Who is she, the betrayed? It never really mattered to me before. It was never more than a passing moment of surprise, or I’m not surprised. It used to be I thought maybe they’d brought it on themselves, or were the cause of the wandering because they were too demanding. Too controlling. Too harsh. Too weak. Too (fill in the blank). Or maybe there were not loving. Not supportive. Not fun. Not sexually willing. Not (fill in the blank).
But it wasn’t me, or my kind.
It wasn’t women who were smart and engaged and read books and prayed and went to counseling and talked openly about relationship and were willing to try things in bed. Women who carried the load when other’s in the family couldn’t and always got the laundry done and made sure the family had matching clothes on Easter and Christmas Eve pajamas. Women who made time to talk to their husbands and cared how they looked and ran companies and volunteered with their husbands and invited people into their home for family Bible studies. Women who opened their home to long-term visitors from countries all over the world and invited elderly parents to move in and got comments from people over and over about how great their marriage was. Women who’d had the opportunity to consort with men during their marriage and yet would never have dreamed of doing so. Women who believed that love was not just a feeling, but a choice and a decision and were committed to it for the long haul.
No, it wasn’t me, or my kind.
I remember reading stories online or hearing a snippet on tv about women whose husbands had been found to be living double lives and thinking – how dumb is SHE? How could that EVER HAPPEN…she must have ignored the signs. Because it couldn’t be me, or my kind. We would know, we would have seen, we would not have stood for that.
But it was me. I am the face of betrayal.
I look around at the faces of the women of betrayal that this scourge has opened my eyes to. I see lovely young faces. Old, wrinkled faces. I see dark skin and light skin and mulatto skin. I see women from all nations and all faiths. I see bone thin women and large women. I see stay-at-home-moms and working moms and business owners and non-profit leaders. I see women in the lines of local and state agencies, and women serving those women. I see me, and I am so incredibly humbled.
The faces of betrayal. They are all of us. And they are beautiful, oh so beautiful.