Anglo-Saxon Western nations are just fucked up when it comes to marital infidelity. Is it awesome? No. Is it human? Yes. Is it worth destroying your partnership and your children’s lives over?
Monogamy means you are married to one person. You hunt about for a bit, find a suitable candidate whom you love (presumably) and who loves you in return and you get married. Full fucking stop. You build a family, build your wealth and enjoy each other as much as possible.
Infidelity has nothing to do with monogamy. Infidelity means one of you fucked someone who wasn’t the other. Big fucking deal. There are different types of infidelity, too. When your husband goes on conference to Budapest and pays some Ukrainian hooker to blow him, that’s NOT infidelity. It’s entertainment. It has nothing to do with you at all. She was there, it was fun, who fucking cares? And when you head to Cuba for a week with the girls, all freshly waxed and let the pool boy explore your depths with his tongue, that isn’t infidelity either. It’s payment for not punching the aesthetician when she covered your pubes in hot wax and ripped them out by the roots! Motherfucker! You totally deserve a hot Latin 20 year old!
A more worrisome infidelity is an affair of the heart, but that shouldn’t be a deal breaker, either. Are you an accountant? Do you love numbers and order and neat columns of figures that all add up? Is your husband a jazz musician? Does he love chaos and improvisation and the wildness of the wind section? It’s okay. You love him for the balance he brings to your life. He helps you stop and see the sunlight streaming through the clouds. You help him by making sure the fucker gets paid jesus someone has to pay the utility bill! You are lost without each other. Sigh. So romantic.
So one night he hooks up with a fellow musician and they just get each other. He can talk to her about stuff that would make you wonder how bad, really, could it be, to leap off the 23rd floor? He fucks her. Every week. For five years. Her insanity makes him come home to you, grateful for your stability and strength and knowledge of internet banking. With her, he is wild and crazy and free and open and creative. And with you, he lives. Breathes. Exists.
And then when you are off at a GAAP conference, you meet a tall handsome stranger who debates regulations with you fiercely. Fuck he’s hot. One WTO draft agreement later and he is naked with his head between your legs and you are suddenly pretty excited about the next conference. After an exhausting 72 hours of mind-blowing orgasms and detailed analyses of the Lehman restructuring, you get home to your husband and he plays you your favourite song and you can’t believe how much you missed him.
And when he picks up your phone (by accident) and reads those texts, and when you decide to surprise him after the set wearing a trench coat and a smile and you both discover what the other has been up to, there will be tears. Yes, it will hurt.
Here’s the thing: no one single person will ever be able to fulfil every part of you that needs filling. Not Going. To. Happen.
But you don’t throw away years of love and commitment and affection and sharing because you have a need your partner can’t meet. You don’t own him. He doesn’t own you. You exist separately of one another. And finding some small corner of the world to add to the love in your life is not just reasonable, it’s beautiful.
You don’t destroy your life because he fucked someone else. Or even because he loved someone else, once a week for an hour. And he shouldn’t punish you, either. And if you have children together, then this is doubly, triply, infinitely more true. You do not get to destroy their lives because you can’t be a fucking grown up and understand some basic truths about human beings.
Divorce destroys children. Rips them apart. I’m even NOT going to debate it. Google it yourself! Do I look like a fucking librarian?
Here’s what you do when your partner cheats: you ask yourself: can I meet this need? HE HAS A RIGHT TO HAVE NEEDS. And to have them met. And if you ain’t gonna do it, then bitch please, move aside. Just a little. And when you find yourself eyeing up that gorgeous actuarial in the gingham shirt, ask yourself: can the man at home meet this need? Because you have a right to have needs too. And to have them met.
One thing though: DON’T HUMILIATE YOUR PARTNER! Keep it on the down low. Parade your fuckbuddy in front of the neighbors and you will officially suck it hard! And for the love of fucking god, do not destroy your children because you’re having a tantrum. Suck it up. Get over it. You don’t own him. Show him he doesn’t own you either. Revenge is a dish best served on the naked abdomen of a poolboy!
with love, JB