“Have you ever dated a married man before? I would be your boyfriend, only yours.” I sat stunned as my ex-boss said this to me at dinner last weekend.
He had flown in for a few days and we had met up because an old colleague had given him a gift to carry for me. I wondered if he understood the contradiction in the words ‘have you ever dated a married man.’
I firmly told him unavailable men were not my type and spent the rest of the evening making small talk and ignoring his suggestive remarks and flirtations. As the night ended, he said to me: “The gift Maria gave you is at my hotel. Come with me so you can get it.”
I was shocked at this ploy of his and at the fact that he thought I was so naive that I would fall for his scheme. I told him I needed to go home and he could leave the gift at his hotel reception desk and I would pick it up another day. He grudgingly agreed and then as we said goodbye, he leaned down and tried to gently kiss me. I shrugged him off.
Since then, I have felt very troubled. This was not the first wealthy, powerful, married man who had tried his luck with me and I assume this will not be the last. Friends have also had similar experiences, some have given in and gone on to be mistresses or as the cruder phrase goes ‘side dishes.’
These stories are almost the norm now. We hear about the married ‘sugar daddies’ having affairs with younger women and the loudest whispers in our society about our most famous men having extramarital affairs. It bothers me that this is accepted – that men are able to get away with such behaviours, their wives often accepting it or oblivious to it, and young women victim to their predatory ways or not seeing that they deserve better.
I have met women that are mistresses and their life is miserable as they become part- time wives, always second to the wife. I have had friends on campus with sugar daddies, enjoying the materialistic rewards that come with it but prone to sexually-transmitted diseases and mainly being used for sex.
I find this culture makes me question relationships and marriage and why fidelity is so difficult. I have interviewed men that have had affairs and they are the first to admit that it is not because their wives are lacking in anything. I have met wives whose husbands have had affairs or continue to do so, some even claim they are ok with this as long as he comes home to them. Yet in their eyes, I see a lack, some kind of pain.
Most of these men stand before God or a law and take certain vows, which they seem to be unable to keep to. And the more money and power they acquire, the more they seem to indulge in these behaviours. A friend once pointed out to me that we women are also to blame – as many of us give into their aances because of the financial comforts we obtain in return.
Whatever the reasons, I am tired of being at the receiving end of these indecent proposals. My old boss did call to apologise when he told me he was in love with me and would keep me happy as his mistress. I lost my temper and said some very harsh things to him. I know I have sent him back to his wife with a much bruised ego, but I am also sure that since our call, he must have propositioned another dozen women or so!
Source : The Observer