Today, my bff and I went to Starbucks for “girl time”. I love doing this even more now than I ever did, because while we were roommates, girl time was whenever I wanted it to be, and I miss that dearly. We now schedule our time, and try to make the most of her break from work. We drink awesome coffee, window shop for expensive things we can’t afford and don’t need, and talk about anything and everything.
Today, after discussing kids and men, our conversation turned to affairs. Certainly, that is understandable, since it seems lately every time I turn on the news someone else has had a scandalous affair. Really though, we were talking more about every day people, not people in the public eye. People, perhaps sitting next to us drinking coffee. People like her. People like me.
I hate to admit it, but I did have an affair. I could spend the next several hours explaining (justifying?) my reasons, but there really is no point to that. What I did was wrong. Period. I know that, and I live with it every day. I can’t change that, I can’t undo an affair. All I can do, is try to figure out what happened, something I am still trying to figure out.
What I do know, is that happy people do not have affairs. That is not to say that my husband was to blame. In the end, the blame and responsibility lies with me. I was very unhappy, living in a marriage with no communication and no trust. I felt like I was unloved and unappreciated. I asked for help, and was told I was helpless. I lived in relative isolation, I had no outlet for my feelings. I cried a lot.
When my affair began, I knew, deep down, that there was a possibility of being caught. At the time I would have said it wasn’t likely, because I really didn’t think my husband paid that much attention to me. Deep down though , I knew that I was taking a chance. I guess he was paying closer attention than I thought, because I did get caught. I will not say that he handled it the best way, because he did things that there is really no excuse for. Again, I knew my husband. I knew he would blow up and do inexcusable things. So, wrong or not, ultimately, I have to take responsibility for that, too. Believe me, I have, and I do.
I have often said that my affair was a symptom of my marriage breakdown, not the cause. I still truly believe that. I was so starved for love, for affection, that as soon as I was shown a little,even by a stranger, I jumped at it with both feet. However, many times a person dies because of the symptoms of a disease, rather than the disease itself. So, if my marriage does die, I have to take my responsibility for that as well. There are other ways I could have handled my situation, I am sure. My regrets are too vast and great to mention. I believe very strongly in living not in the past, but using the lessons we learn to move foward, and that’s what I do, every day. Honestly, that’s all I can do, accept responsibility, and move forward.