I’d rather you not know my name. What I did was unspeakable and the reasons behind my actions are not as clear as I thought they were back then.
I broke my vows. They are as empty as the heart that once belonged to me.
In the bad and good times; the bad was really the worst times then. I did what I thought would heal my wounds. And I paid for it through a nasty divorce.
I am not perfect, that is what makes me human. I did what I did because I felt driven to commit myself to someone who appreciated and paid attention to who I really was. I made mistakes, mistakes I cannot justify by any means whatsoever. I had no right to break another’s heart while in pursuit of my own wholeness.
You can call me selfish. I deserve that. I left my better half broken and torn into many pieces that would take time to be put back together.
It began with minor quarrels that seemed harmless to him but lethal to me. The way he put back cutlery into the drawers, walking into the house with shoes full of dirt, coming home late after a boys night out… The faults were endless. The minor quarrels grew into full-blown arguments. It was frequent. I had to get out of the house. I had to avoid our house as often as I could.
I was afraid to talk to him. Anything we said sparked out criticism, misunderstanding, sarcasm, and hostility from both of us. A compliment was accepted by a nod followed by a grunt than the lock of a door. A distant hum of a car engine and off he goes, leaving me in the empty house we call home.
After the arguments and cold treatment escalated, the bedroom became too hostile to take refuge. No romance. No small talk. Just a bedside lamp and a novel to lull him to sleep and when he does, he turns away on his side, leaving his back to me in a staring contest. Two weeks later, the guest room was his new resting den and our bed, my cold coffin.
Fewer dates and night-outs
I spent more time with my married girlfriends. I invited them over to have a book reading session and steamy gossip reviews. This was an escape, a better outlet to rant out my frustrations and fears to familiar people than social media, where my husband or his friends could easily find out my bad mouthing habits our marriage.
He spent his free time, with his friends, in bars, restaurants, social functions, home parties, and on business trips. We texted each other our whereabouts and nothing more. When stuck together in the house, he binges on football games, wrestling, car, and motorbike races; or works in the garage repairing something that happened to need his handiwork whenever I walk into the room.
Overprotective and jealous
The hostility was wedging a rift between us, which grew bigger and bigger with each passing day. Until we decided to have a truce and patch things up.
However, he was really jealous of my male friends and workmates. He was all over my phone checking messages and call logs under male names. His phobia got worse each time we went out and men ogled at me. He would pull me closer and push me around.
He hovers in the room when a call comes in just to hear who the caller was. It was unbearable. There was a time I came home at 10pm after a massive file compiling and report writing exercise back in my office. As soon as I stepped through the door, he was all over me asking for answers to questions that never had one.
‘Who is he?
Where does he live?
So, u decided to cheat on me?
Did you think I am foolish? That I wouldn’t notice?”
He was frothing at the mouth while speaking. Then, all of a sudden, something hot and painful crossed my cheek. He slapped me.
A shoulder to lean on
Things went downhill in my marriage faster than I expected. It was only two years since our wedding. Who would have thought our marriage will be among the bigger fraction of divorce statistics in Kenya.
I met him. My friend Joseph. We had been acquaintances long before I married my husband. He was sympathetic to my plight. He listened to my grumbling and pitiful thoughts when we met at lunch, in the morning or left for home. He was kind, never judging and made me laugh. The closeness grew as we graduated to phone calls in the night just to check up on each other or wish another a good night. He was also married but according to him, his marriage was boring, uneventful and flat. It was unromantic.
His wife was perfect. She supported him, she didn’t nag him in any way, she was not a complainer and she had a job as better paying as Joseph. He said they never argued for his wife was always on his side. He had three kids, all two years apart from each other. My husband and I didn’t have kids. Joseph once let it slip that he hated his kids for stealing the romance from his marriage. The constant crying and need for attention wore him and his wife away, including her affection.
We were all the same, Joseph and I. We had unsatisfying marriages and to crown it all, was the unhappiness. We understood each other. We had a connection.
It just happened. That day, at the end of the year staff party. We were all drunk and I had just arrived at the reception angry and worn out from the fight I had with my husband. He didn’t want me to go.
The anger and the need to be loved drove me to Joseph. The party was fun with him in it, then it was all over and we ended up in a motel to spend the night.
We spent more nights together after that. Guilt was part of the deal when it was over and went back to our spouses. Then it was gone the next day when Joseph and I met.
Joseph’s wife discovered our forbidden secret after she put a personal detective on Joseph’s trail. She had photos, texts and phone recordings of our affair, enough evidence to put us under siege with legal lawsuits.
She confronted my husband on the affair and it broke him into a thousand pieces.
I signed the divorce papers a month later after our three weeks separation. Joseph went back to his wife and children leaving me all alone to deal with the aftermath of a backfired affair. His wife forgave him after a few weeks of cold treatment and harsh words. However, at that time, I was facing the full force of resentment and hostility from my husband. How unfair is life?
Now, i am all alone in my new apartment writing this to strangers in the internet. The court session was long and tiresome. However, I had to put this down in my social media page just to share my experience with someone somewhere who will or is in need of this.
This is my story. What is yours?