Thursday, 20 June 2019

Catching a Cheater and Rethinking What True Love is

A long time ago I was in a relationship with a girl who at some point began seeing another guy behind my back. I was told multiple times by different people that they had seen them together, yet I was reluctant to believe. I actually even doubted them as I was in denial.

During this time I sometimes began to pass by her house and ask the doorman if she was home. I’m not sure if the guy sympathised with me or what, but he used to tell me whenever that XYZ car would pass by her. Eventually he once asked me for porno magazines. True story. Obviously I delivered.

This memory had been deeply stored in my subconscious, because yesternight was the first time to think about it in maybe 20 years.

Not much later, I called her at home once — yes, before mobile phones — to be told that she was out. Well, to be exact, I let a girl friend call, since it was one of the parent who would pick up, and they did. Being the weekend, the girl had lied and said she was sick and staying home. So knowing the time she usually goes home, I left my three friends nearby 10 minutes earlier and went to hide behind a tree under her house.

Exactly on time, busted: I saw her on foot heading to the entrance of the building to be followed by the guy’s car which I already knew by then. That was the case because she let him drop her a tiny bit before so that no one sees her. Then Abra-Cadabra here was I materialising out of thin air right in front of her like a Ninja Dark Night. The remarkable thing was that I was so ecstatic of the success of my detective work, I took her to my buddies to share with them how I caught her. Perhaps this showing off was nothing but a defence mechanism by one hurt ego. I remember the girl was in such a shock, she was smiling all along. You know the nervous smile. So there we were both smiling while I recount the story to my friends. A bit of shouting and then I took her home.

Hilariously, the guy called me later on at home. He said there is nothing in-between them and blablabla. Yeah. I will likely never know what did actually transpire, but they were meeting in secrecy, so. 

Surprisingly, I didn’t leave her right then and there. I have no idea why or how. Well, maybe I do: It was a long-term relationship as it was also a kind of a love story. Despite being inexperienced teenagers, there was still a whole lot of passion and hormones and insecurities and expectations to deal with. In actual fact, I recall that one time I smashed my windshield with a single punch while fighting with her in the car. To let the insurance pay, I had to go issue a report from the police station, saying that some kids threw a rock at the car while I driving. Man! This was totally unlike me, yet it was still me.

So, yes, probably time was indeed needed before ending it all. It did happen some months later. 

As I matured, whenever coming across adults acting the same way I remember younger, foolish me and just shake my head in disbelief. Are they still there? I then feel grateful to have crossed that life stage all the way back then
— almost a quarter of a century into the past. Truly, there is nothing like experience when it comes to learning. You can neither buy it nor study it. Paraphrasing Peter McWilliams: You must do; learn from the doing then [if you wish] teach from the knowing. A good reason experience remains the mother of all wisdom.

I still can’t believe how this memory had been repressed in such a way. As mentioned, this is the absolute first time to cross my mind. Let alone, put it into words.

The lesson younger me learned from this experience is to never get attached to a woman (or man) under the pretext of love. As such, my relationship philosophy from then on became: If you want to be with someone else, then please go. I want you to be happy, selflessly. If not with me, then without me. True love does not include getting jealous or being possessive; not even getting upset or hurt when one’s expectations are not met. 
For a truly a genuine connection, hence a successful relationship, the person you love must feel absolutely free. For what will be will be. 

And there never is a convincing reason to force things.
On that same note, more about the difference between Love and attachment can be found in this poetic article.
Why I Choose to Remain a Non-Dad for Now — Reflections on Being Childless is another philosophical exposé with a self-explanatory title, which you may dig. Almost conversely, there is also this list-article: Things I Miss From Being in a Relationship.

Then on a parallel note, Codependency: What Being Addicted to Someone Means is a more psychological piece dealing with one type of dysfunctional relationship.

Ironically, said attitude was interpreted by later partners as “Don’t care” or as “Being cold”, which is not true. It is their own definition of love and care that needs rethinking. I was there myself yet chose to transcend all the drama and nonsense. You see, choosing not to be led by your emotions does not mean you’re cold or heartless; it means you’re wiser. 

When two decades later I happened to catch another girlfriend cheating, or trying to cheat more likely, older me then confidently — and smilingly — opened the door and told her: Please. Those two experiences remain the only ones of their kind.

This is not to say I never cheated myself, because I did. And I remain honest about it. In fact, following that early incident I mindlessly happened to cheat on the same girl as well — with a vengeance. I probably thought that I had a carte blanche to do whatever I did. Certainly, there are no winners in such cheating equation.
The good news is, when we mature we come to realise that cheating is not as cool as our younger selves used to think. Personally though, it took me more years and experimentation to reach such insight. I hold that I cheated because I could; rather than because I was not satisfied in the relationships. For all the thrill and excitement and rush and adrenaline resulting from doing something [dangerous] one shouldn’t be doing. Despite the fact that I rarely, if ever, went to look for such adventures they still, somehow, occurred.

The truth remains, if you’re not happy in a relationship, just leave; either remain single in the first place and enjoy the freedom or find someone else. As simple as that. It is certainly much healthier for you and them than remaining in dysfunctional relationships in which one or both partners are cheating. 

As stated multiple times, my current relationship philosophy which I do my best to embody is summarised into Rumi’s beautiful words: Give me more wine or leave me alone.     

In the very end, let us all take it from Droopy: You Know What? Cheaters Never Win

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