I'm the commenter who wrote, "No, Dan. It is never okay to cheat on your spouse. If you feel like you need to go outside the marriage, you TELL the person and let them choose if they want to leave or stay, given that information. It is never okay to help someone cheat on their partner. Come on, Dan."
So, I'm commenting regarding your comment on my comment. Also known as, having a conversation. (In public. In front of scads of readers.)
So, you wrote that this was "more complicated";
"Once I realized I was failing at fidelity, should I have told [my wife]? Tell her one night (in the midst of her working 100 hour weeks, with two small kids), “Honey, I can’t do monogamy anymore. I am going to go get another girlfriend. Until further notice, whenever you don’t know where I am, you should assume I am having sex with her. Or if you want we can make a schedule together so you will know for sure when this is happening.”
That's a lovely straw man you've concocted to make yourself feel better. First of all, you didn't "fail." You chose to engage in an activity that, using your own damned words, would be extremely painful to your wife. You chose to do it, and you decided that your wife didn't get to know that her partner was stabbing her in the back.
Did you need to tell her all that silly verbiage you added to make your case? No. All you needed to tell her was that you couldn't be monogamous any more. And you'd tell her the same way you'd tell her something else devastating that she'd need to react to. If you suddenly lost your job or got a cancer diagnosis, would you spring that on her "one night, in the midst of her working 100-hour weeks"? I'd really f***ing hope not. So you should have treated, "I can't keep our marriage agreement any more," with the same consideration as any other major news she'd need to react to. (Oh, not major news? Okay, then no problem springing it on her before bed. Right?)
You also write, "And to tell her ahead of time I was going to do this to her would add a layer of cruelty and humiliation. The only thing on the plus side would seem to be that I could feel morally correct."
So you lied to her to spare her feelings?
Welcome to the logic of CPOS everywhere.
Gotta keep piling on:
"I spent so many hours trying to rationalize my behavior to myself. Usually unsuccessfully."
Uh, that's because you were doing something wrong. Too bad you didn't heed your own conscience.
"I ended it, and after a very difficult several months, our marriage recovered, and is going strong today."
In other words, the "very difficult" months were because you'd hurt her terribly. I'm also completely unsympathetic to how strong your marriage is now, in spite of the fact that you screwed her over.
Oh, and another test on whether you're doing the right thing or not? Imagine that you had a daughter, and that said daughter was married to a man who did to her what you did to your wife. Would you be as loosey-goosey about your son-in-law's behavior towards your own daughter?
I don't think so.
All those comments, I can't imagine why conservative voters seem to relish pooping on the left's political ideals.
This auto-hatred of gay republicans is gratifying but defeating. A lot of people voted for trump. I might think their reasons are stupid or immoral, but trivializing the people and their reasons gives trump more ammunition. The fact that some gay people voted trump just means that their other (potentially stupid or immoral) concerns are more important to them than which way their dick/pussy points. Surely that's good, to have de-stigmatized gayness enough that gayness is no longer their primary concern.
I'll share part of what I wrote back to Dan, by way of reply to all those above. All the best, ya'll.
"I want you to know that I am aware of all the travesties you laid out - they are not news to me. I do not deny that some small portion of the moral culpability for them falls to me. It is not a game to me, it isn't funny... I also know intellectually, though I cannot possibly appreciate, that the world has thus far been infinitely kinder to all the gay republican white boys like me than it was to gay men coming of age during the shoah of the 80s.
I could write at length about why it is that a thinking person might have some level of awareness of all this pain and yet still chose the things I have thus-far chosen, but I will spare you that essay (you don't actually want to read it do you?). I just hope you'll allow the possibility that some of your adversaries actually care about human suffering and the world we are building for posterity. "
Ok, but... the main concern I think is the LW’s desire to lie to get sex. This particular omission is a very big deal to the people he wants to lie to. Dan made that point very well. Lying to get anything should not be thought of as acceptable, especially as a means to gain access to someone else’s body... it’s as simple as that.
I have a few relatives, all older middle aged, straight white men, who voted for Trump, and the one closest too me regrets it now. I've forgiven him, he's quintessential low information voter that bought into Trumps cult of personality. But I have no patience for a gay Trump voter. I can smell them coming from a mile off. They smell unfuckable.
Whoops, didn't mean to post that - Yes, you've hit the nail on the head. People can hold political views that I find abhorrent. That's their prerogative. However, if it comes with reduced sex as a consequence, well, everything in life has consequences. Lying to get out of the unpleasant consequences isn't okay, and lying to sleep with people isn't okay.
@4: There is nothing self hating about gay republicans. As one myself, I'm only sad that a former NYC big lib dem blowhard stole and pissed all over the party beyond recognition.
But sadder still are myopic gay democrats caught in the failed ideology.
Your Shoah, Hebrew for Holocaust, reference is ignorant and appalling as the rest of your argument.
The hardship of the 80’s isn’t over. You’re hiding the fact that you support a regime that is actively taking steps to cut medical care and reinstate some of the hatred and discrimination, only to be able to fuck those vilified who wouldn’t want to be near you if they only knew who you truly are.
If we go back to your Holocaust analogy then be aware that to some you may come across as a nazi sympathizer who wouldn’t disclose it so that he can hang around with otherwise wonderful, sexy Jewish friends.
His wife worked hundred hour weeks, has little kids and this guy thinks not telling her before his affair would have you know maybe upset her a bit. You reckon, LW?
@5, what world is this sweetie, you are building for prosperity? One for whites only.
Piss off with your bull, go watch your Fox News.
Mr Drop - If I interpret correctly, Ms Oid meant the automatic-seeming, apparently reflexive hatred of gay Republicans from those opposed to them, not self-hatred within gay Republicans themselves.
Ms Oid - Agreed that different priorities is a sign of progress, but I'll venture so far as to say that some of the gay Trump support was presented by those voters, correctly or otherwise, as the better way to vote for those thinking mainly of their orientation. Two years ago, mainstream feminists were writing articles about "the LBT community" not because they agreed with me that the Alphabet Soup's continued sharing of one can mainly suited the straightriarchy but because they'd decided that the ability to marry was enough to tip the G into the Privileged column instead of the Oppressed column. "I'm With Her", whatever its merits or defects, at the least can be acknowledged not to have instinctive appeal for the Kinsey Six male. (Not that "Make America Great Again", which seemed nostalgic for the days of open approval of blatantly anti-gay attitudes, was really any better, but it was less obvious.) And those gays not familiar with the executive class were susceptible to reading too much sincerity into Mr T's apparently pro-gay business history.
I have a potentially interesting theory that Mr T's pro-SS proclamation at the R convention drew such rapturous applause not because the audience agreed with the sentiment expressed or were faking such agreement, but because so many in the audience were genuinely pleased to have the party standard-bearer make such an expression, in the hopes that it would come to nothing, so that the R party would have an excellent reason to write us off for good. Had Mr T not gotten more of the gay vote than Mr Romney had done before him (there was a tolerable excuse not to consider the lesbian vote equally seriously), things would likely be much worse for us now.
Mr Switch - Actually, I do want to see the work. Failure to show it was part of what put Mrs C on my Never list. Mr T made the same list for other reasons; I did not have a happy time of it during election season.
I am quite prepared to accept that, by your own lights, you care about human suffering and the world you are building for posterity. The question is rather more whether the suffering humans accept your proffered assistance as genuinely helpful. Without seeing the work, I might be inclined to rank the sentiment right up there with Christians Want Gays to Go to Heaven and show their love by offering reduced rates on conversion therapy, or other sentiments I could name but refrain from doing so because they would not suit the tastes of the assembled company.
re the title: I'm pretty sure that the dumbass gay Trump voter is already unloved.
Gatoverde @1/@2: Yes, I had a lot of trouble finding any sympathy for a man whose reaction to his wife working 100-hour weeks with two small children was to embark on a year-long affair. Just because he "struggled" doesn't mean he gets a cookie and reassured that he "tried" to be faithful, so it's okay. Dude was not showing kindness to his wife by not telling her, he was being selfish and cowardly. He choose the most hurtful language and timing possible to illustrate why honesty wouldn't have been the best policy. Come on, dude. "I know the reason we haven't been having much sex is because you're so busy, but I'm struggling to not cheat." Would THAT have been impossible to say?
Switch @5: Yeah, you care about human suffering -- you care about causing more of it. Come on, tell us what you've done to counter the harm you've caused by voting for Trump. Occasionally feeling a modicum of white guilt? Buying a ticket for your friend's kid's school fund-raiser? Gimme a fucking break. The world you're building for posterity is a world where women, trans people, poor people, and immigrants have no rights and no respect. Oh but wait, you personally are not on that list, so it's okay. Your self-important rhetoric says more about your unfuckability than your voting record, frankly.
Whoops, apologies for the duplicate post. I refreshed several times and it wasn't there...
@beccoid: no. People didn't vote for Trump because they were unjustly oppressed. That's bullshit. People voted for Trump because they got upset about losing the right to unjustly oppress others. White people got pissed off that they weren't automatically considered better than POC; Christians were pissed off that they weren't considered the de facto moral regulators of the nation; men were pissed off that they weren't presumed to be better than women on principle. For people like that, more coddling is pointless. They don't need a hug and a "I know, I know, it sucks that you aren't considered better than everyone else just because, but would a blowjob make you feel better?" They need a bitchslap of "you're being a shithead, and if you continue to be a shithead, no one will like you." History backs it up - bending over backwards to appease the prejudiced majority never works.
@1: That was me. Yes, it was my choice. Yes it was a selfish and cowardly one. Yes, I lied to spare her feelings. No of course I would not have used those particular words. Yes I am still trying to make myself feel better about what I did. But I still think that telling her at that particular time “I can’t do monogamy anymore” would have been worse than not telling her.
SWIUTCH@5 ~ "...your adversaries actually care about human suffering and the world we are building for posterity..."
So to REDUCE human suffering and build this BETTER world, you, by proxy, are going to:
1) Eliminate or defund any social program that aims to help those who are struggling the most
2) Eliminate or defund the EPA and let corporations pollute the planet at will
3) Eliminate or defund any program such as Planned Parenthood aimed at providing realistic health services for low-income women
4) Eliminate protections for immigrants and their DREAMER children who have lived their entire lives in the United States as productive citizens, many doing the jobs that no one else will do
5) Staff the entire racist government with Whites Only. Don't believe me? Take a look at this photo of tRumps' interns
6) Lie about EVERYTHING EVERY DAY.
I could keep going ad nauseum, but I think everyone but you and the KKK gets the picture.
@1 and @18: I wouldn’t have used those words, but those were the practical consequences. If I told her, then she was going to be hurt anew every time I was with someone else. (Or if I didn’t tell her specifics, she would be freshly hurt and anxious every time I was gone.) Instead she was hurt once.
@1 and @18: The thing I regret most is that once I cheated the first time, I felt like I was fallen and I gave myself permission to “get it all out of my system”. It would have better not to cheat, but once I did it would have been better to try to do it in a way that was minimally harmful. Maybe I could have gotten by with seeing a professional a handful of times. Maybe if I had started by following your advice, and communicating better, I would have done that instead of having an affair. But it also may have have helped if I had a less simplistic moral viewpoint.
Have you ever done something you knew you shouldn’t have? Of course I was making a choice, a very deliberate one. However, it felt like there were warring factions in my head, and that the selfish side won. I think there might have been a better outcome if both factions had been more open to negotiation.
As if teachers, especially those in Texas, need a reminder:
Texas Teacher Showed a Photo of Her Wife, and Was Barred From the Classroom
@2 why do you think I want sympathy for my strong marriage? I don’t want sympathy for it or congratulations or anything else. Just telling you the eventual outcome.
Yes, as you say, I hurt her terribly. My conduct was indefensible and I don’t try to defend it. But the conduct you suggest— “I am going to start cheating now but it’s not cheating because I am telling you”— would also be indefensible.
And I don’t need to think about my daughters to have empathy for my wife. For fucks sake.
What would I do if I had zero empathy? Tell her. No risk of her leaving (I knew she was serious about not leaving), no sneaking around, no oppressive guilt.
But yeah, my supposed empathy led to me making the selfish choice and hurting her anyway. That’s all true. Hard to win any argument given my behavior. Still. Life is too complicated for “just tell her” to be the end of the story.
Geez Joe @26, don't know, maybe you could have confronted your bull story to yourself about not handling monogamy, rolled your sleeves up and done your work with your kids. You know, the ones you help make.
You ok with monogamy now then? So it was just a ' shit the house is full of those little people, that's not much fun , I'll just pop out and have an affair, the little wife can deal, moment..'.
Share the work load boys, not your cock.
@27 I said I had two small kids and a wife working 100 hour weeks. Why would you assume she was the primary caregiver? And I was not neglecting my kids to pursue the affair, I was neglecting my (40 hr/eeek) job.
You are right, I should not have done what I did. I am arguing against “just tell her” people, not “just don’t do it” people.
Maybe if a person tells their partner of these feelings Joe, then talking about it might shift the impulse to go have an affair.
The issue with cheating, and you are lucky to have such a forgiving wife, is the killing of trust between people.
And while I agree with you I am a CPOS... I spent many months fighting these urges before I cheated. Lots of therapy, prayer.. tried hobbies, exercise... it was just all I could think about all day long. So while I agree with “just don’t do it”, and I agree I totally fucked up, I hope the people who confidently judge me and others in this situation know what it means to overcome a serious temptation.
@29 yes that’s fair.
And yes I am very lucky.
So you spent many months fighting those urges?
Everybody knows that what you should have done is TOLD YOUR WIFE about them. Then she could have chosen if she wanted to stay or go. You wanted to keep your marriage and step out on your wife. That's what you are arguing for when you put yourself in the "don't tell" camp.
"But the conduct you suggest— “I am going to start cheating now but it’s not cheating because I am telling you”— would also be indefensible."
No, that would not have been ethical. Here's what I am making very clear is what you should have done,* and what others in your position should do:
1) Tell your partner, "I can't keep our agreement any more."
Then they can choose if they can accept that or not.
*Of course I've done shit I regretted. Including painful, selfish things that hurt others deeply. Understanding why I did them is not the same as saying that they were the best options (they, uh, weren't.)
@5: Thinking it's okay to lie to people to fuck them (I think everyone lying on dating apps, first dates, etc. is also a giant douche) fits perfectly with the lack of concern for others and entitlement that might lead one to think voting for Trump is at all acceptible.
"I could write at length about why it is that a thinking person might have some level of awareness of all this pain and yet still chose the things I have thus-far chosen"
You don't need to write at length; "I'm too entitled and self-centered to be at all concerned about the harm my actions perpetuate," isn't a very long sentence. Awareness of the harm isn't the same thing as concern about it or wishing to avoid it - don't think we missed that.
@20: That bitchslap won't change their minds - or votes. I am legitimately curious what people think we should do with the actual deplorables, who cannot be convinced to change their minds with appeals to empathy for people who are roo dissimilar (they possibly can be changed with social coercion, which might work really well because they tend toward authoritarian follower personality traits, but that requires some degree of concilliation to make an alternative socialization at all appealing). Imprison them? Disenfranchise them? Kill them? Split them off in their own ethno-nationalist country (the USA previously fought a bloody war to avoid that option, but maybe perspectives have changed)? I see way too much magical thinking in the broadly-defined Left, where the solution is for millions of people to suddenly be much better people. But they're not better, and won't be better without some kind of reason, so that's not a real plan.
@24 Oh, FFS.
"If I told her, then she was going to be hurt anew every time I was with someone else. (Or if I didn’t tell her specifics, she would be freshly hurt and anxious every time I was gone.) Instead she was hurt once."
Really, that's your justification? That you hurt her "just once" instead of over and over again? You honestly think it hurt your wife less to find out that you'd been repeatedly betraying her for a year, after the fact, than to be told up-front that you were considering it? You claim that being honest would've added a "layer of cruelty and humiliation," which one would hope might have prevented you from going through with it- after all, you did end things once she finally caught you. And I'm actually not convinced you could've gone through with it if she'd known, because there's a big difference between sneaking around and convincing yourself that you're sparing your wife's feelings by not telling her, and doing it with the full knowledge of how much it's hurting her. But even if that wouldn't have stopped you (which would not speak well of you, for the record), telling her still would've been the right thing to do because it would've given her the fully-informed choice whether to have sex with you while you're actively having sex with someone else. Not to speak for all wives, but I think most of us would prefer to decide for ourselves whether to expose ourselves to our husband's girlfriend's STDs.
"Yes I am still trying to make myself feel better about what I did."
You can forgive yourself for doing it without justifying it. You did a shitty thing (for a year), you're sorry for doing it, you stopped and will never do it again (let's hope), and presumably you appreciate how incredibly lucky you are that you didn't, say, get your girlfriend pregnant, and that your wife gave you a second chance- because no matter what she said about "til death", she could still have decided to leave you. Don't undermine all of that with justifications and rationalizations.
@3: "All those comments, I can't imagine why conservative voters seem to relish pooping on the left's political ideals."
Gosh, it's because conservative voters hate leftist ideals. You've cracked the code! Brilliant!
@10: "There is nothing self hating about gay republicans"
You're constantly trying to shame healthy happy posters here, you insincere derp.
Mr Horstman - Well, we've recently had suggestions of disenfranchisement for Wrongthink.
If one accepts people's own standards, then some dreadful things are often done out of concern for others. There are Christians who appear sincere in claiming that they push conversion therapy because they want gays to go to heaven, too. As forcing conversion therapy on someone is worse than preferring Mr T to Mrs C (or, say, Scylla to Charybdis), I can conceive it possible that even Mr Stealth COULD sincerely (even if wrongly) be trying to make general improvement in the world. As he has not yet shown his work, it is valid for the moment for people to infer his motives to be impure and unsatisfactory.
As for your question, dealbreakers do appear to be expanding both in number and scope. And I have long thought that many people don't at heart want the enemy to reform. In an imagined world in which one can impeach six impossible Presidents before breakfast, I can see how that fits.
@34 ok I am listening. I say “I cannot keep our agreement anymore”. There will be follow up questions. Eg “Which part?” Do I answer that? Of course I do. Ultimately, whatever words you use, the information you are conveying is the same.
Yes I should have at least said I was thinking about it. Told her I was struggling. Like I said at the beginning, with more communication I might not have gone through with it. But at the time I was convinced there was no problem with our relationship, that the issue was all me. Now I think it was both.
There was really no time to work on the marriage, but if I had told her I was thinking about cheating she would probably have quit her job. She probably would have pressured me to join a sex addict group. (I probably wouldn’t have.) And yes I robbed her of those options. But again, at the time I didn’t think that any amount of work on the marriage would help this problem. I thought it was all a personal problem about my sex drive. (Now I think it was a combination.) If that was right (and maybe it wasn’t) then we would have been back in the exact same situation.
Again, for the 10th time, I am NOT saying what I did was the best option. It was the WRONG option. I should not have cheated and I should have communicated more than I did. What I am saying is that your option was, POSSIBLY, worse.
@36 yes. I would rather find out once at the end. But of course both are awful. Only thing I would add is that you don’t know my wife. She is not “most women”. I knew she meant it when she said she wouldn’t leave.
Sorry to be so defensive. I am obviously still doing a lot of self justification. Some of these things sound callous. My point is that every option had enormous costs. Everyone (especially you guys) is working with incomplete info. So don’t assume you have all the answers.
@5 SWITCH: Before I ream your sorry gay Mein Trumpfy apologist ass out with a hoe handle, I second the comments of DonnyKlicious' @23 et al. Here's my two cents' worth to add:
I hope that for what you blindly--and so stupidly---support, your limp, pink pickle grows unsightly warts, shrinks, falls off and you couldn't even PAY someone a million dollars to fuck you. I guess it's like Terrence Stamp said to the shitfaced coal miner in The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert: 'There. NOW you're fucked."
@37 why do you insist on replying to all my comments with more and more dumb bitchery?
I always admired the creative energy that goes into particularly detailed curses or particularly elaborate methods of bullying. There's an art to comeuppance. I'm usually not so direct, though. My husband knows how to be direct and to hit where it hurts in more of a confrontational manner, I'm more of a dismissive type. I'm not averse to that, but there's something about the cold-and-clinical I-don't-have-time-for-you aesthetic.
Generally though, our subjects are extremely willing and thank us for the pleasure. I'm not sure I'd feel comfortable giving away my creative energies for free on an ungrateful subject, especially one unlikely to even get why they deserve it. Your attention is a reward, reward wisely.
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