You are a good person. You in all of your skin, just the way you are proves to be enough for anyone- if not more. Or at least, you certainly consider yourself to be. And lo and behold, you have met someone that realizes the same about you. Then, one brisk and windy day –while viewing downtown Chicago with your love- you rush into the coffee shop where your lust is employed, and just like that all of those thoughts you have of being a good person begins to crumble.
Instantly you try to rationalize, that sure, every now and then you fall into an act of distrust and become some ungodly, somewhat ungrateful, human being. Or so society would have you believe. In fact, not just society, you also feel this way about yourself until the need for comfort from your lusts’ arms arises. But you keep it cool.
You –ahead of your white collar, executive-class companion- walk up to the sticky counter and try to quickly order a tall venti-latte or some other sugary treat when suddenly you are side-swept by your current love, who has decided he/she wants something off of the menu and sees no issue in placing the order request. The words sting as they tumble out of your mate’s mouth into your lover’s ears, and suddenly all you can hope is that the person you have been so disgustingly unkempt with is incredibly professional.
Once seated you can feel a piercing gaze burning a hole into the back of your head, but you remain thankful that you are dabbling with someone who is humbly sane, and in a weird juxtaposition, dealing with someone that likely will be bummed out by the slightest crack in the sidewalk. Later, you know there will be raunchy dreams thanks to the mere risk/sexiness of the situation, but otherwise you have no intentions of letting on.
Or should you?
If you have any desire in your body to become a better person (in society’s eyes), drop the past and be considered in the ranks of successful unions such as Barack and Michelle Obama, or artists Beyonce and Jay-Z, stick with the person you know loves you and is willing to give you the love and respect you deserve. Even when the relationship requires you to roll up your sleeves and fight when you would rather just throw in the towel.
With steadily changing data revealing that divorce rates are creeping higher, and infidelity websites like Ashley Madison boasting astounding numbers of 8.5 million members, it is understandable that so many may feel the urge to dabble instead of deal with whatever crappy situation that is going on at home. Especially in the African American community our sustainable relationships rates are so much more in jeopardy because of social and economic influences that the relief of cheating seems to overshadow the work of staying committed.
It is difficult learning another person -their desires, their dislikes and pleasures, what makes them laugh, and how to hold them when they cry, etc.- but you have to decide if it is worth it to you. It comes with the territory of becoming a responsible adult. This does not mean that you will not have some serious questions to ask yourself (i.e. How long must I put my desires on the back-burner?) However, it does mean that you will have a reason to think in terms of being a plural instead of as a singular. Figuring out the sacrifice of dabbling versus the responsibility of dealing with relationship hurdles seems to be America's (and plenty of other countries) hitch when it comes to relationships. But once we are not thinking of ourselves and stop to think of those we may hurt, lose, or encounter while going about our everyday lives then we slowly begin to unhitch the norm.