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Simply Solo Spotlight: Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

May 24, 2011

Today’s Simply Solo Spotlight is written by Nancy, who first wrote me last month when I blogged about the crazy stuff we do during breakups. In her email to me, Nancy told me that in a recent relationship, she found herself doing some crazy (but clever) stuff to catch her boyfriend in a lie. After reading her email, I told her I didn’t think she was crazy at all and asked her to share her story on the blog. Of her submission to Simply Solo, Nancy said, “I didn’t know what to make of my story or how to address it. I’m sure there is someone out there going through a similar situation. My tale may not help, but maybe some people would like to comment and weigh in on this topic.”

Please let Nancy and me know what you think in the comments!

Quick shameless plug: Do you have a story to tell? Advice to offer? Did you just have literally the worst date of your life and you must write about it? I’d love to have you as the next Simply Solo Spotlight! Contact me at: simplysoloblog@gmail.com.

Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

Women are supposedly the sex that is misunderstood most often. We have mood swings, cat fights and tend to be more emotionally driven. Men. Well, men claim to be straight forward and direct.

If only it were that easy.

I moved to a new city and didn’t know many people, so I posted something on Craigslist under the friends section. After a week of emailing, phone calls and texting, I met Mike, a 26-year-old. Mike was a guy’s guy who liked tools, video games and dressed in jeans and a grungy t-shirt more often than not. He reminded me of Max on ABC’s new series, “Happy Endings.”

Our friendship turned into meeting each other’s families, which led to being exclusive and talking about our future, getting married and our favorite neighborhoods to raise a family and kids.

Like many others who have posted on Simply Solo before, we were in love and were planning our lives around each other. It was crazy how fast everything was moving, but it seemed right, perfect and how love is supposed to feel.

One night, I had my laptop out and Mike asked if he could use it. I handed over my laptop to him and got up to get a drink. I noticed he was checking his email. Not a big deal, but he was frantically typing away.

I commented, “Hey – writing a novel? Is everything okay?”

As I sat back down on the couch next to him, I leaned over to give him a kiss and my eye caught a subject line of an email, “M2M 26 y/o looking for a good time.”

Hurt, shocked and surprised, I casually asked, “Who are you emailing?”

Mike replied, “Oh, I’m just trying to sell some of my tools and was describing them.”

Brushing it off as no big deal, I let it slide and commented on the movie we were watching as I processed the information. I let it drop. I didn’t pursue it. But, I couldn’t stop thinking that any normal girlfriend would have pushed a little further about what he was doing.

That night, I searched on Craigslist for his city and the major crossroads that he always tells people, read a couple of ads and found one that “sounded” / wrote like he would.

So, I did what I thought any girl would do.

I created a fake email address and pretended I was a guy responding to his posting. I made a fake scenario describing my fake situation and said, “Hey, I’m 26 y/o too and live with my girlfriend. I like video games, work in construction and have never explored this … but it’s something that I’ve been thinking about for a while. Let me know if you would be interested in meeting up. John”

I did this because I did not want to snoop in his e-mail or cause an unnecessary fight. I doubted myself. I didn’t think he would ever post on Craigslist looking to hook up with another guy behind my back.  

But, within 30 minutes, I got an email from MY BOYFRIEND responding to my fake email address. In the email, he indicated that he was curious about hooking up with another guy, but that he wimps out every time.

I didn’t want to look in his email or go through texts. I was just a girl with a gut feeling and an instinct to create a fake account to reply to my then boyfriend’s M2M posting.

I confronted him about the weird email he wrote a couple of days ago. Again, he denied and denied. He tried to convince me that I was being insecure. Finally, I blurted out, “I know about the posting.”

“How could you? You went through my email you sneaky b@&!h?”

“No. Actually not. I replied to your ad. I replied as John Williams and you replied to me.”

From there, the relationship spiraled downward quickly. I felt like he betrayed or thought about betraying me And, I couldn’t fathom being in a relationship with someone who wasn’t 100% sure of our relationship, nevertheless was unsure and confused about his sexuality.

The relationship turned awful quickly. When our intimate relationship ended, he shared the full story with me. He never told any friends, family or previous girlfriends about his desires for fear of being an outcast. I could see his pain of being unsure in his decisions and the confusion in his eyes. I wanted to stay friends and help or encourage him that it is okay to pursue your true feelings, but it never worked out.

My job made me move, so that technically helped me to move on. I had trouble with closure. Maybe he was just exploring and was inquisitive? Maybe it was just a phase of curiosity?

Although no physical cheating happened, how would you feel if your partner was contemplating cheating? What about with the same sex?


15 Comments leave one →
  1. May 24, 2011 8:51 am

    I would have been pissed as hell, if things had been moving as fast as you say. I would have been especially freaked out about the same sex thing. I have nothing against gays but if a guy is that into you, I would surely not expect him to be writing ads for same sex adventures at the same time.

  2. May 24, 2011 10:41 am

    Wow, what an incredible story. The worst part, above everything, and I mean everything, is the deceit.

    There are times with my ex where I wonder if he would have told me had I not dug a little deeper and pried it out of him. It’s hurtful and hard to recover from a situation like that, with that person and with future partners.

    The cliche thing to say would be ‘glad you found out now’. Cheating in my book is not OK. Trust is the foundation of a solid relationship, and when that is gone, what do you have to stand on?

    Great post, thanks for sharing.

  3. Zak permalink
    May 24, 2011 10:47 am

    The cheating thing is bad news, obviously. That’s no different than if he was emailing other women.

    The interest in checking out other guys is a different thing entirely. Don’t we all have fetishes, desires, etc that we’re scared to share, because we don’t want to seem weird to our friends, family and significant others? He may very well have loved you – might still – and may very well have had romantic feelings for you while wanting to explore his other feelings. Perhaps whether he was in a relationship with you or not, he would’ve tried to explore those feelings. It doesn’t mean he’s gay, or not gay, or into you, or not. Perhaps he WAS into you completely but also into guys, just unable to explore or express that. It happens.

    So, accept that he loved you while he was with you – if that’s how you felt – and that he made a mistake of trying to cheat on you by contacting someone else – regardless of their sex. If that’s enough to end the relationship, that’s all you need. The rest is not relevant to why you broke up, unless he was into guys and not into women/you, which doesn’t seem like the case.

    • Nancy permalink
      May 24, 2011 11:09 am

      Zack,

      “Don’t we all have fetishes, desires, etc that we’re scared to share, because we don’t want to seem weird to our friends, family and significant others?”

      exactly!

  4. Jeff W. permalink
    May 24, 2011 10:52 am

    Nancy, what a horrible thing to happen to you. However, it sounds like you still have regrets. You shouldn’t. He was not going through a phase or exploring a curiousity. It is what it is. You should take comfort in the fact that you found out sooner rather than later. Things would have just gotten much worse if you had gotten married and had kids. Good luck to you!

    • Nancy permalink
      May 24, 2011 11:06 am

      thanks, jeff!

      no regrets, c’est le vie 🙂

  5. May 24, 2011 11:53 am

    Infidelity is infidelity. He may have been confused and worried and so-forth but secrets in a relationship are like a slow spreading plague. Sooner or later the outbreak is going to have consumed everything.

    I can only imagine how horrible it was to have to go through something like that and know I would be devastated if someone I loved were not only ‘searching for something else from someone else’ but also that they didn’t feel like they could just be honest with me to begin with.

    • June 1, 2011 11:23 pm

      Wow, well said Matthew. I could not agree more with your thoughts on this!

  6. May 24, 2011 3:33 pm

    I’ve often wondered about all of the bi-curious ads on sites like Craigslist. Most mention being straight and it’s pretty safe to assume that there are girlfriends attached on the other side, probably clueless as all get out. It’s horrible that you had to take such an action as creating an email address (hate that because I am NOT creative with names) and sending a message out, hoping against hope that it would not be your boyfriend. I can’t imagine the pain, disgust and outrage you must have felt!

    If it were me, I would’ve had a hard time trusting him after the fact. I applaud you for wanting to be his friend, but I really hope that you got yourself tested, in case something did happen that he didn’t fess up to.

    I’m all for experimentation with your sexuality. I’m a sexual being too, who happens to only like dick, but don’t experiment with someone else’s emotional and sexual health!

    • Nancy permalink
      May 25, 2011 12:00 am

      yeah .. I’ve checked them out when I was trying to find his ad. Don’t you think there are a ton of bi-curious ads of what seems like married people? crazy stuff.

      • May 25, 2011 3:23 pm

        It’s almost like a whole underground of bi and homosexuality! In my town, it seems to revolve mostly around the gym…but not every gym – only those with saunas and/or steam rooms.

  7. May 24, 2011 5:52 pm

    I’ll bet he was describing his tools.

    (Sorry, couldn’t resist). I think you took the right – and smart – approach in doing a little behind-the-scenes sleuthing through a fake e-mail account. I do think, however, that it could be him going through a phase or exploring his curiosity. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it IS wrong to do so behind your back. If he took it a step further, he’d be putting you at risk for an STD, not to mention heartbreak.

  8. May 24, 2011 11:49 pm

    For a guy who did that …outta my life.

    Life is way too short to think I could “change” or convince him.
    Time to move on.

    • Nancy permalink
      May 24, 2011 11:58 pm

      this all happened over 2 years ago.

      he moved on quickly.

      he got married within a couple months of us breaking up. I ran into him at Target and he told me that he’s still bi-curious about it. ha. I have never been happier than with the decision to leave. But, it makes me sad whenever a person isn’t 100% happy or confident with his/her choices in life.

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