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Comments Credits
Comments by YACCS
Monday, August 29, 2005

I'm a coward and I want to die

See what you did. Grandma's so stressed by
your cheating, she's smoking weed.

As a break from Acts of God and Acts of idiocy, I bring you Cary Tennis, who actually gave a decent answer.

Married with two children ... and a secret girlfriend in Italy
How'd I get into this mess, and how will I ever get out?

- - - - - - - - - - - -
By Cary Tennis

Aug. 29, 2005 | Dear Cary,

I am suffering from the worst kind of wound, the self-inflicted kind. At every step of the way I've known that I was behaving in a dangerous, irresponsible way, sure to cause myself and others pain, and yet I've continued to march along the path to my own destruction.

About 18 months ago I went to Italy on a lengthy business trip. While there, I met a wonderful woman. Sexy, witty, charming. Oh, and did I mention completely smitten with me? We conversed only in Italian. She showed me the sites and cooked me gamberetti e pinoli. She introduced me to her family and her friends. When I left we pledged to stay in touch by phone, e-mail and instant messaging until the time came when we could be together.

It would have been the perfect romance except for one minor detail. I told her I was single but I am married. It was just harmless flirting at first and I never thought it would go as far as it has.

So I returned home to my decent, loving wife and my two young children. They were overjoyed to see me. Their wonderful father and husband had returned.

Meanwhile, I kept in touch with my Italian girlfriend. I went back to Italy in November and again in June. Each time I told myself that this was it. I would either come clean or come up with some pretense to end it. She began to talk about marriage and arranging her life so we could be together. I had to end it. I knew I did.

Through a complicated set of circumstances (mostly of my own concoction and language issues), neither of these women have any idea that the other exists. My wife thinks I'm going through a busy stretch and is concerned that I seem distant. My Italian girlfriend is anxious to move to the next step where we can be together.

And here I am in the middle, the lying, deceptive bastard. It's hard to describe the depths of self-loathing that I feel, and the knowledge that there is no way to come out of this without causing terrible pain to everyone and lose both women, neither of whom deserve what I've done. Neither do my children.

Neither do I, for that matter. I can't for the life of me figure out why I put myself in this situation in the first place, wrecking my own happiness in the process. An early onset midlife crisis? Narcissistic disorder? The natural tendency to screw up a good thing?

Instead of the obvious step of coming clean and trying to rebuild, I've come up with the even more insane idea of killing myself and leaving a note to explain what I'd done and that I was too much of a coward to face the hurt and disgust and hatred of people that I love.

And yet, being a coward, I doubt I'd be able to manage that, either.

Any thoughts, Cary, other than the condemnation that I deserve?


Dear Screwup,

Well, yeah, I have a few thoughts. But first, that pasta dish you mentioned looks really, really delicious. I'm so hungry right now I'm going to get up from the computer this minute and walk down to the Ferry Building and look for some food, and when I get back I'll try to help you out on this one. Wow, that was good. Geez, am I the most self-centered guy in the room or what? Oh, no, there you are!

Cary's answer was actually funny.

What a selfish fuck. Let me kill myself and leave my wife to raise two kids on her own because I wanted to screw around in Italy. This man is my hero, a coward AND a cheat.

Uh, actually the answer is really, really simple. Dump the Italian woman and tell her the truth. Even if she freaks out, screaming at your wife in Italian should be pointless, unless she speaks it as well.

Why did he put himself in this situation?

Readers, you're free to guess, but here's my answer: because he could.

posted by Steve @ 5:27:00 PM

5:27:00 PM

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