611 – Chorka • 20

I found this fun spot in the Bible (Deuteronomy 22) where a lot of rules are laid down about what to do in the various cases of people being caught in marital infidelities. If the people are neither married nor betrothed and the chick is a virgin, someone usually gets paid off and the couple is forced to marry. (No attention is paid to whether the dude has had sex before.) If the woman is in a field and gets raped, she gets off free. Pretty much everyone else gets stoned to death. (And not in the good way.) Male, female, rich, poor, Italian lothario or American golf pro… even Republican WASPs. God pretty much has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to cheaters.

Now I don’t personally think that infidelity is a good idea, but for the record, I don’t think that anyone ought to be killed for it. Cheating is hurtful and disrespectful, and not even remotely worth the risk. Even at the top of my game I couldn’t continuously have sex for an entire day, but even if I could, how could that possibly balance against losing my wife for the rest of my entire life? The math just isn’t there.

Yet insane numbers of people do cheat on their own spouses. Around a quarter of all married men and about 15% of married women admit to straying. Who knows what the real numbers are. Most infidelities seem to be caused by seemingly unrelated flaws in the cheater, such as low self-esteem or an inability to cope with stress. Conflict avoidance or a fear of intimacy (ironically) are also common reasons. Because of this infidelity can often be successfully treated in a therapy setting.

But what would you do if you discovered your spouse was unfaithful? I think if there was a possibility of me never finding out that’d be the way to go, (and Lena has agreed not to tell me) but if you did find out… what then? I suppose I could eventually forgive, though forgetting would be harder. It would be extremely difficult not to want to kill the other party in slow and gruesome ways. (Unless it was a chick and there was video, then it’d be okay.)

So how would/did you handle it?

40 Responses to 611 – Chorka • 20

  1. I think the fact that so many stray is a backlash of the natural drive to have sex coupled with the restriction of “no sex before marriage or God smack you”. Two people get hot for each other, but instead of having sex and *then* developing a relationship, they get married, have sex, and find that the relationship is crap. Well, duh – it was based on sex. Straying would be expected, especially since “no divorce or God smack you” comes into play.

  2. Regarding the comic: Now the real question is…. which of them is going to wear the strap-on?

    Really, Kevin, you have reached a new low of taste. 😳 Wasn’t Violet married to Bunker? He isn’t dead yet.
    And troll-Morty will be devastated, devastated I tell you. And mortified (pardon the pun).

      • New low? Maybe…but it was funny and about the only thing that would convince Enkidu to actually get involved. Enkidu’s form matches personality; piglike. That’s why we love to hate him…her?

  3. The simple answer is don’t get married.
    Lets face it with the current divorce rate in America is it really worth it?
    Especially when you consider that after your partner gets bored they’re going to cheat and then with the loss of trust the relationship will end and being married one of you will end up paying at least half of what you make to not have sex, at least until the one getting paid manages to get married again.

  4. Well, i think that sex is overrated (hear me out!). If my Girl would hit the Sheets with someone else in a weak Moment, that would be okay. We have our own thing in our Bedroom, and we love each other. That means that we talk about how our Day was, we cook together, and we want to grow old together. It does not mean, that a small Mistake would wipe all the good things away. Besides, Monogamy is practically not natural (I’m not promoting cheating, i just want you to reconsider your persona lLuck, if someone is giving up everybody for YOU).

    • Yeah. I used to think that this would be something I could never get over… until I ended up with someone I really loved. I would still be terribly hurt and insecure about it, and it would take a long time to heal I think, but my opinion is much different than it used to be when I was younger.

  5. I didn’t promise not to tell. I promised not to cheat because I couldn’t help BUT to tell. I’m screwed up that way.

    I had a dream where Kevin cheated and left me. It was very realistic and I woke up sobbing. I was completely devastated and felt empty, used, etc. – my entire world came crashing down around me and I couldn’t deal. Even after I was awake it felt like it really happened for the rest of the morning and felt sick. It was horrible. That kind of devastation can only be followed by serious amounts of venom and hatred, if I managed to skate by the “please don’t leave me” groveling portion of the show.

    Telling the truth is one of the most important things to me in a relationship. I feel if you don’t have honesty, you have nothing. If you are cheating, you are lying. That is the biggest sin in a relationship to me. Honesty is what holds a relationship together. Cheating is a HUGE lie. It means you weren’t being honest about what you needs were and you weren’t honest enough to solve whatever problems you were having that needed to be solved by cheating. If you can’t tell your partner you have problems you have an even bigger problem. If you want to leave the relationship, then leave. Don’t say it is fine and then cheat.

    If I suspected my spouse were cheating on me, he’d be screwed to hide it. I’d turn into some kind of crazy Dick Tracy with the stalking and investigation. That would be the week that they would become paranoid from finding a continuous amount of weird shit at their girlfriend’s apartment, car, work, email, etc. They would only hope they came clean before I fleshed out my evil plan of punishment and vengeance.

    So, the answer to your question of “what would you do?” would be — to become very immature, mean, and angry. I’m not proud to say I would react that way, but I think that is the truth.

    Did I mention the arsenic pancakes?

    • Open relationships and marriages are okay as long as both parties are honest with each other and aware of what’s going on. It’s not for me, partly because I’m Christian but mostly because I think that all it can do is cause harm in the long run. I have been tempted from time to time but never have given in. I have been cheated on and while I did forgive, I couldn’t get over the betrayal of trust. If there’s no longer any trust in a relationship, then there is no relationship. It took months to get over the anger and I never did get over the betrayal. That was what ended the relationship. I know lots of guys who talk about their cheating ways as if it’s a cool thing to do, but they would go ballistic if they found out that they had been cheated on. I had to finally tell them that I no longer wanted to hear it. these are also the guys that when they are found out, they complain as to how it isn’t really their fault and didn’t deserve the vindictive response of their spouse. Yeah, right. I can’t judge others for their infidelities, but if both spouses didn’t agree to an open relationship, then cheaters will get what’s coming to them in the long run. I’ve seen it too many times to doubt that.

      • I once had a friend who cheated on his wife every opportunity he got… and he spent most of his time trying to create opportunities. I asked him once what he would do if he ever found out his wife was cheating on him and he said he’d leave her, no questions asked. Further he said there was no way she’d ever leave him for his own infidelities, should she ever find out.

        His logic failed him however when one of the couple’s mutual friends became pregnant with his child. His wife (also pregnant) divorced him.

        The thing that flummoxed me the most about this guy who cheated on every girl he ever dated, was how passionately I remember him at thirteen years old promising me he would never repeat the sins of his philandering father, who had destroyed their family with his own infidelity.

        I know it’s human nature and it’s instinctual and all that other crap, but no sex, especially not sex with a stranger, would ever be remotely worth the rest of my future with my wife.

  6. I think that perhaps one of the most natural human instincts is to experiment. It is why that I made sure my fiance understands that as far as I am concerned, we have an open relationship. That does not mean that I would go seek someone else out for sex, I honestly wouldn’t as I am not that big of a fan of sex, but it means that if she were to I wouldn’t have a problem with it. Lena hit on the note that kind of inspired me to bring it up that way, this way it wouldn’t have to be hidden. My fiance could be honest, go out and do it, and then we could move on. Also, conceding the open relationship means that should I not feel in the mood, I can deny sex and not really feel guilty of it. I’m not depriving her of it with someone else and I’m able to satisfy my own wants/needs at the same time.

    Humans are not naturally monogomaous, no matter what anyone would like you to believe about our evolutionary behaviours. It’s natural to crave a little extra attention and to find something different under the sheets. The trick is to do it safely and to not let that one time fling just for a bit of variety become a practiced habit. Then you’ve gone from cheating to possibly replacing your current lover/spouse with someone new.

    • I think it’s great you guys have this kind of relationship. It works very well for some people. And, as you know, it has to be about honesty or it won’t work. Good for you.

    • I think you hit the nail on the head with this. The problem with cheating is not the sex. It’s the lying. If my girlfriend/wife felt the need to sleep with someone else I’d be ok with it, as long as I knew about it from her and knew the reason why.

      I see relationships as best friends taken a step further. They are your partner in life, not just in sex. If you can’t be honest about every aspect of yourself with your partner, (including things they may not personally be interested in) and have them support you, maybe you aren’t meant to be together.

    • Of course, it is also perfectly “natural” to want to attack anyone you perceive as a threat to your resources, or as being from a different group as your own. Thus racism and other bigotries are just as natural as the desire to spread your seed far and wide. The reason I put it this way is that natural does not equate to good. If having an open relationship reduces frictions and makes the two of you happy, then by all means do so. However, I firmly believe (and this is not in opposition to anything you have said, Joe) that the measure of our cultural progress lies in our ability to recognize and transcend those instinctual urges that no longer serve us.

    • It can be difficult, as the person who catches your attention, you haven’t had to put up with all their normal living stress on a day to day basis. With new people there’s an excitement of the unknown, and you don’t know if they like to put people down constantly or need constant attention to force them out of bed to work in the morning. They’re tabula rosa and often the response can be similar in the opposite direction so both new people find they have time and attention for each other – whereas they know their partner, and their habits and the day-to-day stress that as a couple you have to do to build a world together (making effort to consider the other partners opinions, making space and time for them when you’re busy, making the effort to make your partners day a little better, listening to their job/health woes).

      It’s not really surprising that a new person can have a certain fascination about them.

      On the poly side, one has to be careful not to totally fall for a new person, which can be really devastating. I believe a lot of homosexual relationships have a similar issue (so far most occasions I’ve heard are from the female side) where a partner will “feel the need for opposite sex” and totally blows the core relationship.

      • I guess? I find that I am endlessly fascinated with Lena, and enjoy all the things that I had felt certain would eventually become irritants. I have to pick socks and shoes up all over the house, but it makes me giggle when I do because they are so cute and tiny. I’s almost like she has little kid feet.

        I suppose I don’t really feel those stresses you list, but I think it’s mostly because Lena and I both make a deliberate effort to truly support one another. I don’t feel resentful or put out or exhausted by her. I just feel warm and loved and happy.

  7. When I was 13-14, I had a girlfriend. She basically decided she wanted a close friend of mine WAY more than she wanted me, and started flirting and such with him. Strongly. Even in front of me.

    It really doesn’t bother me, though, so I thought nothing of it. I’m the exact opposite of the ‘jealous type’. When she dumped me for him and lost her virginity in a week afterwords I was a bit hurt, but that was probably more from “why not me?” than the “ANOTHER MAN GRRRR” mentality. We HAD been dating for just shy of a year, after all.

    Then SHE felt super guilty, and avoided me for about two years. We made up and became friendly acquaintances, possibly even friends, for a while. She then moved to another city in another province and I’ve not seen or heard from her since. Hope she’s having a good life.

    Basically, to answer your question and looking back at my past, I’d probably just ask her “Well you had a good time at least, right?”

      • I think that might be a narrow view of it Kevin. It can be hard for someone to deal with but some folk are kind of emotional secure enough (not saying the others are dreadful insecure, just that for some there are other priorities in life).

        If anyone was seeing the relationship as unimportant it sounds like TSED’s partner.

        Once one of my girlfriends wanted the proper relationship, waiting etc and having all the visual stuff to show off to her friends and mother. This was stuff she wanted (and like a fool, I helped create that world for her.)
        Only to get dumped when a friend of a friend (and a seriously unliked person by me) wanted sex and she decided that “normal” was boring. Oh she still expected me to “be friends” and provide her with a positive social image, she just wanted wild unsafe sex, booze (etc) as well but didn’t want anyone important to find out about it. The last part is why I didn’t qualify to meet this desire of hers – and she didn’t have many other unsatisfied desires at the time thanks to my efforts (guy w/ car, job and credit card).

        It took me a while to realise that people only want stuff they don’t have, and usually stop wanting/working for it when they do have it. Especially women.

        On your original comment Kevin. I’m poly. I don’t keep it a secret. When in a monogamous relationship (or even spending time with a person) then I keep it honest and if things don’t work then that get discussed and dcided. It’s damn hard spending special times though (birthdays, christmas parties, movie openings).

        I think when looking at the old laws it’s important to remember WHY they exist in that form.
        No decent contraception. Very little Sexual diseases in some areas…but even less medical help everywhere. Abortion is likely to result in death. Women considered to be minors because they tend to act selfishly and on impulse for that reason. Men expected to be the cogs of the family and community, with their path laid down by the Elders of each – you don’t like then you leave/cast out. Everything revolving around the law. Law of community. Law of Family.
        To mess about is to risk everything – not just for yourself, but for generations to come, and for the built up reputation and resources/contacts that have resulted from the sacrifice of several generations before you. Being the cuckold (raising someone elses bastard, is very expensive and often results in much stigma and proof of poor family control/commitment). As is introducing or giving to another family any kind of diseases…which were often seen not as bacteria/parasites but as punishment, condemnations, curses from God/Gods.

      • Yeah, you are.

        As I said, I’m just not the jealous type. I am also pretty used to being screwed over by women – even at that point in time – so another instance of it isn’t particularly surprising. I don’t know; I suppose I’m emotionally stable. I’ve never really considered it before, but I have noticed I’m extraordinarily difficult to offend or bother. On the other hand, I guess it definitely has affected me as I’m still single seven years later. (I have tried a little bit, none of those went well either.)

        A good ending will be “I suppose I’m very self sufficient emotionally.”

        • She clearly didn’t value the relationship since she chose to leave it, I’m only saying that perhaps you didn’t really value it either since it didn’t upset you afterwards.

  8. My wife and I are in a very committed relationship. One of us cheating on the other would be a very traumatic thing – for both of us. We’re both of the opinion that, if someone is in a relationship and wants “something else” they should just leave. Don’t stay in a relationship you don’t like and try to find something more “on the side”. Make a commitment one way or the other.

    That said, if I ever got infinitely stupid and did something infinitely stupid, this is likely what would happen:
    The day she finds out…

  9. I’m afraid in my case the question is rhetorical. Something like that would Hurt. A Lot. I don’t generally react with violence toward people, but I expect half of our physical possessions would be destroyed in the ensuing hissy-fit.

    I think a lot of semi-nomadic tribal people overreacted back in the day.

  10. I’ve dated four women in my life, my wife included. I’ve had sex with all four of them, and two of them cheated on me. My mom cheated on my dad. My dad cheated on my mom. But I have never cheated on anyone, and I never would. I wouldn’t even, before I was married, hit on a girl that I knew had a boyfriend, even when I knew their relationship wasn’t very serious. It’s not who I am. I couldn’t do it. I only know, vaguely, who one of the guys was that cheated with my ex. She was a friend of my wife’s before me and my wife got together, and my wife was told all about it and eventually told me. It’s not why I broke up with that girl, but even so I became extremely upset. Partly it was that she cheated on me, partly it was that she cheated in the apartment where we lived together, in the loft where I kept all my personal belongings. Like she went out of her way to snub me in my personal space. I know the guy’s name, I know where he works (I work there too, time to time) but I don’t know his face. I’ll keep it that way, because even now I want to hit him in the mouth with a tire iron. I told my wife if I ever found out she was cheating I’d leave her. Whether or not I killed/maimed/tied to my car bumper and dragged through the street the bastard sonofabitch involved depends on whether or not he knew she was in a relationship. I can’t really blame a guy who just thinks he’s getting lucky. But a guy who knows full well he’s sleeping with another man’s woman deserves what he gets. One of my wife’s coworkers is sleeping with another of her coworkers who is married. If it weren’t for that he and I could probably be friends. As it is I told him if I had that husband’s number I’d have called him and told him what was going on. I just cannot abide cheaters. Thankfully my wife feels the same way, and unlike other girls I’ve been with (two of them anyway) I actually believe her when she says she will stay faithful. She believes as you do Kevin, and I agree, it’s just not worth losing what I have.

    • “with another man’s woman ”

      Some of us don’t consider such things to be property or pissing rights, and that if such a neanderthal/animal attitude were appropriate then we’ll just go the whole hog and assert our alpha status.

      I’m surprised at the number of people (in the world) that consider retaliation, especially physical retaliation, as acceptable. Last time I checked getting violent or destroying a persons credit/property was illegal and much frowned on. As is getting drunk or angry and doing violent/destructive acts. Are these laws only supposed to apply when people feel like it?? (this also applies to females! who seem to think that it is now “ok” since they’re personally upset…)

      • Well I hope you never have sex with “another man’s woman” and find out that legality does not apply to irrational anger. I never said the way I feel is right. I only know that anger issues run in my family and I have no doubt that if I caught my wife in the act I would attack the poor fellow on the spot and likely try my damnedest to kill him. And later probably be arrested. But I doubt I’d give that much thought at the time.

        • The idea of self control can kinda take a back seat when you walk in on your spouse in bed with someone else. Right or not, I consider that to be a rather obvious fact. And while I do refer to Lena as “my wife”, there is no disrspect or ownership implied. She calls me her husband and the thought of it fills me with pride.

        • ” find out that legality does not apply to irrational anger. ”

          I hope so too, because I used to teach several martial arts and weaponry. With army guys. And worked security in RL for a while. So some punk decides to take extra-legal violence, … it’s his call

  11. It would hurt. But if I really loved her, I think I’d pardon.

    On another note, I had a “fuck friends”-type relationship with a married woman, which ended when I met someone special and just couldn’t get really interested by someone else. For the record, I think I would do it again. And I think it was wrong of me to do so, and that, on this at least, this makes me a jerk.

  12. I agree with other that the problem isn’t with the sex, it’s with the lying.

    People change, relationships change, desires change. A person who’s right for you now might not be five years in the future. Comitting to one person for life just seems silly to me.

    That said, I’ve never been In Love. Should that happen, my perspective may change.

  13. I’m all for other people having honest open relationships, but my husband and I have chosen to be strictly monogamous. We are both attracted to other men on a regular basis, talk about it, and even point out hot guys to each other, but actually straying is anathema. Since I have been with him, I am literally unable to complete a wet-dream, because I quickly tell the deam-guy, “No, I can’t because I’m married.” Apparently the circuit-breakers are fairly deep-seated. Why? Who knows? So what. We’re happy.

  14. I have a hard time taking this topic seriously below a comic with a strap-on in it.

    Anyhoo Greek law also said that if a man caught another man cheating with his wife he had the right to kill him. I found it interesting that their law would simply defer to the individual in this matter.

    If I understand right the law doesn’t look too highly on such behavior any more, so if I was married and caught another man with my wife I’d find the most humiliating thing I could to do to him. So much that even if he could find anything to report me for he or the police would be too humiliated / laughing to do much about it. The guilt helps too. My wife would get off a lot easier, as in completely, though I’d be heartbroken.

    Oh, FWIW, the only Biblical grounds for divorce is infidelity, and then it’s still optional.