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How sick is this?

Posted on Thursday, December 3, 2009 in Affairs/infidelity, Happiness, Honesty, Marriage, Parenting, Relationships

Maybe it isn’t so weird that a new dad would be cheating on his wife.

Babies do weird things to couples, like create stress that makes them unhappy for the first year (and then a continual slide as more babies arrive). So maybe that’s what sent Tiger Woods running into the arms of cocktail waitresses, party girls and nightclub hostesses; after all, he welcomed his second child barely 10 months ago.

man in shirt and tie 1

I don’t care how many nannies she has; his wife,
Elin, has got to be tired after chasing two little ones around.

It’s bad enough to discover your partner is screwing around on you, but it seems downright cruel if he’s doing it at the exact time you need him the most.

Think back to John Edwards; when his wife, Elizabeth, was in bed battling breast cancer, he was in bed with his mistress — yet another public figure canoodling when his wife was fighting for her life.

What’s up with that?

What’s up is “partner abandonment,” and guess who bears the brunt of it? Yep, women. Now, I hate it when I find studies that reflect poorly on men because I love men. But women who are diagnosed with cancer or multiple sclerosis are six times more likely to find themselves separated or divorced shortly after their diagnosis than if they were a man. Especially if she’s older.


“Why men leave a sick spouse can be partly explained by their lack of ability, compared to women, to make more rapid commitments to being caregivers to a sick partner and women’s better ability to assume the burdens of maintaining a home and family, the study authors said.”

But if men aren’t as able as women to “assume the burdens of maintaining a home and family,” how can we expect them to be equal partners (unless we say, fine, you don’t have to do the cooking and cleaning and child-care, but you damn well better be bringing home the big paycheck so I can stay home and do it. We all know how men judge women for that)?

And if they have a harder time making “rapid commitments to being caregivers to a sick partner,” shouldn’t we, as parents, be teaching them how (or, make them stay at home and be the main caregiver to the kiddies)?

  • Is there a special place in hell for people who cheat on or dump their “loved” one when he/she’s down and out?
  • Not to focus on the gender thing, but should we try to make men more like women (OK, maybe just when it comes to caregiving)?

Bring on the comments

  1. Honey
    Twitter: honeyandlance

    My mom died of a long-term illness similar to MS when she was 46. She had been sick for about 16 years, seriously ill for the past 10, and effectively quadriplegic for the last 4 of her life.

    We didn’t have health insurance or live near any relatives, so my dad, sister and I took care of her ourselves. As she got sicker, my dad had to do more and more – my sister and I weren’t strong enough to bathe her, for example. He was a real estate agent at the time and ended up losing his license because he took so much time taking care of her, he got distracted and didn’t take his continuing education classes. By the time this was discovered (6 months or so after her death) he’d been practicing without a valid license for some time.

    I have a 50% chance of having the same thing that my mom had, and it’s always made me really scared because I don’t think that most guys would be as devoted as my dad was to my mom. Jake says that he’ll always take care of me, but anytime I get sick for any length of time he always ends up being really nasty to me. I worry about it, sometimes.

  2. KC says:

    First, congratulations on your move Kat! Nothing like introducing your “new” readers to a Shaved pussy post to get things started!! LOL

    I can relate to what Honey posted, I’ve been taking care of a sick mother for the last 4 years. I lost my business in another town because I’m the only son and my sisters don’t live near by so I had to spend most of my time being able to drive down from the mountains in order to care for my ailing mother… really makes it tough to maintain a romantic relationship when you make plans but than have to change them when problems come up… It seems men get the “bad egg” award for always being the ones that “bale” but I have to say, I know a lot of men that stand by there ailing partner or parent when the other “female” siblings are too busy to care… or the wife runs for the hills when there is a financial “Bump in the road”…
    You get out of life what you put into it. I choose to make an effort to have others in my life without FORGETTING the people that are already in my life!
    If I had been in a bad car accident and was left as a vegetable, my parents would have been there for me in a minute! Only in America do we send our most honored people off to be taken care of by people that make the least amount of money and basically couldn’t care less about them… Sad world we live in…..

  3. VJ says:

    Yep, the stats here really don’t include many of the other conditions that lead to early disability or the need for constant care giving & close supervision. I know several guys who do this too. And it’s really not that uncommon. But the stats for the disabled & marriage are fairly miserable all around, and gender plays a small role here. Really not to be confused with philandering. To many folks it’s pretty simple ‘Jenny tried to help Bob, but she could no longer cope, so they divorced’. That’s presented as ‘perfectly acceptable’ in many circles, while adultery & chasing women/men is frowned upon.

    So really 2 separate topics here. And really? Both sexes are clearly implicated in both. I think the full stats will show a close approximation of incidents for both in any account. But the disability issues? Nothing to laugh at, and qualitatively way different than infidelity. And perhaps more regularly damaging as it’ll clearly affect proportionally more people (~70%+ vs the standard 50% for ‘normal marriages’ etc).

    So yeah, a different sort of sick & suck too! Cheers, ‘VJ’

  4. Kat Wilder says:

    Honey — I’m sorry that your mom died so young, and so painfully. I love the fact that your family did whatever it took (and more) to care for her. Now, as for Jake, I’d remind him of the “for better or worse” part when you guys finally say your “I dos.”

    KC — Yeah, pussy talk always reels ’em in …
    You’ve been good to your mom (as she, most likely was to you), and that is beautiful. I don’t like it when wither gender gets stereotyped. Each person has to be evaluated on his/her moral compass.

    VJ — I did kind of lump them in together, illness and adultery. Not too fair. It’s very easy to skip out on someone when things go a little “south” — I’ve done it, we’ve all done it. But it’s “acceptable” if someone can’t “cope”? Those people need a reality check on what getting older is all about, cause we’re all going there (and Botox etc. can’t change that).

  5. VJ says:

    I was thinking about this a bit more the other day. I know several couples like this. For more than a few the accident/incident/disease/disability struck soon after the wedding or was a pre-existing condition. One brave young bloke I know just married his long time GF in my town is a tall good looking government worker, fairly accomplished & independent, and he not only takes care of his now wife’s ailing granny, but his fairly sick wife too. Cooks cleans, & rehabs around the house too. All at mid-late 20 something. Without batting an eyelash. And he’s been doing it for years too. I know several now middle aged & older couples where one spouse was stricken literally days or months after the wedding. many having only a year or so of ‘normal life’ before the real struggles began. Most can’t adequately cope, but they somehow manage for love. And year after year, they’re still there doing the tasks that need to be done and demonstrating in mind & act their devotion towards their spouse or loved one. It’s often a tremendous sacrifice, and can be very draining as well. And it’s just not exclusively a woman’s lot either! Cheers, ‘VJ’