Can I Sue for Defamation and Emotional Distress? (2023)

Visitor Question

Submitted By: Berti (Takoma Park, MD)

I have a question about a case dealing with marital problems. I do not know how intimate my husband has gone with this girl, I need help to let her know her limits and stop intruding in my home affairs.

She calls him at least 3 times every day and he never denies her any favor. He now takes my son to spend the weekend with her and I can’t let this continue. He says she is lonely and when I called her to tell her to stop she said she doesn’t know me.

I want to sue her for insulting me, saying I have been pretending and sleeping around and asking me who the father of my son is. I want my husband to take the DNA test and then press charges on her for defamation. She sent it in a text message in my phone. I want to sue for the emotional distress I have gone through because of her, and press charges.

My husband has even slept out 3 times because I accused him of having an affair with her. For over a year we argue about her at least 3 times in two weeks. I need her out of the life of my husband and kids. Can I sue for emotional distress, invasion of privacy, defamation and for her calling me a vile names? I need to do something. Thank you.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Berti,

Yes you can sue her. Defamation would not be the initial or most important basis of your lawsuit though. The initial basis should be breach of contract. The law considers marriage a contract between two people. If a 3rd party comes along and manipulates either the husband or wife to breach the terms of the marriage contract then the party who interfered (the girl) can be considered by the law to have “Tortiously Interfered” with the marriage contract.

Tortious Interference with a Contract is not a crime; rather it is a civil matter. As part of your lawsuit you can ask the Judge to award you additional money for the mental anguish (emotional distress) the girl’s actions have caused you.

The law does not permit you to sue because the girl called you vile names. There is an exception though. If any one of the girl’s statements accused you of a crime of “moral turpitude” such as calling you a thief, a drug dealer, a person who sleeps around, or a prostitute, to name a few, then you can sue for Defamation of Character.

In your case instead of filing two lawsuits, you can file one and in the lawsuit ask for damages for Interference with the Marriage Contract. As a result of the girl’s interference you can ask the Judge to award you money for the Mental Anguish you have endured from the day this whole matter began.

If you have already told her, or you start telling her now, not to call you any more and she continues to call, you can contact the police and tell them you want to report a Crime called “Telephone Harassment”. You can also seek a Temporary Restraining Order against her asking the court to order her to stop calling your home. If she violates the terms of the TRO she can also be arrested. You may have some difficulty convincing the police she harassed you if any of the calls were to your husband, and not to you.

Nevertheless you still can legitimately sue for Telephone Harassment and Defamation of Character. Other than that Berti all you can do is hope she goes away on her own.

Learn more here: Liability for Defamation of Character

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney.

Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call 888-972-0892.

We wish you the best with your claim,

Injury Claim Coach

Published: September 11, 2017

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  1. Can I Sue for Defamation and Emotional Distress? (1)Robin says:

    April 20, 2021 at 1:44 am

    Can I sue my coworker for texting my wife telling her I’m cheating on the job?


  2. Can I Sue for Defamation and Emotional Distress? (2)Caroline says:

    September 27, 2020 at 6:24 pm

    I was married for 25 yrs to my husband. His ex wife got their divorce but she kept on harassing him for more and more money. My husband got AML in 2019, and till his death his ex keep on about more money.

    My husband passed away Nov 7, 2019 and now she is coming after me for money she claims was owed to her. She has even called to harass me.

    I want to sue her for defamation and emotional distress. I feel she killed my husband by harassing him until his death. This has caused me pain and suffering and emotional distress. Can I sue her?


  3. Can I Sue for Defamation and Emotional Distress? (3)Pissed off Wife of 26 Years says:

    August 5, 2020 at 9:10 pm

    I am in California. I’d like to sue the woman my husband was having an affair with. I have numerous supporting documentation, including a paid flight and hotel trip to Vegas, a video of them together and have caught them together numerous times, etc. etc.

    She is currently trying to claim I damaged her car. The alleged damage occurred in December 2019 and the auto body report was for June 2020.

    Additionally, I feel I have PTSD. Every time I see her or her type of car my heart rate increases. I even have recorded heart rate readings over a period of time showing it going over 140-160 and up.


  4. Can I Sue for Defamation and Emotional Distress? (4)Ms.P. says:

    June 8, 2016 at 2:39 am

    Mine is similar, but a bit more…

    I had a short fling on my husband 2 years ago, my husband badgered me until I confessed, but I did not leave. I wanted to work things out, he forgave me, we went to counseling.

    I was treated so badly by him for 6 months, then 5 months later I found out he’d been having an affair a year prior to mine and was still involved…all the while telling me we could make up for mine.

    In the 6th month he told me he wanted a divorce, so then he gets aggressive towards me due to his girlfriend and our former friend, because I didn’t agree to walk out and ask for nothing.

    He gets back at me with our 3 grown kids and their spouses, he told me he would have the kids, he’s managed to turn all of them against me due to his sociopathic personality.

    We’ve been married for 37 years so yes this has been devastating to me with everything that’s happened. I’m wondering if I can I sue his girlfriend


  5. Can I Sue for Defamation and Emotional Distress? (5)Anonymous says:

    April 1, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    If you are enduring mental anguish from being indirectly involved with a marriage that is souring and going through divorce, i.e. dealing with Husband and Wife about whats going on.

    Basically, could I sue the female for the things she is doing and/or saying to the husband that is indirectly affecting me?


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