*Dear Tamara:

How do you confront a spouse about a rumor you heard about them?

Suspicious

Dear Suspicious:

First of all, a rumor is just that, a RUMOR. A speculation, accusation, or something that has NOT YET been proven. And in many cases, a rumor can be a flat out lie. I would be careful when confronting anyone with a rumor, especially someone I love, care about, and have made a commitment to spend the rest of my life with.

That being said, if there was something that was bothering me and that I needed to discuss it with my spouse, I would be like Nike, and just do it! I have no problem talking with my spouse about anything, especially something that could possibly affect the relationship in a negative way. Beating around the bush often builds up anxiety, frustration, and in your case, more suspicion.

Confronting an issue head on can relieve unnecessary stress is often the best way to get to the reality of the situation. The key to confronting someone is in your attitude and tone. Don’t approach someone with a rumor as if it is the absolute truth and something you have already made a ruling on.

Furthermore, be careful of getting caught up in rumors and idle gossip! I have seen relationships destroyed over “he-say-she-say.” And at the same time, you have to have discernment about the person relaying the rumor and their reasons and/or motives for telling you! What’s that saying…”A dog that will bring a bone will carry one…or is it eat one?  LOL whatever, I’m not really sure, but you get my drift! You just have to be careful and use good judgment!

Author of the upcoming book Been There Done That: And Lived to Tell About It (due out Spring 2011), Tamara R. Allen is Your Advice Guru giving REAL advice from REAL experience. Email your questions to asktamara@tamararallen.com. You can follow Tamara on twitter @tamararallen or check out her daily column and archives at www.tamararallen.com.