The dangerous old flame "Cheating is never to do with how attractive you are," says Fashion Model Marie Helvin
We never know why people truly cheat, but for Janet Davis* it was not the attraction factor that caused her to step out on her two year relationship. It was a lot more.
"Going into that relationship, I thought that this was it. It was someone I was pretty close to and if I couldn't make it work with him then I couldn't make it work with anybody," she admitted.
It started off just how she expected. A friendship that transitioned into a relationship. Someone who she could turn to and something that felt natural.
At first, there were little hints of jealousy that she found cute and she ignored it. Not realising what really was manifesting in her relationship.
Within months, her spouse started to become extra critical and wanted to know her whereabouts throughout the day.
His sweet little checking-ins turned into feeling like she was reporting to a parole officer. The relationship soon started to feel stifling. However, she claimed to have loved her partner, so she stayed and tried to make it work.
"I sat down with him trying to explain how I felt and he would fix it for like a couple weeks. Being that we were good friends before, I was aware of his past and how heartbroken he was over a previous girlfriend cheating on him. So I gave him some rope," she told Flair.
They still had their good moments and there were times when she felt like he loved her and this was the best relationship. Then the jealousy would return and knock the wind out of her.
Then the familiar face presented itself.
She would call him the one that got away. Running into him at a college friend's link up, she never expected to feel her stomach still turn for this old flame. It was difficult for her to avoid him but she tried to for the rest of the night chatting only in a group setting, well aware that what she was feeling was not something to play with.
Going home that night, her boyfriend's interrogation caused a huge fight. Who was there? Who did she talk to? Who did she sit beside? Did she ever sleep with any of these friends?
Then the next morning the old flame called just to check in. He apparently got her number from another friend and wanted to catch up. He checked in later. Funny enough, she was surprised how friendly the conversation went and not intimate.
SHAME AND GUILT
For months, all he was to her was a sounding board for her thoughts, her plans and her frustrations. Even though she had feelings for him, she had no intention for it to become sexual. So when she ended up having more than a casual evening with him, shame and guilt engulfed her.
But with every fight with her boyfriend she found herself in his arms. Soon she found herself being an expert in manoeuvring through her boyfriend's interrogations leaving no loose ends.
"The thing about keeping tabs is that I also knew his routine and knew when he was not going to call. Even his surprise pop-ups could be preempted," she admitted.
She never understood why she never left. All the work she put in. Deep down, she hoped her boyfriend would get it together. But in the meantime, she needed to be happy and she was not.
After about five months into the cheating, the initial guilt came back because this was not her at all. She was never a cheater and that was not something that she was proud of. So she ended both relationships.
"I needed time to get myself together to know what I wanted. When a relationship starts to change who you are and not for the better, you have to put a stop to it. I wasn't happy and that was why I cheated. I was hoping for a change into something that I knew wasn't just because I loved the person. That's no way to live," she concluded.
*Name changed upon request.