As is very often the case, I think people “exposure” and “revenge” and the two have nothing whatsoever to do with one another.
Revenge–would be to take an action purely for the reason of hurting the Disloyal and/or the AP “as much as they hurt you” (the Loyal). The motive is to HURT and HARM (neither of which will save a marriage), and quite often in revenge, the affair is already over so there is absolutely NO BENEFIT to revenge. The poison of it harms the Loyal and eats away at their soul, and the damage it does to the marriage is irreparable.
Exposure–on the other hand–is acting in a way that no longer keeps an active affair “a secret.” As long as the affair is active, and as long as a Loyal silently goes along with it and doesn’t call it what it is or ask for help–they are helping the affair, which is the exact opposite of helping the marriage. So exposure is not from a place of “I’m going to hurt you” but rather from a place of “I refuse to cooperate with adultery by denying that it’s happening and pretending I don’t see you committing it.” Exposure means telling those who will likely be affected by it, such as your parents, your spouse’s parents, your siblings, your spouse’s siblings, maybe lifelong friends if they are people who will help the Loyal cope and tell the Disloyal to end the affair, maybe the pastor or someone you consider your mentor or wise council (because trust me, any Loyal is going to need wise advice), the Loyal’s employer because productivity and concentration are going to be affected, and IF IT IS A WORK AFFAIR, the Disloyal’s employer just so they can cover themselves legally and put an end to use of company resources to support adultery.
It goal of exposure is not publicity or embarrassment. In fact, it’s to provide the truth with as little proof as necessary so they are aware of what’s really going on, so they can help you, help the Disloyal, help the kids and even prepare themselves for the sh!tstorm that is about to hit. Exposure is to shine a light on the thing that has been taking place in the dark, so that when they hear, “S/He and I are getting a divorce…it’s a mutual decision” they’ll know it’s not! Or when your Disloyal tries to say you’re abusive so they HAVE TO leave, they’ll know it’s really to live with the AP!!
Now, look at the court case on this thread: English Courts to Rule on Exposure – Sex texts and intimate photos are “private”. The first thing that jumps out to me is that we have the MarriedWoman (MW), we have the SingleMan (SM) with whom she had the affair, and we the GirlFriend (GF) to whom he is not married. That means that from a legal standpoint GF has no legal claim on him whatsoever. So the GF, who is not legally connected to SM, sent out photos and the graphic texts, along with a THREAT. In addition, the SM was physically violent and threatening with the MW. After getting the equivalent of a restraining order, SM persisted in harassing her at work!
See? That is REVENGE…not exposure. Equating the two does am major disservice to exposure!
Now, had GF sent the compromising photos only to the MW’s husband WHILE THEY WERE STILL ACTIVE IN THE AFFAIR, and said “I have some sad news for you. I have discovered the my boyfriend, SM, and your wife, MW, have been having an affair. I was shocked to find out myself and thought possibly you may think I was just lying, so here is a pic she sent to him. There are tons of emails and chats going back as far as <DATE> but I just wanted you to know the truth because I thought you deserved to know so you could make an informed decision about yourself and your life and your health”…and then never bothered them again, can you see how that is shining the light on the truth and being respectful and honest? There are no threats. There’s no harassment. The goal is to inform and act in a way that may end an active affair.
After the affair is already over, or once there is already a divorce–there’s no point in exposing. That chance has passed! Okay, maybe it would be telling the truth, and the truth isn’t bad, but the effectiveness of using it as a tool to end the affair is passed.
Anyway, hope this helps to clear up the difference between REVENGE and EXPOSURE.