AfroerotiK

Erotic provocateur, racially-influenced humanist, relentless champion for the oppressed, and facilitator for social change, Scottie Lowe is the brain child, creative genius and the blood, sweat, and tears behind AfroerotiK. Intended to be part academic, part educational, and part sensual, she, yes SHE gave birth to the website to provide people of African descent a place to escape the narrow-mined, stereotypical, limiting and oft-times degrading beliefs that abound about our sexuality. No, not all Black men are driven by lust by white flesh or to create babies and walk away. No, not all Black women are promiscuous welfare queens. And as hard as it may be to believe, no, not all gay Black men are feminine, down low, or HIV positive. Scottie is putting everything on the table to discuss, debate, and dismantle stereotypes in a healthy exchange of ideas. She hopes to provide a more holistic, informed, and enlightened discussion of Black sexuality and dreams of helping couples be more open, honest, and adventurous in their relationships.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Cheating



I was married for a brief period of time so long ago I sincerely don’t remember when I got divorced. I think it was 93 or 94 but it someone showed me my divorce decree (which I have NO idea where mine is) and it said 95 I wouldn’t be shocked.  We were married in 89 and we separated in 91.  When the actual divorce was finalized is beyond me however. 

The reason my ex-husband and I separated is because he cheated on me.  The entire marriage was unhealthy but of the four years we were together, two years were good, two were extremely horrible.   Oddly enough they weren’t consecutive years.  My ex-husband was a pathological liar (a theme that has been consistent in my partners throughout my life) and he was emotionally abusive.  If I didn’t know any better, I would say that he trained under my mother because he was the male (extremely handsome) version of her. 

I put him out the first time he cheated.  I had told him from day one, “Don’t cheat. If you feel like you want to have sex with someone else, come to me FIRST.  Let’s talk about it, let’s figure out if it’s just a physical attraction, if you are unhappy in the relationship, let’s get to the source of your feelings BEFORE you cheat.  Once you cheat, our trust is destroyed and I can never trust you again.  All I ask is that you let me leave the relationship with my dignity before you decide to cheat.”  Apparently, those instructions were too complicated for him to grasp because he cheated anyway. 

I put him out the first time I found out he cheated.  Apparently, he had been cheating with a woman almost the entire time of our relationship but that was not the woman I found out about.  There was no room for negotiation, no need for counseling at that point.  My mother was a mistress all my formative years and I saw first-hand how deceptive men could be when they were cheating.  I was willing to tolerate the emotional abuse but cheating was my hard limit.  Clearly, he had no desire to be married to me any longer because he broke my one cardinal rule. 

I wasn’t enlightened at the time.  I wasn’t at all self-aware or introspective.  I was intelligent by nature but I hadn’t explored, read, studied, or research 1/10th of the things I’ve done in the decades since I put him out.  I hadn’t examined my own issues nor had I decided that I needed to work on or heal myself from my childhood traumas.  I couldn’t even have admitted to myself that I had childhood traumas at the time because I was still of the, “My mother beat me and I turned out fine,” mindset.  I had low self-esteem but I would have told you at the time that it was high.  I was average.  I was still relaxing my hair and an unquestioning Christian.  I was not at all the evolved and conscious person I am today. 

I said all of that to say this.  I didn’t cheat on him to pay him back.  I didn’t take him back and forgive him time and time again.  I didn’t stalk the woman he cheated with and try to make her life hell.  For as average and mediocre as I was at the time, I didn’t do any of the classically dysfunctional things so many average and mediocre people do.  I had my hard and fast limit and when he crossed it, I ended things succinctly and I didn’t look back.  I found out he cheated and he packed his things that day and he was gone.  There was a brief period, or about a month and a half, more than a year after we separated that we tried to reconcile and he told me how he was going to therapy and how much he was going to be a better man for me.  Turns out he was cheating on me with two other women during the reconciliation.  I confronted him, with one of the women as soon as I found out, and I have never seen him since. 

I’ve been divorced over twenty years (I think).  Cheating and adultery is entertainment these days when it wasn’t back then.  Cheating is so commonplace these days, people don’t even see it as a hard limit, they expect cheating in the relationship.  The same people who are cheaters are offended and outraged when their partner is cheating on them.  I simply can’t be that dysfunctional.  I can’t allow that much drama in my life.  If you don’t want me, fine, move on and let me move on.  I’m not for every one, I get that.  I do, however, bust my ass to make my relationships work, even more so now than I did when I was in my 20s and stupid.  If you don’t value, cherish, appreciate, and love me enough to work at our relationship, if you find someone else more appealing, cool, go pursue a relationship with her and I’m going to make space in my life for more healing and introspection. 

If people today no only don’t set hard and fast limits about cheating, but they lie and cheat and deceive their partners, if they are having internet relationships, texting relationships, if they are having sexual relationship with other people while supposedly committed to someone how can any relationships ever be healthy?  If you can turn on the TV and see a dozen shows at any giving time about cheating how on earth are you ever going to say to yourself that you won’t cheat, let alone that you will end the relationship at the first sign of cheating?  I think cheating, revenge cheating (Is that a thing?  I’m sure there’s a name for it) and the acceptance of cheating is so commonplace that even the long lasting relationships are victims of it.  How can we ever get to a place of having healthy relationships ever again? 

I have lots of ideas of how to show people healthier models of relationships (and I’m fully acknowledging that I’ve never had a healthy relationship other than in my mind) but people are so desperate to hold on to their dysfunction they don’t want to listen.  (I feel like the word dysfunction is my most used word).  Black culture promotes cheating.  TV promotes cheating.  Music promotes cheating.  And here I am, little ole me, trying to beat the drum of emotional maturity.  I don’t think anyone hears it. 

6 comments:

daniel said...

hmm.... I personally am not a very jealous person. As long as I know my woman loves me more than any other man and that I'm the most important man in her life. As long as I can feel that deep sincere love... well then a little fun lustful (discrete) sex with another man wouldn't bother me. It might even make our sex life a little more exciting and actually be kind of enjoyable. And it doesn't have to result in me having sex with another woman. The only things I would expect are complete honesty and discreteness. I don't want her to keep things from me or lie to me. And don't embaress me by fucking my associates.

Va Gentleman said...

I agree with almost everything you are saying in this essay. I am so sorry to see what you have gone through. I have dealt with some of that myself, but nothing like what you deal with every day. My only disagreement is that not all Black culture promotes cheating..but the parts that get the most attention on TV, online and so on does, to the detriment of us all. Black men do a lot of dumb things..but some (note I said some) Black women do too. True love requires work at all times from all involved. That means handling your baggage AND your partner's AT THE SAME TIME. It means compromise. It means doing what needs to be done. You wonder why the divorce rate is 50 percent? The above is enough for that..then add in the other stuff in life like money issues and so on. Daniel made good points. But most of us are more jealous than him. Period. Honesty and discretion can help you overcome just about all issues you BOTH bring into a relationship...IF you are BOTH committed. Otherwise...you are both screwed. And you don't need tabloids on TV or elsewhere to cause that.

Daniel said...

well said brother

AfroerotiK said...

Having and open relationship is not the same as cheating. Let's not get the two confused. Cheating is lying, it's being selfish, it's betrayal. It's hurtful to all parties involved, to the entire family.

Va Gentleman said...

Agreed. Unfortunately, some people just are wired to do the bad thing, no matter what. Lots of folk say that any kind of open relationships are wrong, something like homosexuality and/or bisexuality. However, many of these same folk have or would do such if he or she had the chance. That is another conversation for another day. With that said, if you are going to cheat and hurt your relationship and your significant other AND you pretty much are cool with it and don't care about consequences or anything else...then you are a cold POS and you deserve to be alone. The one you hurt should dump you, move on, and never look back, like the author did.

AfroerotiK said...

People are not hard-wired to do wrong. They are not taught accountability for their actions and they let their selfish desires outweigh their commitment.