Furthering the discussion of radical honesty and its connection to the vow to honor your partner, I think it’s important to address one of the greatest fears couples face: infidelity. Like weight loss without exercising or changing your diet, people look for an easy fix to protecting their relationship from this catastrophic event.
The latest quick fix to enter the fray is the Anti-Cheating Wedding Ring. For $550, you can get a ring that imprints “I’m married” onto your ring finger. The idea is that, even if you remove your ring, the evidence of your marital status remains.
This is a wonderful idea that would fit nicely into Alice’s Wonderland. If simple knowledge of marital status stopped infidelity, I probably would be out of business.
Was Rielle Hunter “unaware” that John Edwards was married? Was Monica Lewinsky ignorant about what the title “The First Lady” meant as it applied to Hillary? Were the women who slept with Tiger Woods, or Arnold Schwarzenneger equally in the dark about the marital status of their lovers?
The idea that this special ring would stop women (and men) who can read flies in the face of reality.
Years ago, I was doing my usual workout at my town’s fitness center. There were only a few people on site. I was wearing my wedding ring as usual. One of the men began to ask “innocent” questions about my workout: what was the purpose of this exercise, how do you do it right, what weight should he use, etc. Over the course of the next few weeks, we seemed to be at the center working out at the same time. It soon became clear that, if I responded, he would be happy to oblige.
On some level I was flattered because I knew I was a good ten years older than he was (and the mother of two children). I was also cynically amused because my wedding ring was ever present on my left hand. With the scrutiny he gave me, he certainly didn’t miss it. He just didn’t care.
If I analyzed my clients’ infidelities, I would guess the majority are not strangers. They are coworkers, friends, in-laws, old flames. Most of these people are well aware of each others’ marital status. Very few are so disconnected that they would be fooled by the simple removal of a wedding ring.
Whether you want to own it or not, infidelity is always a choice. You don’t accidentally set up a page on Match.com or Ashley Madison. You don’t find yourself innocently walking down the street one minute and suddenly find yourself naked, in bed with someone who isn’t your spouse the next.
The only way I know how to keep infidelity at bay in your marriage is to make choices that support your relationship. Practicing radical honesty is a good place to start.
You know if you’re married or not. You’re responsible for your own behavior. The consequences of that behavior belong to you too.
What keeps you faithful to your marriage? How important is honesty in supporting your faithfulness? Do you ever hedge on that honesty?
- How Your Honor Vow Can Affair Proof Your Marriage
- Will You Keep Your Promise?
- Men, Marriage, Sex, and Ashley Madison
Learn more about Lesli’s book and how you can make your vows come alive.