Saturday, March 19, 2011

Cheating

You know you try your best not to judge until you "walk a mile in their shoes" but man, there seems to be a whole lot of cheating going on! Is it just inevitable? Or is it just that we have better tools to "discover" the indiscretions?

Just this week, a good friend informed me after over 20 years together, she found out her husband has been cheating on her. What's worse, she is now questioning if it's been going on for years with different women.

She said had it not been for technology, she may have never found out.

She started to wonder why the phone was always left in the basement so she woke up one evening, snuck downstairs to eavesdrop and realized her husband was carrying on an intimate relationship with the woman at the other end of the phone.

She further then cracked into his email, and found the proof.

Until then, she had never had a reason to suspect anything, never thought he could be unfaithful.

This is not the first friend to whom this has happened, just the most recent in a long line. And not just females, men as well.

What IS commitment after all? We women are told it's a dirty word. It is to some women too.

Do you have to be married to expect someone not to sleep around? How long can that possibly last? Sex with just one person, your entire life?

The thing that my friend said struck me though. Even though she is incredibly sad, she's not angry. At least not yet! She says she just has lost respect for him.

Is it about respect? When you are betrayed, can you respect that person again?

What about when simply dating? Are all bets off? Unless you are committed in some sort of verbal contract, the sky's the limit on sleeping around?

I cannot tell you how many times I've seen it happen. A woman is "dating" a guy, and thinks it's going well, but suspects he slept with someone else. He denies it, prime ass coverage. The woman has a gnawing feeling he's not telling the truth but ignores it, trusts what he is saying is the truth. Inevitably she finds out he was cheating but he says they weren't "serious" so she shouldn't have expected anything different. And what of the "other" woman? Does anyone enjoy being someone's "dirty little secret"?

I use the woman scorned as the example, as in my experience, it's typically the woman who develops feelings even if they both agree the relationship is a "casual" one.

But even if a couple makes it past the "dating" stage and ends up in a common law or married relationship, there's no guarantee. No piece of paper nor tax write-off is going to keep someone from being unfaithful.

How do you know? What's the indicator?

A male friend of mine said that the rules are so different now, things are so incredibly casual, and people use it to their advantage. Maybe so but I have another theory.

I think so many people are "walking wounded". They are so incredibly hurt from previous trust breaches that they protect themselves at every cost, even if that means denying themselves true deep love, allowing someone in. Lots of sex with different partners is fun for awhile, but it gets empty pretty fast but it's easy and immediate, virtually no work involved.

In the case of my friend, she keeps saying her husband has always been selfish. He has always done exactly what he wanted to do, while she supported the family, the kids. If he didn't like his job, he quit without a thought of how it would affect the family unit. She was the breadwinner AND the caretaker while he pursued whatever he wanted and as it turns out, whomever he wanted. You can argue she made that choice, she knew, she continued. But like alot of us, once you make that commitment, marriage, you're in it for the long haul.

I guess the answer is, you really just have to trust your gut. If you feel like someone is a jackass, they likely are. If you feel like they're sleeping around, they probably are. Most of us just don't want to believe it.

Honesty and trust are almost like curse words. Why are people afraid to expect those things from someone?

I guess if we respect ourselves, then others will respect us too. Unless we treat ourselves well, how can we demand someone else does?

But that means walking away, before the cheating happens, when you first get that feeling. That's a really hard thing to do.

Not only are people "walking wounded" but they're also experiencing "skin hunger", which is different from plain old sex, it's holding each other skin to skin. Intimacy. Another curse word. It seems too scary for people to be that vulnerable. That's sad.

So how do you know if someone's going to be a cheater? You don't. You just roll the dice, hope for the best, and trust your gut. Some people say they just "know" when they're with their soul mate.

I think there's alot of truth to that. However, you just never know.

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