I was the one who held his tie out of the stream of vomit as he bent over a parking lot trash can, so upset was he at the realization that his 38 years of marriage were coming to an end.
I was the one who lent him dishes, lamps, rugs, and numerous other items when he abruptly moved out of the marital house and rented a place of his own, there to make a home for himself and two of the four kids who hadn’t yet flown the coop. They did not want to live with Mom.
I was the one who met him, at his request, at a housewares store to help him pick out sheets, comforters, pillows, flatware, shower curtains…in short, everything he needed to make his rental house a home for his kids and himself. He arrived with moist eyes and a racing pulse.
I’d been in B.’s presence several times while he bickered over the phone with his difficult wife. One evening, as we motored to the cabin they’d bought years earlier with hopes of enjoying family weekends together, he put her call on speakerphone for me to hear and judge for myself. I winced at the vitriol hurled between these uncoupling spouses. It was tremendously uncomfortable.
I was the one who was on hands and knees scrubbing the years-old crud off the wood floor of that cabin, who bobbed up and down with a squeegee while washing the windows there, reeking of ammonia and Windex. All those chores I did out of affection, concern, and necessity.
For the intervening 4+ years between his separation and impending divorce, I did all the heavy lifting. I was there for him at every pass. Any time he needed to talk. Any time he needed to vent or to cry. Any time he needed companionship, succor, warmth. And every time he just needed to fuck and feel desirable and not emasculated by the wife he’d come to loathe.
I’m the one who did all that heavy lifting — and for years — yet another woman has replaced me and is enjoying all the spoils. How does this happen? How did he throw me overboard so easily?
After taking up permanent residence in the cabin and returning the no-longer-needed borrowed goods to me, B. emailed to say he’d been “mixing it up with a beach gal” and that his dogs were “a chick magnet.” While running his dogs on a beach he’d forged a casual relationship with another woman. Shockingly, it turned into something “different” (his nondescript word).
That’s right: Those goddamned dogs of his AGAIN interfering with my sex life…
That’s right: B. actually CALLED IT QUITS VIA EMAIL. That prick couldn’t even honor the longevity nor the value of our discreetly-kept 26-yr affair with an in-person explanation and a gentle extrication.
For all my years of heavy lifting, I have nothing to show for it.
So I ask: Why bother lifting weight if you can’t show off the muscles?
A former mistress (26 years, on-and-off) describes the good, the bad, and the ugly of her long-term affair. Conclusion: Affairs aren't necessarily destructive if kept in the correct perspective. Our experience enhanced BOTH our marriages.
That is, until his marriage ended and we began to love each other. When the affair morphed into a relationship, well, that's when it stopped being fun for me. We have now irrevocably split.
Lately I've been writing about the man who took his place in the "off" years of that 26-year-long affair. He was a dynamic sexual partner but we, too, now have irrevocably split.
These are our stories.