This whole Kwame thing has me thinking about cheating, specifically when you’re the one being cheated ON, and I gotta say Carlita Kilpatrick’s (public) reaction has been a pretty good example of what you SHOULD do when you catch your mate/spouse/SO/whatever cheating.
I’m the first to admit that cheating isn’t always an indication of love lost between to people. You can be with the most wonderful person in the world, but if there’s something lacking (no matter how small it may seem) that’s a door for someone who fills that need to come through. Not only that, but sometimes, sometimes, shit just happens. You don’t plan it. You’re not looking for it, it just happens. I’m not talking late-night-out-drinking-with-friends/coworkers-getting-drunk-and-knocking-boots type shit happening. I’m talking about that one time in a million where your guard is down and the right person just HAPPENS to come on by. Now, I have to say this particular reason for cheating…it’s really a pretty piss poor excuse, but it happens. Which is why it’s the “shit happens” reason. Because (all together now) shit happens.
My personal approach to cheating (or, rather, being cheated on), came together right before I got married. My husband was doing a lot of touring at the time, and I told him, flat out, right before we were married “Shit happens. Just don’t let it follow you home.” I’m not dumb. I’ve been to plenty of concerts and shows (big and small) and I know how those groupie heffas are. Some just don’t care. If my man is out on the road for months at a time and has a moment of weakness, so be it. I just don’t want to hear about it, and I don’t want it coming home with him. This means no babies, no diseases, no crazy stalker heffas who don’t get the idea of “one night stand”. None of it. The minute it hits my doorstep, we’re going to have problems. It also means don’t come confessing to me. I’m forgiving, but you catch me on a bad day and you’ll be chilling on the curb.
So here are my thoughts on being cheated on, and what to (and not to) do when you find out about it:
1. The one IN the relationship (cheater) bears the largest portion of blame.
No matter what the circumstances, this is, and will always be, true. I can’t think of any situation where the opposite would be true. Even if the person they were cheating with (here on out known as the co-cheater) knew they were in a relationship, the cheater knew before anyone else. Therefore the cheater bears the majority of the blame.
2. Blaming the co-cheater is a waste of time.
This one is related to the first one. I’ve seen women make this mistake more often than men. Instead of getting mad and confronting the cheater, they get mad and go after the co-cheater. WRONG MOVE! As I said above: The one in the relationship bears the largest portion of the blame. You can let the co-cheater know that the cheater is in a relationship and has been lying to the both of you, if you feel (or know) that the co-cheater is unaware of this fact. However, the blame does not rest heavily on the co-cheater (except in cases where the co-cheater happens to be family or close friends…at which point you may want to reevaluate your friendships and maybe disown a few family members).
In cases where the co-cheater is aware of the fact that the cheater is in a relationship, confrontation shouldn’t really go beyond letting the co-cheater know that you know. If they know the cheater is in a relationship and they sleep with them anyway, they obviously couldn’t care less whether or not you get upset or pissed off. So don’t waste the emotional, physical, or mental energy to cuss them out or threaten them with violence. They don’t care.
3. Relationships can rebound from cheating; but don’t expect it to be the way it had been.
Some folks throw in the towel once infidelity has been discovered. I don’t think that’s always necessary. I’m not one of those rose-colored-glasses optimists but I do think that some relationships (I repeat: some relationships) can be salvaged after cheating. It takes work on both parts, and the cheater can’t expect the cheatee to just trust them right off the bat. There’s going to be some mistrust and suspicion, especially immediately afterwards. If you can, and want to, work on the relationship, it can survive. But it ain’t easy, and it ain’t gonna happen overnight.
4. Cheating isn’t about looks.
One thing that my friends and I (and everyone else) have been talking about is the fact that Christine Beatty doesn’t even compare to Carlita Kilpatrick looks-wise. There’s even an email going around comparing her to Scottie Pippen (which is just wrong, but so damn funny anyway). People can’t understand why Kwame would pick this over this. What we fail to realise is that cheating has nothing to do with looks (ok, I can’t say this is the case 100% of the time, but for the most part it is). It has more to do with the connection and chemistry between two people. Sometimes that fresh connection is just too much to resist. Not that I’m justifying cheating. I’m not. Adultery is pretty low on my list of commandments to break. But this is the reality of things. It sucks, but that’s how it is.
5. There is a difference between emotional infidelity and physical infidelity; but both can be equally devastating.
This one sort of speaks for itself. It’s probably easier to get beyond emotional infidelity, but it still leaves a scar on the relationship.
6. It is never the cheatee’s fault.
Ok, so maybe “never” is a broad brush, but 99.9999% of the time, there is little the cheatee could have done to prevent the cheater from cheating.
7. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Or however that saying goes. To beat an oft beaten dead horse, communication is important. If there is a weakness in your relationship, address it before it leads to something bigger.
For example: Your SO doesn’t share your libidinous nature. Not that they aren’t good, they just aren’t the sex hound you are. Once every other day is enough for them, but three times a day is just getting by for you. Talk with your SO, you never know what could come of it. They could tell you to head to adultfriendfinder.com (thanks to Jeremy for bringing it to my attention that this website even exists…you nasty freak lol) and find yourself a discreet playmate to satiate your raging appetite. Or they could tell you to get over yourself and find a hobby that helps you expend some of that extra energy in a non-sexual manner.
Of course you could talk about this before you get too deep into your relationship, or address it when it does come up, and therefore stem the problem before it becomes the 400 lb gorilla in the room. But this takes some openness and honesty and the ability to deal with the fact that your perfect match may have some parts that don’t match up with yours exactly. A tall order for most people.
8. Get over it.
Yep. Get over it. They cheated. You ended the relationship. It’s over. Now move on. Don’t sit there and dwell on it. Don’t become bitter over it. Don’t hold the next person responsible for what the last one did. Learn the lessons that are there to learn and K.I.M.