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Posts Tagged ‘infidelity’

Marriage masks?There a whole lotta blah, blah going on about marriage, its “holy bonds”, traditional roles, legal entanglements, etc., and I’ve done my share of blathering.

Yesterday’s post on infidelity, for example, was at least partially about pondering on the whole monogamy issue, the skirting around that happens to the tune of millions of bucks for modern-day cyber pimps and some offered thoughts that adultery dulls divorce tendencies.

Yes, marriage and partnerships of all sorts are a hot-button topic these days as many struggle to rearrange everything from expectations to laws. Although there is a strong tendency to hold to tradition, it’s harder to do that every year as society shifts radically.

Historically, it wasn’t all that long ago that ending a marriage by any method but death was almost unheard of. No matter the circumstances, marriage was a life sentence, and although that conveyed some stability the price was often higher than many wished they’d signed on for.

It wasn’t until 1979 that the USA shit-canned the last of the Head and Master laws, an appalling mandate based upon the “legal definition of marriage” that, “delegated the husband’s role as supporting the family and the wife’s as housekeeping, childrearing, and providing sex.”

“Head and Master” laws were a set of American property laws that permitted a husband to have final say regarding all household decisions and jointly owned property without his wife’s knowledge or consent, until 1979 when Louisiana became the final state to repeal them. Until then, the matter of who paid for property or whose name was on the deed had been irrelevant.

They meant the wife had no say over where or how a family lived, and a woman who refused to move at her husband’s demand could be sued for abandonment.

Some are still pissed off about the movement Betty Friedan started back in the ’60s with an article in “Good Housekeeping” shockingly titled Women are People, Too, blaming the women’s movement for the disintegration of the American family, but anyone with a firm grasp of the history … not just “Leave it to Beaver” episodes … in their head understands the costs at which families were held together before there were options.

The voices of tradition and the voices of Freudian sophistication tell us that we can desire no greater destiny than to glory in our role as women, in our own femininity. They tell us how to catch a man and keep him; how to breast-feed children and handle toilet training, sibling rivalry, adolescent rebellion; how to buy a dishwasher, cook Grandmother’s bread and gourmet snails, build a swimming pool with our own hands; how to dress, look, and act more feminine, and make marriage more exciting; how to keep our husbands from dying young and our sons from growing into delinquents.

They tell us — the psychologists and psychoanalysts and sociologists who keep tracing the neuroses of child and man back to mother — that all our frustrations were caused by education and emancipation, the striving for independence and equality with men, which made American women unfeminine. They tell us that the truly feminine woman turns her back on the careers, the higher education, the political rights, the opportunity to shape the major decisions of society for which the old-fashioned feminists fought.

Now a thousand expert voices pay tribute to our devotion from earliest girlhood to finding the husband and bearing the children who will give us happiness. They tell us to pity the “neurotic,” “unfeminine,” “unhappy” women who once wanted to be poets or physicists or Presidents, or whatever they had it in them to be. For a woman to have such aspirations, interests, goals of her own, the experts keep telling us, impairs not only her ability to love her husband and children but her ability to achieve her own sexual fulfillment.

That was written in 1963.

Of course, we still have many issues to deal with … domestic abuse, infidelity, unequal divisions of power and money, to name just a few … but the stranglehold of traditional values has loosed its grasp.

We don’t have to marry at all if we’d rather not, and not marrying no longer means a life of chaste spinsterhood. If we do marry, and marry badly, divorce is a viable option, much to the chagrin of those who see the option as the cause. (Often the same people who see sex education as the motivating factor in making teens horny … yeah … right … )

When we commit to a relationship we now have bargaining power, the result of which can be healthier, more productive partnerships.

Some will argue that children suffer under an opt-out system, but those who grew up in abusive and/or dysfunctional family units glued together by dictates outside the front door could present their suffering and scars for examination. Sure, a two-parent cohesive family is cool, but how many of those are there?

Laws have changed. Women have changed. Families have changed. Traditional roles have changed.

Good.

And while we’re on the topic of marriage, tradition, laws and change, same-sex marriage gets a mention, as well.

One argument against same-sex marriage arises from a rejection of the use of the word “marriage” as applied to same-sex couples, as well as objections about the legal and social status of marriage itself being applied to same-sex partners under any terminology. Other stated arguments include direct and indirect social consequences of same-sex marriages, parenting concerns, religious grounds, and tradition.

Sounds like the same load of shit that kept those “Head and Master Laws” in place for a ridiculously long time.

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I heard a story the other day about a woman who recently found herself standing in a pair of my three-year-old shoes … shoes that were feeling very comfortable until the day they sliced my feet off and left me to hobble on bloody stumps.

Members of the confab gathering around … apparently a lot of us wear the same sized slippers … have asked for my thoughts. They tell me she’s around my age and had been thinking herself well-married, happy, safe only to learn that her devoted husband had shifted his devotion from her to someone else.

She was blindsided … a very nasty way to take a blow … completely unprepared for the drastic change to life, and in the man she’d considered for many years a life partner.

“Who is this guy, and what did he do with my husband?” is the question she’s asking now, and with good reason since “this guy” is nothing like that guy. Or is he? Can you really miss that much in someone you’ve been sleeping beside night after night for decades? Apparently, yes.

With interesting timing, this article came across my radar this morning. Titled “He’s the One Who Cheated and Left; So Why is He So Angry At You?”, if nothing else, it proves that those old shoes sure get around.

I couldn’t understand why my ex never expressed remorse for what he’d done to me, just regret at what our daughter suffered. He’d always been extremely concerned about me while we were married, worried about my health, mental and physical. He’d always apologized every time he blew up at me. I was stunned at his coldness. He did say to me on various occasions that he felt “guilty” but he never apologized or showed any empathy for my suffering.

Sound familiar?

I don’t know the newly-dumped woman, so am in no position to give a hug and add to the chorus now teaching her the words to “I Will Survive” and encouraging her to sing at the top of her voice.

Not that she’s there yet. It takes time to move from “alone and petrified” to “savin’ all my lovin’ for someone who’s lovin’ me” … a LOT of time.

Unfaithful husbands–even husbands who have always been loving– can be inexplicably brutal. The incongruence between you makes it all worse. He’s already found a new partner, and doesn’t feel the loss of the marriage. You, on the other hand, are shattered, terrified of the future and collapsing on friends and relatives. His happiness is the unkindest cut of all. He’s already detached from you, or is in the process of detaching, which makes him excruciatingly insensitive.

Apparently, there are reasons for the excruciating insensitivity … not that it’s any excuse for it:

“Infidelity is harder on women, who are more vulnerable to feelings while men are a law unto themselves,” explains psychoanalyst Simone Sternberg. “Men don’t allow themselves to empathize with women’s suffering. It’s too threatening. Also underneath male supposed indifference or even hostility is self-hate which they project onto the wife. They can’t afford to empathize or they’ll have to experience the full force of that emotion.”

Well, whoopiefuckingdoo …

Oops. Sorry. Okay. Not sorry … and still pissed off when I allow myself to dwell, but, hey, I’m entitled to my feelings, too. There is, after all, such a thing as consequences, as William Congreve noted way back in the 1600s:

“Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned,
Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned.”

Being burned leaves scars that can itch and tug and it’s not in any furious, scorned woman’s mandate to forgive or forget, only to get on with it.

That’s about my only advice to anyone finding their feet now bound in those old shoes … get on with it. There’s nothing else you can do. Suck on the bitter pill … it won’t choke you … remember the flavor, and try to avoid the queue that forms in front of those dispensing another dose.

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Sigh …

I have been trying so hard to veer away from writing on the propensity for philandering in males … really, I have … but the topic keeps popping up, as such things do. The sneaky buggers happen across my path even when I’m busy looking at another angle of a story, so, being mine and all, my fingers head for the keyboard and the sighs happen in black and white.

While the world has been enthralled with the plight and eventual rescue of those 33 Chilean miners, I followed the story along with everyone else. Horrified by the idea of being trapped beneath tons and tons of Planet Earth for weeks and weeks and weeks, who didn’t imagine the terror? And when they began emerging from that living grave, who didn’t at least mentally applaud the efforts of the rescuers and the fortitude of those who’d lived those weeks?

Well … turns out there may have been quite a few who’d have voted to bloody well leave them down there.

From The Telegraph, this headline, “Mistresses and wives clash over trapped Chilean miners” could lead one to believe some of those guys might be needing another bolt hole, and needing it soon.

At least five wives have been forced to come face to face with mistresses whose existence was kept from them by their husbands, who have been trapped more than 2,300ft below since a cave in on August 5.

One miner has four women fighting over him in an effort to claim compensation offered to the families of those facing between three to four months underground until a rescue shaft can reach them.

FFS!

One miner, who has not been named, has a first wife he never divorced, his live-in partner, a mother of a child he had several years ago, and a woman who claims to be his current girlfriend all visiting the camp.

Seems it’s the case that the only time wives may have been sure their husbands weren’t dipping their wick in another woman’s well was between the 5th of August and yesterday. (Not going in any direction toward what may have been going on between consenting guys down there in the darkness …)

I do get that Latino men have that macho thing going that needs some putting around to prove manliness or attractiveness or dickness or whatever and that dudes who make a living digging around in the bowels of the earth may not be too picky about dropping into any old hole, but five out of thirty-three THAT WE KNOW ABOUT ALREADY?

Come to think about it, given the results of the informal poll I conducted a while back, that number seems impossibly low, and most likely is:

“Some of the men have children from numerous women and all of them have arrived here to stake their claim. I’ve met five families in this situation but I’m sure there are more.

… “Those that truly love their men have slipped away quietly not wanting to cause any more pain to the families but others are putting up a fight.”

The hilarious aspect of the story … to me … is the way the concern over the stability of the trapped miners has played out.

The team of psychologists charged with ensuring the mental welfare of the men below ground are attempting keep such developments from the miners.

“We read all the letters before they are sent down to make sure the miners do not experience any extra anxiety,” said Alberto Iturra, head of the psychological team.

You think these guys are so stupid that they didn’t have a clue that up top their wives were meeting their girlfriends and a whole lotta talkin’ was goin’ on? I’m guessing, probably. Surprise, surprise, boys … your cover, like your dick, has been blown! “Extra anxiety” … ya think? Let’s just call it … hm … what? … consequence? Paybacks be a mo fo? You might as well leave your balls in the hole, Dudes, cuz they’re toast now?

Of course, there will be open arms waiting since forgiveness is a virtue and these guys have suffered, although not for their sins.

One of the trapped miners, Yonni Barrios Rojas, who is using his first aid training to treat medical problems underground is among those who faces difficult questions when he finally makes it the surface.

His wife, Marta Salinas, 56, discovered he had a mistress when she came across another woman holding a vigil for him. The other woman, Susana Valenzuela, said they met on a training course five years ago and he was planning to leave his wife for her.

“He is my husband. He loves me and I am his devoted wife,” insisted Mrs Salinas. “This other woman has no legitimacy.”

I’m hoping Señora Salinas takes her compensation check and spends it on a holiday with a 28-year-old toy boy who will make her feel ways … and things … she hasn’t felt in many years and that Susana wins the prize that is Yonni for the month it takes for the next popped tart to show up.

Are there lessons to be learned from this? Sure. Will anyone learn them? Nah. Will women who have no other option welcome their man home, cook him up a big pot of caldillo de congrio,tuck him into bed and join him gratefully. You bet.

Sigh …

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Cheating … at golf?

A bit behind the pop culture curve as always, I’m just catching up with the flap over Tiger Woods and his wandering putter and can’t help but wonder about the reactions his now-admitted infidelity is getting.

It seems people are surprised … and disappointed.

Why?

Because he’s such a “nice guy” in his public personal? Do the People Mag photos of cuddling a new baby in tender fatherhood sum up the man? Does the fact that his wife presents the best of model-like beauty convince the world that he’s bound to be bound?

Gimme a break.

Tiger is a man.

It doesn’t matter one bit if he’s a famous, rich, handsome, charming man … in fact that makes philandering even more likely than for the obscure, poor, ugly and socially clumsy.

It doesn’t matter one bit that he’s happily married with children.

It doesn’t matter one bit that screwing around could cost his reputation, his marriage, his career.

It doesn’t matter one bit that sinking one in other women’s grassy greens could rip the heart out of the woman who dedicated herself to him, threaten the stability of his children and ruin lives.

Nope.

The only thing that matters is an easy hole at the end of a short fairway and a chance to make the shot without drawing a crowd. The hole doesn’t need to be special in any way, nor even well groomed … a hole is a hole is a hole.

Because there are so many public courses offering free play at the drop of a smile, opportunities to take off-the-books strokes are aplenty, and few players resist the pull of a new lay, especially those that offer no real challenge.

Tiger can cry now, beg for forgiveness, plead for privacy, experience deep and profound remorse … because he got caught.

Men are dogs, whether they carry a seven iron, a fishing line, a football, a guitar or the Presidential Seal.

It’s time to revisit this post, perhaps …

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I must be beginning to heal … or, at least for today I’ve managed to work up a good head of indignation at the betrayal that has brought the end of my marriage.

One reason for breaking our family, out of the very few that my husband has managed to share with me, is that I was working too hard and not paying enough attention to him. 

Now, even though I could have some empathy for that as a reason to begin to distance oneself from a spouse, I can’t fathom that process happening without some discussion, but there was nary a word from Mark other than the occasional complaint that my dinner was getting cold as I was trying to post or that I wasn’t paid nearly enough for the number of hours I dedicated to my work.

If this work I poured so much of my soul into was without soul, if, perhaps, I was consumed by fluctuating money markets or with attending constantly to a process designed to grow more and more money for myself in an endless game of greed, I might also have some compassion for a mate who felt ignored by aggressive avarice.

The fact is, however, that through the adoption of our children I became a passionate advocate for international adoption. The millions of children without  families in the world are for the most part a voiceless lot, and given that there are no few people in the world very vocal about seeing to keeping these kids sentenced to a short life of misery under a banner misleading reading “Cultural Genocide” or something equally shortsighted or self indulgent, lending my efforts to remind that there are other sides to that coin with miraculous results seemed an effort worth pursuing and pursuing vigorously.

I personally know of a dozen kids who have wonderful families now whose shift from hopeless forever to chances and opportunities and love can be directly traced to my work.

I’m not trying to pull any “Saint” shirt on over my head with this, but it sure does piss me off that my husband, father to our two Cambodian-born children, has taken my work, my passion for the world’s orphans, my dedication, and turned it into an excuse for leaving our family for the Blow Job Queen of Trashland … fat face, big tits and all.

I think this just might mean I’m getting better.

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