There are many things I never thought I’d do in my life.
When I was very young I was convinced that I was going to be a female Peter Pan and never grow up. I was a tom-boy as a child so I was also convinced that I was never going to wear skirts/dresses (because they really are a far less practical way to dress than wearing jeans). But by the time I was 16, and going to my first School Formal I was wearing a Formal dress just like all the other girls.
Adolescence is the time that all of us realize that our unfounded dream of never growing up is an impossibility, and adulthood is a inevitability. As I lost control of my prepubescent body and I had to learn about things like wearing a bra and using tampons, I started to form an idea of what type of adult I was going to become. This idea manly consisted of a long list of things I was never going to do. I was never going to get drunk, well that happened. I was never going to have a one-night stand, that also happened. I was never going to try an explicit substances, done that one too.* I wouldn’t mind going back and telling my teenaged self that these things are ok and I should loosen up a bit. However, there was one thing I was certain that I’d never do in my life. Something that I don’t want to go back and admit to my teenaged self that I have done. CHEAT. Unfortunately I have to admit to myself that yes I have cheated. Not only that I have cheated more than once.
I started dating my first boyfriend on an off at the age of 18 (yes I was a late bloomer romantically), and we stayed together till the age of 22. It was never a very healthy relationship, and it ended when I was traveling overseas without him. I hadn’t heard from him almost a month following a fight, I was drunk, and I hooked up with another man. I couldn’t bring myself to having sex, but the kissing was cheating enough. When we finally spoke I didn’t admit to cheating, but we discussed the fact that our relationship was more or less over. I few days after this I got drunk again, this time I slept with another man I’d known only a few days. After this I admitted to my boyfriend that I’d cheated on him while drunk. I had expected him to become angry or upset; we’d already decided our relationship was dying, but still I had CHEATED! Instead he told me very quietly, “I cheated too”.
I’d always dismissed my cheating as being understandable; I was drunk, my boyfriend was not talking to me, and our rocky and unhealthy four year relationship had left me craving for any attention I could get. What I didn’t realise was that drunken one night stand cheating, was gateway cheating.
The Ex stayed with the girl he cheated on me with (a girl who worked at McDonald’s and has the worst teeth I’ve seen in my life). This made me feel pretty terrible, so I made the unwise choice to start a long-distance relationship with the first man I hooked up with drunkenly. I convinced myself I was in love with him, it was easier than admitting the Ex had replaced me and I was alone. However that’s when I met the Flying Englishman, and in another night of drunk escapades I was all over the Flying Englishman. The next day I called it off with the long distance guy. I didn’t cheat on the Flying Englishman, how that ended is another story.
So more recently I found myself dating the Teacher, who I can only describe as being a sweet kid. He’s a couple of years younger than me, but after we meet we become best friends, and naturally more. I’d only been dating him two months when I went to a conference in the Philippines, this is where I met the Freedom Fighter (he’s a political activist and youth motivational speaker if you need to understand the nickname). He was exciting and fun, and I liked him. Before I realized what I was doing I had cheated on the teacher during a week long romance with the Freedom Fighter.
I hadn’t thought about what would happen next. I guess I thought the freedom fighter and myself would go our own ways, and we wouldn’t see each other again. However, it turns out that wasn’t the case. The freedom fighter flew across countries to see me again. My relationship with the Freedom fighter should be a whirlwind international romance. The problem is, I never really ended things with the Teacher.
I told the teacher what had happened. He was upset, and he called me a number of nasty things including selfish. Which was fair enough, I did cheat on the guy. However, he for some reason also wants to continue some sort of relationship with me.
So now I’ve found myself torn between two men. I’m perfectly aware that what I’m doing is wrong, and selfish. But I have genuine feelings for both of them, so I don’t know how to end it with either of them (yes I know most of you are going to say if you had genuine feelings for either of them I wouldn’t be in this situation)**.
If I could go back and tell teenaged- Lillian what I was doing, she’d never have believed it. I never thought I’d be a cheater. However, here I am. This is the story of how a girl who wanted to be a female Peter Pan become a two-timing bitch.
*I suppose you are starting to form the opinion that I was an extremely boring and prudent teenager. You would not be wrong. However, I’ve really surprised myself over the past few years (I’d probably get the prize for most changed at a high school reunion. I consider this to be a good thing).
** After I broke up with the Ex, he went through a period of trying to get back into me every time we met. I asked him how he could do that when he had a new girlfriend. He said he knew it was bad and selfish, but he still had feelings for me but his feelings for the new girl were over-lapping. When he saw either of us, he couldn’t help but want us. I told him at the time he was a jerk, but I now understand what he was on about.