Did anyone see “Confessions of a Suburban Cheating Mom” on HuffPo this week? It’s wasn’t the bodice ripper you’d imagine.
What I imagine a cheating suburban mom sounds like:
I put down the juice box, told Carly to watch an Elmo video, and furtively texted my lover. “What are you wearing, Handsome?” Me, I was wearing Hanna Anderson striped pullover, with a faint vomit stain. He didn’t reply. Probably because his controlling, sexually withholding wife had found our secret cell phone again. Bitch. I imagined our next rendezvous. Blow job in the Walmart parking lot. Or maybe, if he was feeling generous, a night at the Motel 8. Elmo droned on in the background. The sippy cup lifestyle wasn’t doing it for me. Some people get pedicures, I was having an affair, just a little “me time.”
Nah, it wasn’t anything like that. Really dull article actually. No salacious particulars.
Instead, it was that brand of cheater narrative — the non-apology apology. Yes, cheating sucks… for OTHER people. But I’m not that Bad Sort of Cheater, I’m exceptional. I had a really good reason for cheating. Which makes me the Better Sort of Cheater.
I don’t condone cheating. It is toxic to a marriage and a family, immoral and myopic.
And then goes on to justify exactly why she did it.
Her sad childhood (a father who cheated). She “wasn’t happy.” Two small kids. A “rote sex life.”
I’m sure none of you chumps can relate to that. You must live in a bubble of perfect contentment and sexual satisfaction. Your small children are never exhausting. Life never disappoints you. But for her, of course, it was different.
She was lonely, was ignoring her own needs. He was lackluster about his commitment to therapy… so the only natural consequence, of course, was an affair.
And because the writer is so VERY different, she never resorts to cliches like “it wasn’t planned” or “I wasn’t looking for it.”
When I cheated on my husband, it wasn’t something I planned. I know that’s what they all say but it’s true. I certainly wasn’t looking for it. A friendship with another man grew into something that was not tawdry sex, but a renewed sense of happiness and hope. It evolved over time and wasn’t based in lust, but conversation, appreciation and understanding. Things I hadn’t really ever had from my husband. As I told my best friend to help explain it, sometimes you don’t realize you’re in an abyss until you begin to see daylight.
Oh shit. She says exactly that. Well, hey, affairs are “toxic” BUT they give a “renewed sense of happiness and hope.” Not only that, they’re the way out of an abyss!
I’m sure her affair partner also felt their hook-ups were about good conversation and not tawdry sex. All those married dating sites, those people are advertising their verbal abilities and empathy.
Sure, for some pervy MEN it’s about the sex, but not her. Remember, she’s in the Better Class of Cheater and it was all about authentic connection and appreciation.
Read: Her husband sucked and drove her to it. Had she been Sufficiently Appreciated, it would not have come to this.
She “doesn’t condone cheating” — it’s just the way of the abyss toward happy sunlight. Nope. Don’t take climbing out of dark pits as an endorsement.
She isn’t responsible at ALL! It was “inevitable” and “the only way it could’ve happened.”
Poor cheaters who have no agency. She “wasn’t aware of herself.” If she was, hey, she would’ve gotten divorced first.
Did I miss the apology to her ex-husband in there somewhere?