Cheating on spouse question


what is the Catholic guidelines for a protestant wife who is cheating on her catholic husband? she has no intentions of becoming catholic and been married for 8 years.
is it sufficient reason for the husband to file for divorce? or should he suffer and live unhappy with her?


Let me preface this by saying: Please check my advice with a good and holy faithful priest.

From what I understand, their marriage is sacramental (since they are both baptized) and therefore indissoluble. Unfaithfulness on the part of one of the spouses, while it must be incredibly painful, does not justify divorce. This couple should seek a good Catholic marriage counselor and try to work out their problems.

Hope that helps.


Infidelity is not grounds for an annulment so a divorce, on those grounds alone, would not be recommended. What I do recommend is that the individual in question seek out the advice of a good and holy priest or deacon.

Deacon Ed


They can always just separate. Just not live together, and the catholic spouse remain chaste. You should ask your friend if the marriage took place in a Catholic church. Further if the marriage was not presided by a priest or approved by the church then annulment is pretty easy. Just get all the facts together.


the marriage was done in a protestant church. the husband already has an annulment from a 1st marriage where the wife cheated also. so the 2nd marriage was not a catholic wedding - nor had a priest to marry them.


First, I agree with those who have recommended counselling first. It cannot be presumed that this is a lost cause. Second, unless one or both were not free to marry at the time they were married (i.e. the Catholic husband was divorced and did not have an annulment), regardless of the apparent circumstances, the Church must presume that the marriage was sacramental, but that doesn’t mean that it was sacramental, and therefore indissoluble. Only the marriage tribunal can make that determination.

What concerns me is that this is his second marriage where his spouse has cheated. Even if this marriage doesn’t survive, he needs to get godly counselling to look into what else might be going on in his life and for him to heal.


the wife’s religious affiliation has nothing to do with it. the husband needs to see his pastor about making decisions on his own course of action, the first of which will be to seek competent marital counselling to address the underlying issues in the marriage. What he hears from the Catholic priest and counsellors will the aimed at healing and saving the marriage. the issue of validity or annulment would not even arise until there is no hope of reconciliation (such as after civil divorce) so should not even be addressed at this time, and posters who suggest otherwise are premature.


In today’s day with so many sexual diseases, it seems ridiculous to live with someone who cheats. who knows what you will give the other person - and Aids is a big concern. why should the other person die of some disease from a cheating wife.

I don’t think God would want to see his children suffering from sins of the flesh. if it’s not good for the soul, then it’s not good with God either.


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