I hated her when I discovered my husband had a girlfriend – a slip of a thing closer in age to our daughter than to him. I used to plot murder and other dark deeds, but in the end my therapist persuaded me that living a good life would be my best revenge. So I went against my divorce lawyer’s advice and left the matrimonial home – it probably cost me financially but I achieved a peace of mind I had lost when the trollop crept into our lives. It’s taken fifteen years for things to come full circle.
A few days ago, I became “the other woman” to the long term girlfriend of one of my lovers. I think Douglas rather enjoys the thrill of sneaking around. When I first met him he said that he was single and then after a few more dates it transpired that his love life was rather more complicated – he had been married for about fifteen years, his wife the only person he had ever had sex with and then the marriage, which was mainly an intellectual meeting of minds, less one of physical pleasure, unravelled when she began an affair with someone at work, a man who was able to give her the attention she needed. He had left and begun dating and sleeping with every woman he met online, making up for all the lost years not sowing wild oats until eventually he was seeing a woman he’d met when on a business trip. What started as a casual affair became a regular long term liaison, meeting when she was in London or he in her city. He had tried to hint that he was still dating others but it had pained her to hear it and so he became complicit in her fantasy that they were in an exclusive relationship.
The other night when D came round he revealed that this girlfriend was now putting pressure on him to divorce his wife and marry her, either for him to move to be with her or she was quite willing to move down to London.
He went up to Cambridge to visit her one weekend and mid-visit sent me a text to say that the situation was now quite desperate, with her not being able to bear letting him return to London unless he promised to divorce his wife. We were supposed to have met up for a date that evening, but in the circumstances he was unable to without worrying that she might hurt herself. I murmured my sympathies, assured him that he was doing the right thing staying in Cambridge and then thought nothing more of it.
In fact, I had been a little relieved at not having to entertain Douglas. When we had arranged to see each other the last few times I had found him getting more extreme in his demands. Early on when we first met I had been full of adventurous zeal so that when he asked me I’d told him that I was up for trying anything at least once and believed I could be quite filthy. The sex became kinkier and kinkier until recently I was beginning to dread rather than look forward to his visits. I was going to tell him that I was at my limit of what I was willing to try and it did make me consider that question I’d been avoiding all the while – what did I really want?
Later that day, he rang to apologise again.
So sorry. I can only speak for a bit as her sister has come over and I popped out to get some milk and tea things.
I felt like a real bit on the side then and it amused me because this was so far from the reality of the situation. I had only been dating Douglas this spring and although I found him attractive, kind and intelligent, I was under no illusion that this was only a fling for him – his domestic situation was such a car crash of unresolved drama I could not even imagine being part of his world. The sex had been fun though occasionally dark, and I could just as easily do without it.
He texted me again at teatime. No doubt he had managed to sneak out under some other pretext.
Hope you managed to find a replacement and won’t be too lonely tonight?
It so happened that Liam was back from his break in Portugal with the lads and eager to meet up for some female company. I assured Douglas that I wasn’t short of male company but even if I’d been alone I would have coped. Some imp made me text him an invitation to join us for a threesome. I was certain though that this would not have happened.
When Liam came round we spent a good hour and a half simply catching up on news, finishing a bottle of tempranillo he’d brought back from his holiday. My heart wasn’t really into having him stay the night however, and pleading family engagements that I couldn’t avoid the following morning, he took my hint and left around two in the morning. We had a comfortable relationship, Liam and I; he was the one I’d been seeing since last November/December and we were fairly honest with each other. We made a date to meet up again mid week before he left and I wondered how Douglas was getting on with his girlfriend.
It wasn’t the way I’d like to conduct a relationship, sneaking around and being the reason for anyone’s unsettled feelings – having been there before, the one with the trust issues, I knew that it wasn’t entirely the fault of the other woman. In all my liaisons I can honestly say that I had not actually sought out any of these men. It was true that some of them I’d got quite fond of, D being one of these despite his kinky nature. Now with the realisation that he wasn’t so constant in his dealings, my brain cautioned my heart to be wary. Still, I couldn’t help feeling a little disappointed at how the relationship had turned out. What was I hoping to find?