a bit on the side whenever it's on offer, even if they're blissfully, happily married.
But most - women particularly - are lured into infidelity during difficult times and end the affair when the marriage becomes stable and satisfying again.
And they are then faced with a moral dilemma: if you've had an affair but it's now over, is it better to come clean or say nothing?
People assume honesty is always the best policy but in this scenario, it's not necessarily true. It depends very much on the circumstances.
If the affair is known or strongly suspected, you're usually better off telling. You won't gain by denying it because you'll probably get found out anyway and you might save the relationship by confessing.
As the late US psychologist and infidelity expert Shirley Glass always said, marriages fare better after a voluntary confession than after an unwanted discovery.
There's also no point in keeping tight-lipped if you're in therapy to save the marriage. What you got from the affair provides vital clues on what may be missing in your relationship.
But there are also valid reasons for keeping your mouth shut.
If your partner is bullying you into a confession - one hand holding your arm, the other a gun - there's a fairly strong argument to lie.
Confession also means you'll be living with someone who sees you as less than perfect - and many can't cope with that. The New Yorker ran a fabulous cartoon featuring a sad-looking man at a bar, drowning his sorrows with the caption, 'My wife understands me'.
Our 'looking glass self' - other people's opinions of us reflected back - influence our self perception. If you don't like the person you see in your partner's eyes, you won't like yourself much either.
Plenty of people who love their partners would much prefer to be kept in the dark if the affair is over
The other rather compelling reason not to tell is this: confessing an affair often makes the person who had it feel better (guilt lessens after a confession) and the innocent partner feel devastated.
Which isn't exactly fair, no matter how you look at it!
It seems wrong to withhold such crucial information from someone you love but, sometimes, doing so saves the relationship.
Staying silent might well save your relationship
I've seen many good marriages shatter when a well-meaning (if not well-behaved) spouse confesses a short-term affair or one-night-stand that meant nothing to them.
Trust is broken and sometimes never regained. The couple split, both of them losing what was essentially a good relationship, children suffer and the 'Why did they tell me? Why didn't they just keep quiet?' question hangs sadly in the air.
Plenty of people who love their partners would much prefer to be kept in the dark if the affair is over, their partner still loves them and deeply regrets what they did.
Confessing under these circumstances often does little but cause intense pain.
If you're labouring under the illusion that confession is 'doing the right thing', don't kid yourself. It may not be.
Besides, it's a bit late now to be moralistic about the situation, given you were the one who cheated!
Not sure what would be best for you? The most important thing to establish (apart from evidence and how much your partner suspects) is why you had the affair in the first place.
What were you getting from it that you aren't getting from the relationship you're in - and is it possible to create that with the person you're married to?
If the answer is yes, staying silent might well save your relationship. And if the burden of carrying your secret feels a little heavy at times, think of it as punishment for betraying a vow.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2259465/If-affair-tell-FEMAIL-sexpert-Tracey-Cox-says-honesty-necessarily-best-policy.html#ixzz2HVIREwLj
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook