I was thinking quite a bit on Thursday night about men who cheat. A dear friend of mine stopped by my house that night to tell me something that happened to her that evening. I won’t tell you her real name. I will just call her “Lori”. Lori was visibly shaken and for a split second I thought she was going to tell me some really bad news because I knew that she just went for her annual physical.
Let me back track a little bit. In 2008, Lori met a man that she fell in love with. I will call him “Steve”. Lori would not admit that she was in love with Steve, but I knew better. It was very obvious that Lori was totally besotted with him. I won’t go into all the details for obvious reasons, but Lori allowed the relationship to progress much too quickly because she was really taken by this man. I think that Lori also really wanted to be in a relationship. Three weeks after meeting Steve he started spending more time in Lori’s house than he was in his own house. They became like a married couple. I wondered what happened to the period of courtship and getting to really know each other. I did mention to Lori that she may want to think about slowing things down a bit and I cited the reasons why and left it at that. I think it is okay to speak up when you see that a dear friend could be heading for a crash. Lori also has two children and when you have children, you really have to be careful how you present another man to them. It is one thing if it was just Lori living in the house by herself, but with kids I feel that you really have to be careful bringing another man in to share the same space. Children sometimes will resent you and despise the guy when you bring a man into your space so quickly. It also gives children a message that is not entirely positive for when they start dating. I said my peace and then left Lori to do whatever it is that she wants to do. Lori and Steve are both grown people over 40 and whatever transpires in their relationship is up to them. I was just a concerned bystander.
As the weeks went by I noticed some things happening that led me to believe that Steve was sweet talking another woman besides my friend Lori. I decided to mind my own business because even though I suspected Steve was cheating I was not absolutely sure. I could have been wrong. It is also not a good idea to get involved in other people’s relationships. As a friend I can sit down and listen when you want to talk but I am very reluctant to getting involved beyond that.
Low and behold, one night Lori found Steve in his apartment with another woman and all hell broke loose. From then on the relationship had more problems, but Lori would not end the relationship though because she was so in love with Steve. Love is not something that you cannot turn on and off like a water faucet. Lori was hurt and very stressed out, but because she was so emotionally attached to Steve she would not let go. Besides catching him with another woman, she had been catching him in lies as well. Never the less, Lori hung onto Steve until one day Steve decided to end their relationship and disappeared.
Lori was heart-broken, but put up a front. I knew better though. For some reason she would not admit to being hurt just like she would not admit that she was madly in love with Steve. It was plain as day that Steve had a hold on her. I have no idea why she will not admit how she feels about a man. Anyway, since she would not admit that she was very hurt I figured maybe it was just a defense mechanism to get over it so I played right along.
Fast forward to Thursday and four years later. Lori runs a couple of errands after work and who does she see? Yep, Steve. After four years Lori runs into Steve again. That was the news she had to tell me. Well, at least thank goodness it had nothing to do with her health.
I could see that Lori was visibly shaken. I asked her how she felt about seeing Steve again after four years and she told me that she did not know how she feels, but I could see the elation in her body language; especially in her eyes. I also noticed that Lori was already turning to putty in Steve’s hands. Steve spotted her first and made his move. He said all the right things and Lori was elated to hear it all. What woman wouldn’t when you have loved a man with your heart and soul. I have to mention that Steve knows how to lay on the charm and talk a good game. He is a sweet talker extraordinaire and very forward. There is nothing wrong with that if you are being sincere. So here begins the second chapter of Lori and Steve. I am staying out of it and I sincerely hope for Lori’s sake that Steve really has changed.
What I am really happy about is that over the past four years Lori was able to forgive Steve for hurting her. Forgiveness is so important. With many private heart to heart talks with God Lori was able to forgive Steve and move forward. Holding a grudge and being bitter and angry can and will fester like an illness. Working through forgiveness is always the better choice. Forgiveness though does not necessarily mean that it is wise to let the person back into your life, but lets hope for the best for Lori’s sake.
Or keep calm and find yourself a John Thornton. Either one will do perfectly.