You are not special. You’re not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You’re the same decaying organic matter as everything else. We’re all part of the same compost heap. We’re all singing, all dancing crap of the world.
The tide was rolling away, it was a picturesque vista, the sun high in the sky shimmering off the calm blue ocean waves, the smell of salt hung in the air, and fresh spray carried by the wind.
“You’ve just told me that you want to sleep with other women, that you wish you weren’t married, that you could go back in time and do it all over again, what do you expect me to think?” My wife said looking blankly into space; it wasn’t really a question.
It was the second time I’d told her. I realized I was much more stony and cold this time than the previous time. That time I’d sat and told her weakly while we were having dinner, we’d been arguing, I finally felt I needed to communicate this temptation that had been festering in my soul, share it with my wife, after all, she was supposed to be my friend, my fellow Christian sister. Shouldn’t I tell her that I was being consumed from the inside out by desires, longings that had been long been left unattended in our marriage? I knew then I couldn’t expect compassion or understanding from her, but I was out of options. She was angry of course, she wondered how I could feel such a way, told me as she had before when she’s brought up divorce that I’d never see my son because she wouldn’t share him, she didn’t care what the courts would say. I’m sure it was just the momentary passion of the situation. Normally, you couldn’t blame a spouse for feeling this way when their significant other tells them they wish they’d never gotten together, but my wife had been telling me how much she hated me and wished she’d never married me for a good long while at this point. Rather than inquire further about my feelings, I knew where it would go, straight to suspicion.
“Who do you have in mind? Have you been talking to them? Who’s caught your eye? Jesselyn? Or someone at work? Those girls in HR?”
“No one, it is just a feeling, I don’t know what to do about it. But, I’m not talking to anyone or looking at anyone.” I didn’t know what to say, so I lied, the first of many, to spare her feelings, I knew if I told her I’d even talked to anyone about having an affair it would be hurtful, and unnecessary.
Her suspicion was nothing new, it had been that way for years, long before I’d even considered cheating a remote possibility. I’d been talking to a few girls online, but I didn’t honestly believe it would go anywhere. I wondered if even if I tried my hardest if I’d ever have an affair. I tried to talk to her about why I thought I felt this way as we sat there overlooking the ocean, about the lack of love and affection, she had made it clear in times past that she simply didn’t love me anymore. It was no good, she just dismissed it.
“Fine, go off and fuck other women, that’s what you really want, but I’m not sharing our son when I find out.”
I only told my wife those two times about the infection that had taken root in my mind, 4 months apart. From there Jason continued his slow death as the desire consumed his heart turning it black, everything he’d built himself up to be all those years was covertly ripped apart, vivisecting his own psyche, throwing away all inhibitions, incompatible values, and conscience, and Naive Adulterer, a doppelganger, was assembled from the shadowy shreds of Jason’s consciousness. He looks the same, talks the same, walks the same, but with an edge of new confidence and all his old fears excised. He sleeps on Jason’s side of the bed. He sits at Jason’s place at dinner. He plays with Jason’s son. He kisses Jason’s wife goodbye every morning as he heads off to work at Jason’s office.
It took months before my wife could speak a kind word to me again after I told her my fear of what I was becoming, by then it was too late, the monster had already taken over: I’d had my first affair and committed to having another one. This isn’t to say I was a victim, that I wasn’t the culpable one, I know that I could have stopped it, if I’d wanted to, but I gave in, said I’d give it a try. She didn’t understand, and it appears she never will. She couldn’t accept that I might betray her if things didn’t change, the mere suggestion was the worst betrayal imaginable and had to be banished as merely malicious words intended to hurt her or manipulate her into acting a certain way. Nothing could be further from the truth, they had been the last acts of desperation by a man losing a battle within himself.
I’m not trying to excuse myself, I know I can’t, it is just another facet, another inaccurate description of what it takes to fundamentally re-engineer one’s mind. I got called a ‘piece of shit’ again today by a girl. I never seem to get used to that for how often it happens. She’s probably right. It is hard to kick against the goads, to swim upstream when everyone else just says to get back in line. Maybe they are right.