Home » blog » CHEATER-noun- a person or thing that cheats

CHEATER-noun- a person or thing that cheats

One of my favorite shows, ‘The Affair,’ is about to begin a new season, and I can’t wait. One of my friends remarked she couldn’t understand my wanting to watch a show about a cheater. In her mind, cheating is the ultimate no-no, the worst thing possible to happen to any relationship, a line never to be crossed and something that can never, ever, under any circumstance, be justified.

So I played investigative reporter, and asked some friends of mine, “What would you do if you found out your husband cheated on you?” The overwhelming response was, “leave him,” which I found extreme. I mean I think not paying the mortgage or lying about paying your taxes is worse, that shit can mean the loss of your home, but I can be a bit of a pragmatist when push comes to shove. Then there were those who said they’d get counseling, work on what had to be a bad relationship, and I wondered, if that were always the case, does a cheating spouse mean a relationship is bad, or simply lacking?  But still, the overwhelming consensus was that cheating is never okay.

Never. Never, ever? That’s just so black or white, and it got me to thinking…is there any time cheating is justifiable? Is it something that sometimes, maybe less often than not, but sometimes, something necessary, perhaps justifiable, maybe even good?  And I came up with a tentative, qualified, “yes,” certainly an unpopular answer, and I might not have very many supporters, but I can explain…

So, let’s say when a couple gets married, both people are fit and of average weight, both people work-out, lead a healthy lifestyle -it’s something important to them both. Let’s imagine over the years, the wife gains an ungodly amount of weight, I mean a ton, and not because of any health issue, or hormonal imbalance, but simply because she couldn’t keep her damn mouth shut. Let’s also imagine the husband has stayed fit, watched his weight, okay so maybe he’s gained five or ten pounds over the years; he is getting older, but he’s kept the contract, he’s stayed sexually attractive to his partner, and his partner has, well, turned into a complete turn-off. So is the husband supposed to just forget about sex? Is he destined to live his life without any kind of sexual partner?  I’m saying the wife is huge, there is nothing he finds sexually attractive looking at her, it’s her own doing, her own fault and she’s unwilling to do anything about it… So, is it still so black or white? I mean, I can kind of see where an affair, or at least an occasional extramarital fling, might be in order?  (This whole scenario could be reversed, the husband turning into a cow, and I’d say the same thing.)

I can hear it now, people in a marriage are supposed to love and honor their partners no matter what, for better or for worse, and blah, blah, blah, but is that being fair?

Okay, so what if one partner just decides they are finished with sex, just done, for whatever reason- and again, not for medical reasons, just because they don’t feel like having sex anymore, and too damn bad if their partner still very much wants sex, still very much wants them, they’re done, they close that door, lock it up and say “too bad.” Is it still so black or white?

Health is one thing. If a partner can’t have sex for health reasons, well that’s part of the, “for better or worse” part of what you signed up for, but I’m assuming there could still be affection, physical contact, something to relay and assure love and caring, and getting older isn’t an excuse to stop having sex – people age, and saying your partner is no longer attractive to you simply because they’ve aged, well that doesn’t work for me… But, if someone completely lets themselves go, stops caring about their physical well-being and appearance, makes no attempt to look even half way decent, is that fair in a relationship?

Or what if a partner doesn’t tell their partner about say, a fetish, one their partner really can’t abide, can’t enjoy, hates, and it’s really all their partner wants and can find satisfaction from, no amount of counseling or reasoning is going to change what gets him or her off, and the partner is left with nothing for themselves…still so cut and dry?

So now you’re saying, “Get a divorce.” But divorces don’t involve just two people. Divorce tears apart so much more than just a marriage. It tears apart a life, a home and family, friends, and even pets have to be divided. Perhaps the cheater doesn’t want a divorce, doesn’t want to lose all he or she has, but wants the one thing, the one important thing they can’t get from their partner -sex. Or whatever it is they absolutely can’t get from their partner, no matter how hard they try, no matter the counseling, the attempts made, or the effort exerted. Maybe cheating isn’t always about sex, maybe it’s sometimes about something more, something missing from a relationship that can’t be found, no matter what, no matter how hard they try. Maybe there is still a great deal of love for the obese wife, or the spouse who decides sex is over, or for a spouse who desires things the other can’t ever possibly enjoy, maybe in all the scenarios offered there is still love and want for a marriage, but a need for something more.

Then there is the possibility of that one person, that unicorn of a human being, someone simply finds magical and can’t resist…

I guess I can understand the person being cheated on wanting out, wanting that divorce. After all, they’ve been cheated on. But I wonder if there’s ever any thought to the “why” to the reason for the cheating…. I get that some people are just lying, cheating low-life, selfish individuals with no thought to the person they are cheating on, but always? Certainly, not always…

So is cheating sometimes okay? I’ll just say the answer’s not always black or white, but sometimes, a whole lotta gray…

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