Here Is What Cheating And Being Cheated On Taught Me About Monogamy

 Joselito Briones
Joselito Briones

If I were to list my relationship history out resume style, you’d see a short Experience section – even though some claim that a year and a half as your longest run is like 10 years in gay time.

You won’t even find an Education section. In the Qualifications, you’d find ‘willingness to bend over backwards (and forward),’ ‘Perfect cuddler,’ ‘Perfect kisser,’ ‘Never promises something I know I might break,’ ‘A happy go lucky kind of guy, despite my RBF,’ etc.

If you contacted my References, they’d probably bring up my clinginess, my overly sarcastic sense of humor, frequent mood swings under pressure, frequent mood swings after being lied to and cheated on… and… oh yeah… I’m also a manipulative liar and a cheater (under the right circumstances, in my defense).

Some of the nastiest moments in my past have come from the heavy emotions that I’ve delved into upon being lied to and cheated on. I’ve also gone so far as to becoming the thing that hurt me, and ended up cheating out of spite. After all is said and done, being able to come out of the darkness of those emotions and look at the past with a learned mind, I’ve come to accept a new distrust on the institution of monogamy itself.

I think that, as humans, we have a subconscious need to assert dominance and feed our egos by aspiring to uphold the traditional ideology of monogamy, which detriments our ability to hold meaningful relationships.

Infidelity and dishonesty are huge factors in the endings of what could be long lasting partnerships. Take my experiences, for example:

Never in a million years did I believe that infidelity was possible for me to infringe upon a partner. That is, until I found myself in the right place and time, where saying yes to cheating was far easier than I could have ever imagined.

I cheated out of spite, out of being lied to, out of thinking “if he hasn’t already, he definitely will.” However, despite knowing that I would be so heartbroken to have a partner cheat on me, I followed through.

And when the time came when I was cheated on, of course, I felt betrayed as anyone would. And I immediately beat myself up over being so hypocritical. I came to understand that when my partner mirrored those actions, that it was very illogical to say “never”, simply because you never know in what situations you’ll find yourself in the future. I also questioned how I could cheat and then lose my fucking mind when my partner cheated on me. I had to confess my faults. I had to look within myself. Still, I didn’t feel that I could continue to love or trust without a guard. What about my partner having sex with someone else bothered and shook me so heavily? Because at the end of it, he loved me no less. Just as I loved him no less after cheating.

I began to understand that the entire mentality of feeling perpetrated against stems back to insecurity, on several fronts.

In its nature, monogamy is an institution of essentially owning another human being’s sexuality.

We command that our partners remain sexually exclusive with us, an idea that is backed by the institution of marriage. But what these ideas are vastly neglecting is the nature and complexity of human sexuality; humans find more than one person sexually/romantically attractive. But in today’s day and age, there are so many people that become so offended and jealous when their partners do so much as simply finding someone else attractive. It’s become the unhealthy, subconscious emotional default and unspoken contract under which we enter relationships.

We have become so dependent on the idea of a partner fulfilling our self worth. We look to them to reciprocate the love we give out. We use this idea of being able to have a partner that no one else can have to validate our egos and assert our dominance. Through that perception, we end up holding our partners to unrealistic standards and expectations, and our egos and feelings are shot when they aren’t met. We are heavily let down at the slightest bit of retraction from that spiritual and emotional food with which we nourish ourselves, all the while neglecting to realize that we should be feeding our souls from our own supply, and not someone else’s.

Being cheated on and lied to and having my trust broken, and also committing those acts against someone else has taught me a deeper form of love, trust, and communication.

I have come to learn that a partner having an eye, a taste, a yearning for someone who is not me is never going to be wrong. I accept that I am a flawed and limited human; I cannot be everything to a partner who, like me and the rest of humanity, finds beauty and attraction in a wide array of people who are not me. I accept that I have to stop trying to change myself into what others want to see and I have to love what I have. I accept that I have attractions to more than one person and that acknowledging such does not detract from my love for anyone. I accept that I am a fool if I am to not embrace a partner’s attraction to someone else. I accept that I am a fool to let any more partnerships wither away due to any insecurities I hold within myself.

With all that said, here’s a vow to my future lover(s): I promise to love and accept you as a mirror of myself; a flawed, fragile, complex and free being within your own right.

I promise to not leave through the backdoor at the first sign of adversity or when my feelings are hurt. I hope that you find happiness with me and within yourself and I hope that you choose to share that with me, without limits. I promise to be upfront and honest about my desires. I promise to love. I promise to give you me; because that’s all I have. And if that doesn’t work, I promise to let you fly to find a place where you truly belong. TC mark

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