Understand Guilt and Pride Through Cheating

This may be the hardest piece for me to write thus far.

Returned from a house party on campus, I was sitting in front of my laptop scrolling through the photos people had just posted on Facebook. My message box popped up…

He: Hey, I’m not sure if you remember me…

Me: Yes, of course! You are his friend. What’s up?

He: Umm, I think you should know this… it’s really hard for me to say this because I’m his friend and also his roommate, but I just don’t think it’s right. And you have the right to know.

A horrible sinking feeling washed through me. The fear that you know something bad is about to happen.

He: I’m really sorry but I’m afraid that he’s cheating on you.

A mixture of confusion, anger, dread and panic kicked in.

Me: Thank you for telling me… can I ask how you know about this?

He: Well… I live with him, and in the past few months, he’s been bringing the girl home.

Photo by Mat Reding on Unsplash

Did I really not see it coming?

Could I not tell from the tone he sounded on the phone? The thoughtless Christmas gift?

Perhaps I knew, but I just avoided the confrontation for the fear of what I may find.

I cried, begged and pleaded. I promised to be a more attentive girlfriend and move closer to where he was.

It was already too late.

Watching the grey clouds moving faster with the wind, I sat on the couch, my phone in my laps. Two opposing voices inside my mind threatening to explode my skull…

Me: I kissed him.

A momentary relief sat in. Finally, I’ve told him.

He: What? You’re kidding me! You are telling me this over texts? When I’m on my way to vacation?

Me: I’m so sorry… I’ve been meaning to tell you but I was afraid. You’ve said if this happens, we’d be over. And I just spoke with my mom and that gave me the courage…

He: When did this happen?

Me: A month ago…

He: And you’ve hid this from me all this time? How could you do this to me? Did you not think of me when you did that?

Me: I’m really sorry… I only thought of the pain this would bring you after it had happened. I’m so sorry…

He: Who are you? I can’t believe this. Are you possessed?

Photo by Piero Istrice on Unsplash

The guilt and shame consumed me.

I lost all self-respect and could not trust my own judgement.

All kinds of questions and doubts occupied my head, and all I could content with is the internet.

What is wrong and right?

I despise cheating, but why have I done the very act that I deemed despicable?

Lying in bed, I read through my friend’s string of story about someone she knows…

Me: That was a beautiful love story.

She: Yeah, that takes a lot of courage. I don’t know if I’d be able to do that.

Me: What does?

She: Forgiveness. To forgive someone who has cheated on you. Maybe he could convince himself that she was young and curious, but it still takes a lot of courage to trust again.

Me: I’ve cheated and been cheated.

She: I know, so what do you think?

Me: I think in a relationship where both sides communicate honestly and authentically, cheating has no room. When you can share everything and talk about anything without the fear of being judged, that builds a solid protective wall and… maybe that’s the only way… after all, we can’t stop anyone from doing what they want to do.

Photo by Altınay Dinç on Unsplash

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