I’m writing out my life in a timeline, so to experience my story the way its supposed to be told, start at I Was That Girl In School… then proceed chronologically by post date.
From the outside looking in, I can see how this situation can look pretty bad: a married man and a woman in a committed relationship struck up a friendship, started texting, they ‘got caught cheating,’ the boyfriend broke up with the girlfriend, the married man left his wife to be with the girl resulting in confusion and heart break. It’s rather easy to believe this story when it’s being shoved down your throat (thanks to a certain someone…) I promise you, that’s not what happened.
Friendship between two people of the opposite sex in committed relationships has become taboo (or has it been this way forever?). Why is it assumed that a man and a woman are not able to have a platonic friendship while still being faithful to his/her spouse? Especially in an age of technology where the capability for communication is limitless, couples need to have open communication on their views of this practice in order to spare one’s feeling later on.
Where is the line drawn? Is friendly banter at a work function cheating? Is texting one another cheating? Is commenting on social media posts cheating? What about when two adults start meeting up to play tennis once a week with other adults (a bit situational, but you get the idea)? It’s subjective, which is what causes the most pain when one believes certain acts are cheating and the other does not.
This was never a topic of conversation with me and Boyfriend. There was even a time I let on that I was texting an ex of mine (remember Mr. Not-My-Type?) about his upcoming [21st] birthday celebration that I had been invited to attend. So why were there no red flags when I was texting an ex, but when Boyfriend found out I was texting a guy from work, the two situations seemed as relatable as a duck to mashed potatoes? Bad metaphor? How about orange juice to toothpaste? Get the idea? Moving on…
Was it a sign of his insecurities within the relationship that made him upset to find out about me texting another man? Could be. It also could be the very basic instinct that he reacted with: jealousy. Understandable. I too experienced the feeling of jealousy when I found out Boyfriend was texting a female co-worker years before I had been ‘caught’ texting the Bloke. Can you say double standard? How about hypocrite?
You may recall: I hate when, out in public (dinner, movie, any activity outside the norm of everyday life), my companion is constantly on his/her phone. I am of the mindset: live in the moment. You can’t very well live in the moment when you are glued to your mobile device. This includes taking pictures/videos/snapchats/what-the-hell-ever-you-want-to-justify-your-total-lack-of-quality-living and then proceed to post on social media. Don’t get me wrong; snapping a quick pic for you to recount memories in the future is one thing, but to take said picture, post it online then carry on a conversation with people who, for all I know, could be 1,000 miles away, just for me to sit there twiddling my thumbs is not how I want to spend my free time. When you are with me, I want it to be about me, not Steve who thinks the piece of steak on your plate looks like a prehistoric triceratops getting ready to devour the baked potato that somewhat resembles that guy from school where as my counterpart thinks it more closely resembles a sloth reaching for… the baked potato that somewhat resembles that guy from school?… [a comment war ensues] Call it selfish if you want. At least I’m being real.
Am I getting off topic…? I feel like I’m getting off topic…
Call me naive to put 100% of my trust into my S.O. to believe that he can be friends with those of the opposite sex excluding my presence. What’s a relationship without trust? I have no problem if my significant other has female friends; none whatsoever. I do have a problem when said S.O. takes time that he should be devoting to my happiness to incessantly text said female friend. Straight up: that’s your way of choosing her over me, and I’m not okay with that. I would complain if that friend were male as well— in fact, I did on numerous occasions. My time is my time.
Anyways… the reason I found out that Boyfriend was texting a female previously was because he was doing so on a date. I called him out on it and he tried to turn it around on me saying I was only upset that he was texting ‘some chick [he] work[ed] with’ instead of the fact that he was drowning in his phone while I sat there waiting patiently for the focus to be back on me. I can’t be the only one that despises this annoying habit, right…?
Now back to the Bloke…
Yes. We worked together. Yes. We were friends. Yes. My 8 year relationship came to an abrupt end and I turned to a married man for support. I shouldn’t have done that. I admit it (see, I know right from wrong). But I felt I had no one else to turn to. Boyfriend had already started telling my friends and family (all of whom were 200+ miles away) that I was cheating on him with a married man (thus, turning them against me) and I didn’t have the energy to explain his lies away, especially after everything he had put me through by digging up the past and throwing it in my face.
So, as I left off from my last post; we hit the road. I just needed to escape; to go somewhere that wasn’t my apartment or the Bloke’s house. I decided to take the Bloke to a near by lake where we ended up spending the day laying on the beach and swimming. It was relaxing, peaceful; exactly what we needed. On our way back home (once we hit an area with cell service), my phone blew up. Twenty-something missed calls, two new voicemails, and countless texts all from Boyfriend, a number I didn’t recognize [Mrs. Bloke], and my mom. I figured it was pure coincidence that my mom had called me in the middle of everything, but I was wrong… boy was I wrong.
Boyfriend and Mrs. Bloke (both being 500 miles away, undoubtedly filling each others’ heads with ‘what ifs’) became so panicked at the thought of me and the Bloke not answering our phones that the two of them TOGETHER tattled to MY MOM! They filled her in on what was going on, and told her to talk some sense into me. WTF!?
One of the two voicemails was from my mom: “I guess we need to talk. Call me.” I returned her call to figure out what the hell was going on (she wanted to know the same thing). She told me about the conversation she had with Mrs. Bloke and the lies Boyfriend had been telling everyone. Throughout the break up, I kept a pretty level head with Boyfriend, but after finding out that he was telling people (who had no business in anything that was going on) lies about me leaving him for a married man, ruining a ‘perfectly happy marriage,’ and committing adultery, I was livid. To say I sent a nasty message to Boyfriend would be an understatement.
You would think after everything Boyfriend put me through, I would grow to hate him, and in turn, fight fire with fire, but you know what…? Just like my friend Rosie over at Hookup Culture wrote: Bad Mouthing Your Ex [Hurts] You, Not Him (check out her blog if your looking for some good relationship advice). And I 100% agree.
Fast forward to a month after everyone and my mother getting involved in two simultaneous endings of relationships: Boyfriend became The Ex after an abrupt cut in all communication after he pled to stay friends (way to send mixed signals, bro) and Mrs. Bloke became ex Mrs. Bloke. Though I haven’t heard from The Ex for quite some time, he stays in touch with my parents, making surprise visits and phone calls (don’t get me started on that nonsense). I assume he’s moved on. Ex Mrs. Bloke is now engaged a little over a year after her and the Bloke’s separation, so obviously she took the divorce really hard. And me and the Bloke… well that’s for another post. 😉