Dating, Relationships, & Sex, Theory & Essay

Ask A Very Smart Brotha: I Cheated On Him Some Time Ago. Should I Tell Him?

***The Champ’s latest at Madame Noire includes questions and answers from his weekly Facebook chat***

Jasmine: What is the most reasonable time period in which a woman should receive a proposal from her boyfriend?

DY: I don’t believe in an arbitrary set time for things like that. But, I will say if you’re in your late 20s and above, just “dating” for longer than two years probably isn’t the best look

Nita: Who comes first in your life, your wife or your mother?

DY: Wife. In my opinion, a wife comes before everyone else, including children

Cynthia: Why do today’s men want women to take care of them?

DY: Men, by in large, follow the path of least resistance. Basically, (some) men expect women to take care of them because (some) women are willing to do it.

Shahdae: Is it okay to date more than one guy at a time?!

DY: Of course! Dating is supposed to be when you’re out meeting people and finding out what you like/don’t like and need/don’t need. How are you going to do that if you don’t date multiple people?

Clarissa: If you cheat and know you made a mistake should you tell your man or take it to the grave?

DY: Honestly, it depends on when. If this happened some time ago and he’s unlikely to find out—and you know it won’t happen again—I think you should keep it to yourself. Although it seems “honorable,” letting a person know about something they’d never hear about otherwise—something that would definitely hurt them—would likely be more about you having a clear conscience and feeling better than anything else.

But, if this happened recently, you probably need to tell him because your sexual behavior has put him at risk. He needs to know that. Either way, your first step should be to get tested.

Read more at Madame Noire

Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for and EBONY Magazine. And a founding editor for 1839. And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at Or don't. Whatever.

  • rooseveltdunn

    So dark the con of woman…

    • Wild Cougar

      Dark con?

      • rooseveltdunn

        its a da Vinci code reference.

  • blackphilo

    Maybe I don’t get how this advice business works. Is the opinionator expected to give support for his views–or he is functioning more like an oracle (a’ la Negrodamus)?

    Case in point: “Nita: Who comes first in your life, your wife or your mother? DY: Wife. In my opinion, a wife comes before everyone else, including children.”

    What does it mean to say that “a wife comes before everyone else”? In which respects? Why, especially as compared to children? By the logic of this view, for example, should a man with children from a previous relationship become less involved in their lives because his new partner/wife prefers that she, not they, be the primary focus of his time and emotional energy?

    I’m not trying to be argumentative: I’m just trying to understand.

    • mirabella

      Not sure I agree with the answer either. But maybe because a wife/husband/pattner is a lifelong relationship (hopefully) while with your children, you know they will leave and do their own thing one day.

      Even the law recognises the rights of husband/wife/partner more than the rights of adult children.

    • I think a good wife will never force you to make that decision.

  • Never

    Let’s put the SHOULD aside (I do respect and agree with the answer). Am curious, for those women who are willing to respond: WOULD you tell him? Cheating = everything up to (er, down to) and including oral. Statute of limitations parameters…3 months?

  • mirabella

    The hell with a clear conscience. You cheated on someone, you should tell them. What if it was reversed and he cheated on you? You would want to know.

    • Nah. I wouldn’t want to know. For what?

      • Marshal

        Me either, if it’s On-Going then that’s a Different Thing

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