Not my proudest moment I assure you, but it happened nonetheless.
How did my affair start? I sometimes have a hard time remembering myself.
It’s been ten years since I first met Shawn. I had seen him around before but always kept my distance because I heard he was married. I didn’t want to be the other woman and become involved with that kind of drama.
We started hanging out, which led to major flirting, and major flirting led to eventual sex, and the sex led to falling in love.
He got legally divorced about a year after our affair started. We ended up getting married and having a baby.
He slowly became verbally and emotionally abusive to me and almost every moment I wasn’t with him, he was sure I was cheating on him. It got so bad that he would become jealous when I spent time with our son together and the child I had from a previous relationship.
One day we got a call from Shawn’s step-mom, asking us to pick up Shawn’s half-brother, Guy. His half-brother had broken up with his girlfriend at the time and was sleeping inside Shawn’s dad’s truck.
This would eventually be the very moment my life changed, though I didn’t realize it at the time. We picked up his half-brother, Guy, who at the time, had no job, no car, lost his kid, and had an abscessed tooth but was on probation so he couldn’t take anything for the pain — at least, not without going to jail.
All I had ever heard from Guy’s own family was that he was a twice-convicted felon who was used to sell drugs, was a drug addict who stole sh*t. I would later learn the truth about everything but as we picked him up, I worried for my kids and all the stuff in my house. I didn’t want someone like Guy around my children.
That first night he stayed the night, I stayed up and talked with Guy all night long. He had nowhere else to stay. It turned out we knew a lot of the same people when we were younger and hung out at the same places, but somehow never ran into each other. I was slowly warming up to Guy and saw a bit of a kindred spirit in him. I talked with Shawn and asked if Guy could just move in with us. He agreed.
It did not take long before Guy became a consistent presence into our household. He helped watch the kids, cooked dinner, did dishes, and just generally cleaned up around the house. I couldn’t have appreciated the help more.
By this time, my husband was of very little to no help at all. His evening routine involved coming home from work and playing video games. (And listen: I’m a die-hard gamer girl but there’s a time to play video games and a time to help your wife out with dinner or spend time with your kids.)
One evening, I was hospitalized overnight with pneumonia. When I was released the next day, Shawn said, “Let me know when dinner is ready.” Really?! Because I totally got over that pneumonia overnight. Episodes like this started to take a toll on our relationship.
As my husband and I grew further apart, Guy and I grew closer and closer. He had gotten a job delivering newspapers and I started riding with him so that if he ever had to miss work or wanted to take a night off, he wouldn’t have to pay someone else to deliver them; he could just pay me instead.
Things in the bedroom between my husband and I had also come to a screeching halt. Between taking care of kids, going to school full-time, and taking care of the plethora of people who he moved into my house, I was tired and sex was the last thing on my mind. If I ever was in the mood, he only focused on himself. Our sex took five minutes. Talk about disappointment.
I missed being pleased. I missed being focused on. I missed having orgasms. I started to ponder what it’d be like to be with someone else, to be a desired woman again. All I needed was a sexual fix. It would be harmless.
Finding someone to have a one-time fling with was a little tricky. The wrong person would ruin my marriage and bring my life to a halt. The right person would take care of business and keep my indiscretion on the down-low.
I had grown comfortable enough to talk about my sex life problems with Guy, seeing as he was my friend. After going through a few options and nixing them, Guy finally suggested himself. It made sense. He had nearly as much to lose as I did if anyone found out so there was very minimal risk.
We did not want a relationship. He just wanted to help me out.
Well, we found a time and a place and we did it. The sex was phenomenal and, well, it got the job done.
Things at home, however, were going nowhere. My husband was becoming more and more clingy, yet at the same time becoming even more unhelpful with the kids and the house. I tried to keep making our relationship work but without any help from my husband, I was at a loss.
I felt myself falling out of love with him. He was becoming less and less the man that I married and he damn sure wasn’t keeping up his end of the marriage/love bargain.
At the same time I was falling out of love with my husband, I was falling *in love* with Guy. Finally, I couldn’t take it anymore and I told my husband that I wanted a divorce and until then, I would be sleeping in my son’s room downstairs. After about two weeks, my husband moved out and it was just Guy, me and the kids.
After a messy divorce, heinous custody dispute over mine and Shawn’s son, and a restraining order, our divorce became final. Guy and I got married and a year later and we have a baby girl together.
It has been six years and I can honestly say that I have never been happier. Our relationship may be unconventional and we may not have gone about it the right way, but after being unhappy for so long, it feels good to finally be at peace in a happy marriage.
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Jessica is a writer at yourtango.