Author: Janice Bowles
From: Carmel Valley
Blogging since: February 2010
Post Title: Are You a Victim If Your Spouse Cheats?
Post Date: March 1, 2010
My husband stepped out with a young honey one day. He needed to grow and the marriage structure didn’t permit the kind of lessons he needed to learn, so he chose to do it in this way…to my horror! Believe me, I blamed and screamed and played the victim for a while. I needed to do that. But I didn’t stay in that place because it’s not a good place to be. Rather, I took the huge upheaval in my life as an opportunity to examine myself and to grow so that I could first and foremost be happier within myself, and second, in a relationship, whether it was with him or someone else.
Post Title: Does Marriage Work?
Post Date: May 31, 2011
It’s a fair question, don’t you think, when we look around and see so much cheating going on. I wonder what your answer would be. Mine is “yes, it does work…for some people.” The problem is, it really doesn’t work for everyone. There are so many ways for people to be together in a relationship — successful ways that don’t fit the norm. Given the diversity of our histories — our wounds, our vulnerabilities — it’s ludicrous to think that we would all be happy in the same paradigm.
Post Title: Why Do People Cheat?
Post Date: September 12, 2011
My husband of seventeen years cheated. I’ve come to the conclusion that his actions had more to do with where he was in his own life than our marriage. Certainly, the weaknesses in our marriage played a part, but they weren’t the biggest cause of what happened.
What was? Well for one thing, we found that the marriage certificate was actually hurting our relationship. Both of us came from very controlling backgrounds and after a while, all of the “rules” began to get in the way of our love. So he had an affair and we got a divorce, which took us out of the grip of the rules, and lo and behold, our love began to flourish. Instead of “until death do us part,” we came up with our own agreement as to how we would be together. A way that works for us. If or when our agreement stops working, we will revisit it and change it so that it fits how we’ve grown. Today we are happily divorced and together.
Our new level of being together did not come instantly. In fact it happened over a period of time (years), with both of us doing our personal growth work in order to gain the wisdom and insights that have allowed us to go deeper with each other. I think when cheating happens, it’s not a good idea to just “cut your losses and run.” There is a lot to learn from the situation, and an impulsive decision just might bring regrets down the line.
Post Title: Did You Knowingly Marry Mr. Wrong?
Post Date: September 20, 2011
I was young...newly graduated from college and faced with “what’s next?”...a daunting question. Even though I had my degree, I had no desire for a career (a concept I now have a hard time believing about myself), so by default, marriage was the answer. Larry and I dated at the University. I liked him. We had a good time at school, including good sex. But after graduation, we split and went our separate ways. I missed him, or maybe it wasn’t exactly him, but that I was just feeling the emptiness of no longer having the whirlwind activities of college to fill up my life. So during one of our frequent phone conversations, Larry asked me to marry him. I said yes.
Everything was okay at first. We were apart and I had a wedding to plan, china and crystal to pick out, a pretty dress to choose. The trouble began when after three months of being apart, Larry joined me a few days before our wedding. It was then that I realized, “oh shit...this is all wrong.” From the first moment I saw him, I felt dread creeping up through my body. The wedding fantasy was great; the reality, um, not so good.
Why did I do it? Why didn’t I call it off? Quite simply, I didn’t have the guts.
[Posts have been edited for length]