At the end of Arthur Miller's The Crucible, Elizabeth refuses to ask John to publicly confess to witchcraft. John has privately admitted, falsely, to the accusations against him. He finds that it may be easier to simply confess that put his family through any further trauma. As part of the confession, John must sign his name to his confession so that it can be placed for the public to see. Not wanting to give up his name, the only thing that is left which cannot be taken from him, John tears up his confession. He refuses to allow it to be posted.
Although Hale begs Elizabeth to persuade John to publicly confess, she refuses. She knows that he has, essentially, lost everything else in his life (because of the affair with Abigail becoming public). Although Elizabeth believes that she is partly to blame for his affair, she does not wish to see him suffer any longer. She does not want to take anything more from her husband than she already has.