Should the confidence of friends ever supercede the trust of a marriage?

Visitor's Question from a 31-40 year old Male
I recently had a friend tell me something in confidence. He specifically asked me not to tell my wife. Later, in a conversation with my wife she asked me a direct question about what my friend had told me in confidence. I "betrayed" my friend and told my wife the truth. Should the confidence of friends ever supercede the trust of a marriage? Is it okay to lie to my spouse in a situation like this? This is a dilema where my wife and I hold different views. For her, honesty in marriage supercedes any bonds of friendship. For me, the trust of a friend should be upheld as long as it does not directly affect my wife or me. Help? Advice
There's no good answer to this one that won't get you in trouble with someone.

I personally take the opinion that the confidence of anyone should be held, whether a guy on the streetcorner or your best friend or your wife. You should be honorable to them all. The conflict comes in when a secret needs to be told to someone else, like if someone is threatening harm to themselves. Then there are the gray areas, where a friend is cheating with the wife of another friend. Where is the loyalty then? However, that's not the issue right now, thank god.

If the facts of the secret do not at all impact on your wife, then I feel that you don't have an obligation to tell her.

But you're the one who has to sleep with her at night.... I'd tell her anything she wants to know.

-- from Marc
One of Your Friendly Advisors at

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