I feel bad for poor Sandra Bullock.
It’s bad enough that hubby Jesse James was busy engaging in extracurricular activities with Michelle “Bombshell” McGee while she was off filming her Oscar-winning performance in “The Blind Side” — and isn’t that a rather prescient title, given what’s happened? — but now everyone’s weighing in on whether Bullock should dump
him or try and patch up the marriage.
Sound familiar? Just ask Elin, Elizabeth, Nilda, Hilary, Uma, Halle, Robin … (and, yeah, probably a lot of men, too — like, Guy).
Every woman in an adulterous high-profile marriage or relationship has been held up as a model of what to do or not for the rest of us. But, since we don’t live celebrity lifestyles, it’s silly to pay attention to what they do or not when their man is busted.
It comes down to what each of us would do.
Is infidelity reason enough to break up
a marriage? Can a marriage survive an affair — or affairs, like in the case of Tiger Woods?
That’s a question I had to ask myself.
Honestly, in the beginning, right after I absorbed the devastation, the anger, humiliation and fear, I said — yes. I decided I was going to do everything I could to save my marriage and my family. The Kid was young, and I was still convinced I was in love with Rob. I read Peggy Vaughan, I read “Divorce Busting,” I went to couples’ therapy, and I followed a workbook of exercises that were supposed to lead me toward forgiveness.
But as we got deeper into therapy and I listened to what he was saying and how I was really feeling, I realized that no matter what I thought and wanted and no matter how hard I was willing to work, Rob was who he was, and on a fundamental level, there was something in him that was always going to have a hard time with honesty.
Did I want to live with that?
Would I be able to trust that?
And then I had to admit to myself, no, I didn’t and I couldn’t.
A lot of marriages break up after an affair, but not all of them. Some couples are able, like a phoenix, to rise up out of the flames and transform into something stronger and better.
It’s easy to make a blanket statement — “If he ever cheated on me, I’d kick his sorry ass out” — but we never really know what we’re going to do until we’re in the moment. Sometimes, what we thought would destroy us makes us a better person and a better partner. Sometimes, we find a compassion and forgiveness we didn’t know we had. And other times, our liberal, loving and accepting ways are put to the test (and we have to accept, yeah, I’m not quite as liberal, loving and accepting as I thought I was!)
Could I stay with someone who abused me? Absolutely not! Could I stay with an alcoholic? If he got sober and stayed sober. Could I stay with someone who cheated on me? Maybe, depending …
I couldn’t with Rob, but maybe I could with someone else. But, crap — I sure hope I never have to decide.
- Where do you draw the line in a relationship?
- Have you ever drawn a line and crossed it anyway?
- And, have you ever regretted dumping someone who messed up but was fundamentally a “good” guy or gal?
Photo by Warner Bros.