A Sucker Punch from Right out of Wrong Field

We've all had them.

Those gut-wrenching sucker punches life sends us from out of nowhere. It's weird. You can be going about a normal day and then someone tells you something or perhaps you find something that sends your brain in a tailspin.

I got one of those recently. A doubling sucker punch from right out of wrong field. With it, comes an internal struggle. It's something I've discussed among friends and even romantic partners. This sucker punch made me once again ponder: When is it cheating?

Here's the scenario.

About two years ago, I met a man through somewhat happenstance. Immediately that good ole' Grasshopper Likey What She Sees vibe reared its totally not lovely head. I did the check: no wedding ring, no bruises from wife training, no shell-shocked look from a man whose soul only came to life on the golf course or playing poker. We ended up exchanging numbers. I was pretty hopping happy. I'll admit it.

I'm making a long story short here. Which is surprising since we women generally gravitate toward our abilities to make a short story long.

In any case, after several months of  daily talking and continuous failed attempts (on both of our sides) to schedule a date, the dude suddenly cut me short. One day, totally out of the blue, I receive a text saying that he'd "started dating someone and I wouldn't be hearing from him anymore."


Yes. Wow. Since just the night before we were talking of meeting the next day. The next day.

I scribbled it off to "WTF ever" and told the guy that I wished him the best and that she was a lucky girl. I even offered to be his friend one day down the line if it was ever in the cards. No hard feelings. I don't really have time to waste on developing and maintaining hard feelings -- I'm no martyr. It is most entirely in self convenience. Plus, in this case, my intuition had been sparking for about two months that something amiss was afloat. Of course, in true Me Fashion, I chalked it up to being overly suspicious for no good reason.

In the time since, the guy has seldom, if ever, crossed my mind other than to wonder how he was faring. Until this one day. This one day when I happen to see a friend from college in a store. We start talking and she mentions a very specific organization. Then I mention that I know someone involved in that very organization. And, yes, you got it. Screw seven degrees of Kevin Bacon. Seven feet of Grasshopper spit encompasses more people.

She knew him. Or, of him.

Enough to know that he has a baby. A baby born right about the same time that the two of us were spending every day chatting for hours. And, it would be my guess, right about the same time that he was not changing diapers or preparing formula nearly as much as he should have been.

I didn't ask whether or not he was married. It's funny she never specifically mentioned "wife" just "baby." No, I didn't ask. Asking another woman, "Oh, is he married?" after admitting you know him is akin to screaming "I wanted to rip his jeans off." In my old-fashioned mind, baby = wife, but that would merely be an assumption based on the short conversation.

This gal ain't getting involved in that crap. Although the tongue twisted, "he's a nice guy" as my mind swirled deliriously from the lack of oxygen from that innocently delivered but painfully debilitating sucker punch from the wrong field may have given me away. I'm not so good at the lying thing. And, I'm pretty damn sure that I'm not good at the mistress thing. I don't have proof. I don't have any references but it's a gut feeling that I'd really suck at it.

However, it raises the question...

When is it cheating?

I know that this involves all manners of religious morality, social morality and a little common sense.

I think most all of us can agree that if a man puts his pee in a woman's hoo hoo -- it's cheating.

But, what about the ambiguous area? The mental and emotional aspects of cheating. If you've frolicked with some serious mental foreplay (with the other person), is that cheating? If you've only frolicked in your head with the person in some mental foreplay, is that cheating? Is texting another man/woman with intimate intentions cheating? Is calling another man/woman with intimate intentions cheating?

If you share your deep innermost thoughts, dreams and soul through emotional intimacy, is that cheating?

Those thoughts are churning in my mind tonight. Because I know where I stand on those issues. And, where I stand at the moment is neck deep in a pile of feces.

I shouldn't be surprised. Just a few weeks after said guy and I stopped talking I got a strange phone call. It was from a blocked number. I'll never forget the woman's voice or her breathless "oh my gosh" that she whispered after my voice mail finished playing. I still have the message. It haunted me that day. It haunts me even more now.

I instantly suspected something was up with him and that this woman was tied to him somehow. I guess now I know. I also instantly knew, that the use of "oh my gosh" was a sure fire indicator that this poor woman had never caught him before.

If you're married or in a relationship, this is what dating is really like today. These men -- like this one -- lurk around every corner. It doesn't compare with the audacity of the hunter who offered to fill my freezer with all the deer meat we could eat in exchange for some hanky panky behind his wife's back.

But it's close.


  1. Ahh..Glasshoppea....you touch on a very important point, I believe.
    Cheating comes in many forms, and isn't, necessarily, manifested in a physical way, only.
    Let's look at the situation.
    He's [they] have had a baby.
    And, during the pregnancy, he was entertaining you. You also say that you hadn't had the time to date, or consummate! Fortunately, for you!
    And, having babies, doesn't require marriage, nor do relationships.
    In my opinion, his wife was pregnant, and he "cheated" on her, by engaging with you; harmless, or not, the situation elevated to one of depth.
    But, were you cheated on, I think is the more important question here, in context of you.
    One thing we know, you're desirable!

  2. Ahhh... You mean cheated on in this situation? I haven't even considered that point-of-view. My immediate thought is that I wasn't at all, however, I was very specifically lied to because I did ask if he was married -- that is if she was his wife. You're right. In this day, one may or may not be married to the parent of their newborn children.

    The bigger question is why do I suddenly feel like a Harlot? I'm going by Hobby Lobby tomorrow to buy me a stencil and some scarlet fabric. I feel this way without ever even touching the man. I am, indeed, lucky that we never "dated." I wonder how men and women live with themselves when they knowingly indulge in an extramarital affair?

    And, thank you for the compliment although I am quickly turning into a snow leopard, I'm afraid. :)

  3. Him -- n ot you grasshopper

  4. What a jerk (him)! You have no reason to feel like a harlot, you were an innocent party unless you possess an all knowing crystal ball and in which case this would have not happened to begin with!

  5. Thanks Melissa. I'll be shameless for a moment: Y'all should check out her blog -- http://melissaozimek.blogspot.com/

    I still feel like a loser. It'll pass.

    I need to go back to school and take Judging Character 101.

  6. The degree of what you describe is cheating. But under no circumstances put on that scarlet letter--people will think you are a Univ of Alabama football fan.


  7. This is one of my favorites so far. Perhaps your picker is busted. The pretty ones always have someone else. For that matter, so do most of the rest. Investigate...

    Speaking of investigation, I apologize again for having to post anonymously. My sense of humor still begs for you to guess who I am. I'll give you a hint or two.

    We are friends on FB. I have also met your young'uns. (Good kids by the way. I am not often impressed.)

    I'm still contemplating returning to blogging. Coming back to read yours helps to inspire me to do so. I know you probably never knew I read your blog, but I catch up every so often. You are a truly talented story teller. I anxiously await you authoring a book.

    Keep living the real life and keep entertaining others with your perspective. You rock!

    1. First, it only took a few minutes based on the excellent clues you gave. However, it would have taken at least a minute less had you elaborated on how much you love bacon!

      Second, I'm so immensely flattered. You were (are) a much more proficient and successful blogger than I. Had no idea that you read my stuff. And, you think my kids are kinda okay. Swoon!

      The book is in the works. I haven't forgotten what an excellent writer you are. If you'd like to proof before publishing, please let me know. It would be an honor!

      My picker is quite busted. Can't recall the last time the damn thing worked right. Let the right ones go. Let the wrong ones hang around. It's just hopeless.

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