Now I'm thinking this may have all been in an effort to get close to my wife. So maybe not so "nice" after all.
That's what I was thinking.
"Nice" like accurate -- smoothie talkin' person just doing what it takes to get her own way.
On the "surface" friendly as long as it serves her purposes, but not genuinely friendly.
It certainly is not "friendly" to put you and your partner as accessories to a cheating affair. And it is not "friendly" to be feeding your partner lies, or "massaged" lies so they go down more tasty. Your partner is NRE drunk (at best, but still lame reason to choose to participate in a cheating affair) or just not caring about anyone (worst) -- you or the wife!
I would not burst a strangers' bubble, when they chose not to confront a difficult issue (yet?), just so I could feel better about myself while ignoring the fact that they, and everyone around them- kids included, would only suffer.
My point was that you only know information about their marriage situation FROM THE LYING C.
She only says
"she tried to talk to her wife about the marriage problems but the wife shut her down." Did you get a verify from the wife that this is actually true? This conversation actually took place? Nope. I'm not hearing that.
So why believe what the liar said
about the state of the marriage?
It's more attractive sounding for YOUR partner to hear "Oh, my wife doesn't understand me" type stuff or "My wife alienated me first" type stuff. That's classic cheater talk. It lures people in with their charm and goes down tastier than "I'm a two faced liar who keeps my wife in the dark about my cheating. Can I get into your pants now?"
On telling the wife... we have to differ on that one then. Because I think they ALREADY suffer. They are just unaware. Like cancer then, if not fire. Wife does not yet know the relationship is not healthy. But it is so there.
I would want to know if my partner were cheating on me. Someone who lies about cheating can lie about using protection when cheating too. Then they are putting MY body at risk when they have unprotected sex with ME. And that (given the right disease) could kill me.
But if you want to shelve it at this time, shelve it at this time. Think about it later -- you have your own problems.
If a week's "time out" is too short for you to come to the next decision take the time you need. Everyone is different. It was just a suggestion.
DO process and keep moving it forward. Could guard against anyone (C or your partner) smoothie talkin' you or playing on your soft feelings for your partner. This is messy -- look out for more smoke and mirrors.
I am glad you are in separate rooms and your "I am not on board with this" is being felt at home. There's consequences to choosing this, not just "losing respect." Let her feel that.
Hang in there,