Thursday, December 15, 2005

Well, here's a fine pickle

Flashback to May 2004:

A friend of a friend sets me up with a friend. We meet and go out. He's obviously not the age the friend claimed, but I let that slide as the friend's mistake. This guy's problem is that all he seems to want to do is make out. All hands. He sends me an email shortly after that date, telling me how much he misses me and wants to see me again. His email is a Yahoo address, so I look up the name to see if there's a profile.

Oh yeah, there sure is. A few keywords jump off the screen at me:
"Married but Looking"
Member of the "Extramarital Affairs" and "Flashing" groups.
"I like women and sex, not necessarily in that order."

I was understandably upset.

No one told me he was married. What a total louse. Needless to say, I don't have those friends anymore.

Oh, and for what it might be worth to someone, he goes by Ash. Ash W.

(((Return from Flashback Land.)))

Tonight. I'm at my son's basketball game. I'm catching up with a friend whose son is friends with mine, but on the opposite team. My ex shows up and sits by me. It's going to be a long game.

Then, the game gets longer.

My friend is joined by a woman I don't know. She introduces us. Nice lady. She points out her son. I point out mine. The nice lady's husband sits down beside her.


We don't make eye contact. Ever. I'm not sure what I'd have done if we had. Maybe stuck out my tongue. Then again, he might have found that encouraging. I was furious.

When the kids went to bed, I went to see if his profile is still posted. It is, and he's still claiming to be about 13 years younger than he is. As if, dude.

So, what to do? Nothing? An anonymous warning? Like a copy of the profile, addressed to her? It's scary that this guy is running around, bringing home God-knows-what to this poor woman. Or am I sticking my keyboard where it doesn't belong?

Yes, a fine pickle indeed. Dang small world.


Parenthetical Thinker said...

Okay, first off, my hard-core, no holds barred advice. And then, a question based on my current theory over what is and is not cheating.

Make an anonymous yahoo account and send her the profile and spill all of the details. The man is a lech and she needs to know. As Dan Savage would say - his screwing around endangers her life. So, if he was aiming a rifle at her and you could warn her before he shoots - you'd do it, right? Well, this is no different. She doesn't have to be your friend - this is basic human decency. He's being about as fundamentally dishonest as he can be with her.

Here's my theory. This is about me, but I think it applies to a lot of men. Not all men, but a lot.

I want to have sex with as many women as I can.

That's my fundamental, raw, untamed drive. The male sex drive. It's absolutely true.

Now, obviously, it is both impossible and impractical to have sex with scads of women. But, that drive is always there. You just control it one way or another.

So, skip to being in a relationship. When I was married, I had about 12 opportunities to cheat with different women that I passed on. That's over a span of about 10 years. Now, of those 12 women, I know that I kissed 7 of them.

Seven women kissed = cheating

That was my wife's view. And, I will admit, kissing a woman is generally what happens before you end up shagging her. So, the whole "slippery slope" argument has some merit.

My view is this, though. Yes, I admit to kissing the 7. But, that's 5 I didn't kiss. Plus, I refrained from fucking ANY of them. That's 12 opportunities to really cheat - we all agree fuckign is cheating - that I turned down. Where, I ask, is the love for that? Where's the acknowledgment that, hey - you gave up something for me by doing that? No, all I get is "you cheated on me by kissing those other girls/women".

I argue that there are degrees of "cheating" (kissing is not equal in severity as fucking, which is not as bad as a long-term affair that involves real emotions). She argued that it's a line - doesn't matter what you do to cross it (flirt, kiss, feal, fuck, etc.) - once crossed, it's never uncrossed.

My question is - what do you think about that?

Blogget Jones said...

I think you're right about the cheating guy. I don't know her email addy, though, so I'm thinking of sending it to her in snail mail. She's a stay-at-home mom. She gets the mail first.

Your analogy with the rifle is right on target (pardon the pun). He has no right to gamble with her life.

You've been good about giving me the man's perspective in my situation, so I'll attempt to shed some light on the woman's perspective on your theory.

Yes, there are degrees of cheating. I can certainly agree with that. What the theory doesn't take into account is it all hurts the same way, and threatens the basic trust that a relationship needs.

For a woman, it's not about the specific action. It's about the hurt.

That "line" your wife mentioned is the key. To her, there are definite boundaries drawn around the intimacy a husband and wife share. That's her territory. She holds exclusive rights to the physical and emotional intimacy between herself and her husband. For him to break those boundaries and be at all intimate with another women is to take what is hers and give it away.

To her, it's a violation of what she holds dear, and a cheapening of what she considered precious.

To be totally blunt, she's not going to throw a ticker-tape parade for all the times you didn't kiss someone else. Resisting the kiss isn't above-and-beyond the call of duty. It's what's expected when you've sworn to "foresake all others."

I'm guessing, but I'd think that was her perspective.

For me, personally, it is a devastating thought to imagine my guy sharing a a physical intimacy of any sort with another woman. Why is that a big deal? Because in that moment, he's forgotten me and what we mean to each other. To kiss her, he has to foresake me, when she should be the one turned away.

And there's the slippery slope thing, too. Once that trust is violated, you don't know where it'll end. When will the kiss not be enough? The doubt and the worry starts with that one kiss. It hurts bad and deep and, sometimes, irreparably.