Sandra from Inglewood, California asks:
I’m living with my husband and a friend of ours, and I expect my husband is having an affair with him. He seduced me in the beginning, I believe, to get my approval for him to stay with us, and now he’s hitting on my husband. I fell in love with the guy, but now I really know why he was so attentive and so on. He really wanted my husband! (Who is also loving every minute of it.)
I don’t know what to do – I’ve been with him for 23 years and worked so hard all these years which is about to pay off due to an accident he had which I’ve been taking care of him and so on. Now, he’s about to settle and I have absolutely nothing saved, so what should I do? There is nowhere for me to go (but up or out?). Really, I’m financially strapped with no family or friends.
Greetings, Sandra, and thank you for sharing your situation. One thing that strikes me about your narrative is the fact that you simply cannot resist attempting to fit unconventional themes into very conventional definitions. Anytime we try to bind up the rollicking pleasures of Dionysus with the tight ligatures of Apollo, things don’t go so well. The man who has come to live with you most certainly represents the wild and novel energy of Dionysus. He is a force of disruption; true passion and raw seduction… All the calling cards of alchemy and transformation. It’s a dangerous thing, opening the door to the ravishing vampire who lurks beyond. Many people spend their entire lives guarding and fretting, lest the demon of love come truly calling; ravaging their marriages and waylaying their sense of moral consequence. Others aren’t so certain as to the role of free will in the matter at all. Who knows which is right? The outcomes remain the same. Like any vampire, once you let the devil in the kitchen, he’s going to prop himself by the fire and sit a spell. I say, it’s best at that point to just relax and enjoy the experience.
You wanted to walk on the wild side… to flirt with disaster… to find relief from years of sexual and romantic repression. It was like the breaking of a mighty dam. The waters gushed forth in raging rivers, cleansing and decimating all at once. You invited the pleasure in, now the cork is out of the respective bottle and so is the genie. And it isn’t going to be easy to stuff it back inside. You can’t give in to chaos and expect conformity. You wanted this man, so he took you and pleasure ruled the day. But then you thought this very nontraditional relationship should follow a traditional road. The two of you should be together once you‘d left your husband… after the payday of course. It would work out in the end, and all would be well. But it’s never that simple. You’re angry at your friend now, so you invent motives for his behavior that aren’t fair. He didn’t make love to you for a place to stay. I sense there are plenty of places he could stay. People like him. He came to stay with you because both you and your husband wanted him there. Because your marriage was dead, and you each needed to feel wanted by someone. Now you’re complaining, bemoaning his sexual orientation when, in fact, he never promised you anything.
My advice is to stop being so concerned about the money. Your husband isn’t going to toss you aside. The two of you have seen better times, but deep down you both still like each other. There’s a mutual contempt that a lot of married couples have after so many years, but your husband wants you there. And he‘ll want you there even after this settlement comes. But you’re going to have to decide a few things. This man is staying for awhile. If you ask him to leave, your husband might very well consider turning you out instead. Why not just learn to play nice with everyone? In your jealousy and prejudice, you’re failing to see a golden situation ripe with sexual promise. Why should it bother you? You’ve already been with both of them. Let go of that traditional mindset, and start looking for your role in the situation. You may find it’s one you really enjoy.
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