They say ‘Birds of a feather, all flock together…’ and the older I get the more I can see this as truth.
Everyone has friends and acquaintances in their life, that while you get along with them and enjoy their company, you might not always see eye to eye. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. It helps to learn and broaden your horizons to interact with different ideas and thoughts of others.
I have friends who are happily married – I have friends who are single. And then I have friends who do questionable things within their relationship to their spouse. It makes for funny conversation between my husband and I – our own little personal soap opera we can sit back and watch.
“I can’t believe she did that!”
“What do you think he’s going to do?”
Now when I was single, it was easier to listen to the drama, keep secrets, and create alibis. but once I myself was in a committed relationship, eventually what was once entertainment became more disturbing. Especially after my husband became friends with the same people. After a while, I could feel myself distancing from the ones I once considered like family. It wasn’t as funny to go out for a girl’s night, watch who was flirting behind their husband’s back, or cheating on their girlfriend, who was deleting phone numbers and texts like crazy so they wouldn’t get caught.
Sure we would kinda laugh about it, shake our heads and my husband would say, “I’m so glad we are NORMAL.”
But after a while, I felt like I was condoning and even helping support the behavior. Relationships, and even families (and especially when kids are in the mix), suffer when two people are un-loyal and dishonest. It’s a domino effect. You may not even see it happening, but every action causes a reaction, and on down the line.
And it isn’t fair – it’s not fair to the person you are keeping a secret FROM; did they really do anything to YOU for you to not be honest to them about the things you know or even helping to conceal?
And it isn’t fair to you-to be put in a position of keeping someones lies from coming to light.
I’ll keep a secret if I must-but I will also first tell you, “I won’t tell nobody, but my husband don’t count.” Because that is the one person I cannot keep anything from. It even goes against our sacred bond of marriage for me NOT to tell him about my day. And if my day includes helping you tell your spouse you were with me, so they don’t find out you were actually at your “side guy’s” apartment, then that’s what I’m going to say to my husband.
The above scenario drives my point even farther: Its not fair to the one that the cheater convinces to cover them. That person is put in a position of having to betray a trust, one way or another. They either betray their spouse with untold secrets, in order to be a “ride or die” kind of friend. Or they betray their friend by being honest to their partner. Secrets only go so far – and while you’re ready to cover your bestie and help her keep her marriage AND keep some strange on the side, your partner might not be. Why force them to make that choice as well?
I prefer to socialize with honest people. Be it singles or couples. I don’t have any problems within my marriage, and I believe positivity breeds positivity. Just as negativity breeds negative energy. And I don’t want the negative vibes to cross over. So while they are my friend and I love and care about them, I distance myself when they are doing things that they shouldn’t in a committed relationship. If I’m not around as much, I can’t condone. I can’t provide an alibi. I can’t help that way.
If I get those late night calls asking for advice, I can support and try to offer guidance. That feels better than saying, “Go for it! YOLO!” And “Just say you were with me!”
Not only do I want someone to be happy and have a good marriage-but I want it for myself. And if they aren’t willing to work on it, and choose to be unfaithful, then I don’t mess with them as much. It’s the only thing I can do to not only show that I can’t support the behavior; but I also can’t allow it to affect my relationship. I can’t allow myself to be put in the position of choosing who to betray.