This is a story from my past that I’m not proud of. My then girlfriend, we’ll call her Cee, and I had been together for about 4 years in 2009. We had lived together for 3 years but had no plans to get married. Cee is the most loving and caring person I’ve ever met in my life. She isn’t the life of the party but she possesses the highest moral character of anyone I’ve ever met. This makes her the most beautiful person in the world to me. But like I said she isn’t the crazy party girl and I wasn’t sure what kind of woman I was looking for.
Things weren’t going well for Cee and I because I started hanging out with the wrong type of people. I was drinking all the time and I began to strike up a friendship with a young girl I worked with. We will call the new girl Vee. Vee was the life of the party, wild and beautiful. But this was balanced with the fact that she was immature and crazy.
I started going out to have a few drinks with Vee. We would smoke cigarettes and flirt with one another. But the moment it escalated was when we went to the movies together. It was an afternoon movie, I can’t remember the name, and there was nobody in the theatre but us. We had a moment where our knees brushed against each other. From this time on we engaged in that teenage cat and mouse game of touching each other by accident. The tension was so high at the end of the movie that we just starred at each other but didn’t do anything. I remember we smoked a cigarette afterwards and felt like we had just had sex—we were that attracted to each other.
Vee and I continued this charade for a few days and tried to act like we didn’t have feelings for each other. I’m not proud of this, but during this time, we did fool around quite a bit. Cheaters sex is like the crack cocaine of making love. It feels fantastic while you’re doing it, but once the rush wears off you are lower than you’ve ever been and require more and more of it to keep the high going. It’s an unsustainable thing that will consume you if you let it. Cee started to figure out what was going on with my all my deleted text messages and call records. It really sucks writing this because I’m not proud of these moments in my life.
It finally came to the point where I was going to leave the faithful Cee for the wild Vee. Cee came home from her job one evening and we started talking. I’m terrible at breakups so I kept beating around the bush. She finally asked, “Do you want to break up with me? If you aren’t happy just tell me but you can’t keep putting me through this.” She was crying and I felt fucking awful with myself. Cee had taken me from dark places—depression, alcoholism, family issues—and always stuck by me. She saw me for the man I could become; not for the man I was. In the back of my mind I knew something was wrong with the decision I was making. I was choosing the party girl who would be fun for a little while but who I would eventually break up with. I had relationships like this before and I knew I was making the same mistake if I broke up with Cee. My love for Cee is best captured in this Bruce Lee quote:
“Love is like a friendship caught on fire. In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals, deep-burning and unquenchable.”
Cee and I had always been best friends and the best relationship advice I ever got from my Uncle—who was married for 45 years—was, “Marry your best friend. The sex and looks will eventually go away, but your friendship will last a lifetime.”
Even with all this knowledge I wanted to be with Vee so bad that I broke up with Cee. She left the house crying and went to stay in a hotel that night. I called Vee and she was super excited at this development. We made plans to spend the night together and finally consummate our relationship. She wasn’t getting off work till midnight so I decided to go to the gym.
But while I was there I heard the Dan Auerbach song, Whispered Words come through my headphones (listen to this song, it’s great); this song changed my life. You have to listen to this song if you never have. There was something about it that drove me into a frenzy. I kept listening to it on repeat again, again, and again as I ran on the treadmill. I knew the decision I was making was wrong. I realized in the words of GOB from Arrested Development, “I think I made a huge mistake.”
I rushed out of the gym to Jared’s jewelry store. I walked in there reeking of stink and sweat and told the lady at the counter what had happened. After telling me, “I was an idiot” she helped me pick out a beautiful diamond ring for Cee. I told Vee everything I was feeling and she surprisingly told me to be with Cee if that’s what I wanted.
I called Cee and found out the hotel where she was staying. I arrived at her room, knocked on the door, and when she opened it I was on one knee with the ring in my hand. I wept as I told her, “I’m such a fucking idiot. Please forgive me this one last time. Marry me.”
I remember her saying, “Are you kidding me? Are you kidding me? Please tell me you’re serious. I can’t take this if you aren’t serious.” And I was. We both cried and I profusely apologized for all the terrible things I’d done throughout our relationship.
We’ve now been happily married for four years with no infidelity issues on my part. And I know every day that I made the right decision.