Entitlement, Thy Name is Cheater

I saw this meme and I thought to myself, “I have no words.” Then I thought about it and decided I did have words. Unfortunately, I have been so bad about writing that I never got around to it. Before I could point out the absurdity of such an asinine statement I was slapped in the face with this drivel:

Folks, this gets to the very heart of what Chump Lady always says about cheating. She maintains it’s about entitlement and crappy character. What better example of that entitlement is there than these two memes?

Don’t lose a loyal man because he’s occasionally unfaithful? As they would say in “The Princess Bride”: I do not think that word means what you think it means. A loyal man is not unfaithful. Feel free to interchange the pronouns as necessary. That’s like saying, “Don’t give up on your law abiding husband because he occasionally murders someone.” “Don’t give up on your honest investment banker because he occasionally embezzles.” “Don’t fire your favorite teacher just because she occasionally sleeps with her students.” I guess if you only do something occasionally it’s okay.

You say he hits you? Does he do it regularly? No? Only occasionally? Oh yeah, then you don’t want to lose a good man like him because he occasionally hits you.

He occasionally molests your kids? Well, it’s not like he does it all the time. You don’t want to lose a good man over something that only happens occasionally.

I could do this all day. She only tried to poison you once! What’s your problem? She occasionally shoots up in front of your kids. It’s not like she’s a junkie. He occasionally lies to you. Where’s the red flag in that?

As you might be able to conclude I think the idea that you would want to hang onto this gem because he’s only occasionally unfaithful is a load of crap. Being occasionally unfaithful is a lot like being a little bit pregnant. You either are or you aren’t.

It’s also an entitled attitude. He’s so fucking phenomenal that it doesn’t matter what kind of shitty behavior he engages in. You don’t want to lose him, do you? Just look past him sticking his dick in other people. It’s no biggie. You don’t want to lose a loyal man like him because of the occasional cheating. Where on earth would you find someone better?

Then we move onto this brilliant advice, otherwise known as, “How to eat shit sandwiches and keep a smile on your face.”

Cheating is apart (sic) of ups & downs of a relationship tho. Every man is gonna hurt u, u just gotta find that one worth hurting for. Millions of happy wives have been cheated on & absurd but they fought for their marriage to work. If you not willing to fight for love then stay single.

Oh Professor Douche, there is so much wrong with this. We’ll begin with the obvious. No, cheating is not a part of the ups and downs of a relationship. Cheating is, or should be, a deal breaker. It should not be normalized. If cheating is a normal part of the ups and downs in a relationship then you are in a very toxic relationship. My advice is to get the hell out!

Secondly, pain and sorrow is not a normal part of a relationship. You should not expect to be hurt. You should expect to be loved and treasured. Supported, cherished. Not writhing around in agony because the person you’re with is an asshole and you think this is just the normal course of an average relationship. I don’t find any man worth hurting for. Whether you’re a man or a woman I would hope you wouldn’t find any man or woman worth hurting for. That’s not love. That’s abuse. Let’s stop selling these tortured relationships as love affairs of the century.

I find it astounding that he actually believes “millions of happy wives have been cheated on & abused but they fought for their marriage to work.” Those women are not happy. They’re desperate. And where are all the men fighting for their marriages to work despite wives that are out there sleeping with everyone? I guess being hurt and being cheated on and being abused isn’t part of a man’s normal relationship. At least not as a recipient.

I do have to give him props thought. He dared to take the conversation where others normally don’t. He’s actually suggesting that if a man only hits you occasionally you should continue to fight for your marriage. Sounds amazing. Yeah, he gets drunk and beats me but it only happens a few times a month. He cheats on me, slept with my sister, gave me an STD, but that’s just part of the ups and downs of a relationship, you know. I stuck it out. I fought for my marriage and my lying, cheating sack of shit abuser. I am so lucky! I know how to stick with it unlike you losers out there. You give up too easily and that’s why you don’t have a lasting relationship. Unlike me.

This is the crap the RIC peddles. Fight for your man. Fight for your marriage. Who cares about your dignity? Keep him at all costs. It’s far better to have a man, even if he’s a shitty excuse for a human being, than to be alone.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. The idea that love means never having to say you’re sorry is bullshit and so is this idea that you need to fight for love. Love is freely given. It is reciprocated. Relationships may not be all sunshine and roses all the time but you shouldn’t have to be fighting for your relationship either. Nor should you have to navigate through hell for a relationship. That’s not a relationship worth nurturing.

Oh, and third? This idea that if you’re not willing to fight for love then you should stay single is another way of getting you to continue with the pick me dance.

If you not willing to fight for love then stay single.

No, bro, how ‘bout if you want me to continue to be in your life you get your shit together from the very beginning? He’s making a declaration, folks. If you can’t fight for your man then you should stay single. If you’re not willing to overlook his cheating and his lying and the abuse he foists upon you then don’t even bother trying to find someone. It’s much better that you remain single. Any of you people out there that believe you deserve to be treated with decency and respect need to readjust your expectations. You should willingly accept the crumbs someone tosses your way. Who do you think you are anyway? You don’t get to make demands. You don’t get to make a choice.

All snark aside these two memes are shining examples of what I talk about and what Chump Lady talks about when we keep shouting from the rooftops that cheating is not a marriage problem; it is an entitlement problem. That’s what all of this is about. It’s what the RIC is built on. They truly believe they are entitled to forgiveness. It’s a given. Any real woman would do the right thing and fight for her man, her relationship. Of course she would forgive him, take him back, and never speak of it again.They believe they get to call all of the shots. They get to decide to cheat on you. Then they get to decide if they want to stay with to you or if they’re going to leave. They are entitled to do whatever they feel like and you need to sit there and take it like a good little woman. Sadly, many of us have been indoctrinated to believe this bullshit. To believe that cheating is just a mistake. To believe you owe it to them to give them another chance. To believe that you don’t throw away years for one bad moment in your relationship. We’re taught to forgive and told that relationships take two people. We’re told to look at ourselves and ask ourselves what we did wrong, how we made them cheat, what we did to drive them into someone else’s arms.

That. Is. Bullshit. Cheating is not a relationship problem. It is an entitlement problem. They feel entitled to cheat and they feel entitled to your forgiveness.

Am I going to find that one man that is worth hurting for? No, Professor Douche, I’m going to find the man who doesn’t believe that cheating and abuse are normal parts of a relationship. 

Am I willing to fight for love? I don’t know. What’s the prize money like? Come on! I’m way too old to fight for love. It’s either there or it’s not. All of this “fight for your relationship” bullshit is just pick me bait.  I’m not fighting to keep a relationship with a lying, cheating, entitled asshole. That’s a solid “No.”

Am I going to lose a loyal man just because he’s occasionally unfaithful? Oh honey, I’m not losing anything. I’m kicking that sonofabitch to the curb! He’s the one that lost something.

#riseup

In Sickness and In Health

I was reading that other board that I’ve read for the last ten years or so. Somehow the topic of taking care of your sick, cheating spouse came up. One of the women knew someone who had found out after her husband died that he had been cheating on her the entire time he was sick. She wished she had known because she wouldn’t have bothered to take care of him.

I think that’s a pretty understandable stance to take. And yet, there were others who said they would care for their spouse regardless.

Is it any wonder infidelity is glossed over the way it is? Here we have a man who is actively cheating on his wife while he goes through chemo. He’s sexting his AP and meeting up with her in between treatments when he’s well enough while his wife is left to do the hard work. The AP gets sex and promises, dinners and sexy texts, and a guy who gives her a case of the crotch tingles, and his wife gets to drive him to chemo appointments, wait for hours while he’s being treated, and clean up his vomit and diarrhea afterwards. And there are actually people out there who not only don’t see what the problem is but also try to frame it as though it is a character issue and anyone not willing to look pass the lies and humiliation obviously isn’t as good of a person as they are. It’s as though there is a moral failure with those of us who choose to cut toxic people out of our lives. Their mantra seems to be: When someone shows you who they are, bury your head in the sand and keep pretending they’re the person you want them to be.

One person said, “I would choose compassion, too. I think people often justify not having a compassionate response by pointing out how the person “should” have behaved.”

Hmmm…. interesting. Here’s a head scratcher for ya: Why isn’t the soul mate/twu wuv taking care of her schmoopie? I would think the compassionate response would be to let the AP take care of the sick person. You wouldn’t want that terminally ill Lothario to spend his last months with the horrid, asexual wife, would you? Isn’t it only fair that these two soul mates, destined to be together, aren’t kept apart for one. more. minute?

If the answer is because the AP only wants the fun parts of the relationship and none of the work I would say sometimes that’s what happens when you trade in your spouse for what’s behind Door #2. Sometimes you lay there in your own shit and vomit because your twu wuv doesn’t want to take care of you and you fired your former spouse from that job. Good news, though! Once you’re up and feeling better (and no longer making a mess… ewwww!) your soul mate will once again be available for fun times.

One of the ladies did remark at one point that if the situation were turned around the cheater would have no problem leaving his wife’s body in the middle of the street. She also recounted a story of how a friend’s grandmother nursed her husband back to health, and then when she got breast cancer he left her for another woman. To which someone else (also a very enlightened soul who wouldn’t let a little thing like infidelity steer her course) replied: For me it’s more of I won’t let another person’s actions dictate or change the person I am just by nature.

What bullshit. This is just more excuses, more blaming the betrayed spouse, expecting everything from the cheated on while expecting nothing from and giving everything to the cheating spouse. I will repeat: It is not a moral failure to cut toxic people out of your life. If your spouse cheats on you and you choose to walk away it’s not a horrible failing on your part. Cheaters are not entitled to forgiveness, or being taken care of when they’re sick and find out their fuck buddies are only available for the good times.

Again I ask is it any wonder that we betrayed spouses face the uphill battle we do? It’s our fault. If we had been thinner, smarter, blonder, tanner, had more muscles, nagged less, put out more, cooked vegan, baked cakes, etc. then we could have prevented our spouse from cheating on us. Now that we have accepted the fact that it’s our fault the cheating happened then it behooves us to continue to shove that shit sundae down our gullet and take whatever else humiliation the cheater has in store for us.

We’re mean if we don’t want to take care of a cheating spouse. It’s not fair that we expect their AP to do that job. We’re horrible people who judge and impose unfair consequences and hey, who died and made you God? You’ve no right to judge that person who has gutted you. If you weren’t such a bitter, hateful person you would gladly mop up all that puke and shit and let them bounce off with Pop Tart once they were feeling better. I’m so glad I’m a more enlightened person who would never let a person’s awful behavior dictate my own behavior. I will swallow mounds of shit in order to prove to everyone that I am a better person!

Again I say bullshit. There is absolutely nothing wrong with refusing to be treated like an appliance. There is nothing wrong with saying, “Your behavior is unacceptable and I will not stand by while you treat me this way.” There is nothing wrong with saying, “This is not acceptable and I will not tolerate it one second longer.” There is also absolutely nothing wrong with telling Romeo that if he wants to fuck Pop Tart when he’s feeling 100% then by golly you’re stepping aside and she can wipe his ass when he’s at his lowest.

This idea that we operate in a vacuum is ludicrous. If every time my fictitious friend Rosie comes up to me she spits in my face and bites my nose, I’m going to stop hanging around with her. And yes, by golly, her behavior does dictate my behavior. If Rosie weren’t a violent asshole who assaulted me I’m sure I would be wiling to spend time with her.

If every time my fictitious friend Cinnamon comes over she steals things from my house, I’m going to stop inviting her over. And yes, by golly, her behavior does dictate my behavior. If she weren’t stealing me blind every time I had her over for dinner I would continue to invite her over. But since she steals from me I’m severing this relationship and not giving her another opportunity to take shit that doesn’t belong to her.

If every time I hang out with my fictitious friend Hannah she lies right to my face I’m going to stop hanging out with her because it’s very difficult to have any kind of a friendship with a person who lies to you constantly. Again, you might have guessed it by now. Her behavior, her lying, does dictate my behavior- whether or not I’m willing to be friends with her.

So can we please stop acting like fucking a person suddenly gives them special permission to do whatever they want to you? I wouldn’t lobby the prison and ask to take care of my terminally ill rapist. I wouldn’t volunteer to take care of the person who killed my mom or child. I wouldn’t wipe the ass of my kidnapper or clean up the vomit of my mugger or give rides to the doctor’s to the guy who embezzled money from my company. Why would I offer to do that for the person who lied to me, cheated on me, humiliated me, and financially raped me?

This is the kind of crap we come up against in real life all the time. Once you leave the comfy confines of Chump Lady’s blog you usually run into all the people who don’t think infidelity is the real problem. They want to examine it from all different angles and assign percentages of blame (because the cheater didn’t cheat in a vacuum, of course). They want to encourage being friends with the cheater and doing things for them. In fact, there is no greater sign of maturity than claiming to be “best friends” with your cheater and socializing with them. The problems occur when the bitter, betrayed chump refuses to forgive, refuses to be besties, refuses to do photo ops, refuses to cooperate, refuses to maintain the cheater’s image. Yeah… I don’t think so.

There is something awful about this idea that even though we know if we were the ones who were sick this person would walk away without a second glance, would happily dance on our grave, would fuck someone else while we crawled to the toilet to vomit and then cleaned up after ourselves because no one was there to help us, that we are somehow morally lacking if we don’t rush to help this person. There is something horrible about this idea that even when someone is betraying us and humiliating us and using us we are supposed to say, “Let me help you. I want to take care of you. It is my duty.” There is something almost evil about this idea that people who wouldn’t consent to being mistreated in such a way are somehow lacking compassion and humanity. We are somehow less than those people who would fall all over themselves to help an abuser.

It brings to mind the story of the boy and the frozen snake. You know the story, right? A boy comes across a half frozen snake on the mountain top. The snake begs the boy to take pity on him, put him in his pocket and take him down to the base of the mountain. The boy says, “No! You are poisonous. You’ll bite me and I’ll die.” The snake assures him that he wouldn’t do that to the boy; if he would do this one favor for him he promises not to bite him. Please! He’ll die if the boy doesn’t take pity on him and help him out! So being a kind soul (one of those non-judging sorts) the boy takes pity on the snake and picks him up and puts him in his pocket. As he walks down the mountain the temperatures slowly rise and the snake slowly begins to thaw out. Not long before they get to the bottom the snake bites the boy, sending a shot of venom though his body, essentially killing him. “Why did you do that to me? I took pity on you! I carried you down the mountain as you asked. You promised you wouldn’t bite me!” To which the snake replies, “You knew what I was when you picked me up.”

#riseup