You know how it is. The days get filled up with mundane details, frustrations, problems, issues and housework. Wow, SO not the stuff of romance! It can be hard to break out of the necessaries of life to experience reconnecting as two people who are far more than the typical life going on around them. Recently, my husband Thomas and I did something about that, albeit reluctantly. We cheated on each other.
Yup. We went off for a weekend away and each met someone new and had a wonderful time. Here’s the catch: it was still the two of us but we changed our names and pretended we were both at the hotel for a conference, just meeting each other. Over dinner, we asked each other questions about what schools we attended, what we had wanted to be when we grew up, what our upbringing had been like, what our favorite music and movies were – the delicious stuff of getting to know someone for the first time. There was laughter, flirting and gentle probing for insight into each other. We never talked about “relationships” or “significant others.” That would have led us down a potentially rocky road. Plus, we didn’t want to see each other as cheaters. Just unattached people meeting, feeling an attraction and getting to know each other.
The end result? It was fun, even, dare I say, exhilarating. Thomas and I rediscovered each other again (and ourselves again – I had forgotten about some of the dreams I had for my life while I was in college, for instance.) To see ourselves as not being someone’s spouse or parent and instead to be individuals getting back to basics, was a good exercise for us as individuals and as a couple. Sometimes we assume we know all there is to know about our partner just because we share a life (and a bathroom) with them. But sometimes, it’s really good to forget all that and return to two strangers, meeting for the first time, getting to know each other and deciding they want to know more.
Oh, and I can practically hear you asking out there if my dalliance with this handsome stranger continued on past dinner? Well, let’s just say flirting and getting to know each other anew, has its benefits.
Courtney has suggested we do a little “stranger” play-acting before but it just felt too weird and forced. I mean, we’ve known each other for-ever! So I’ve never been game for that game. But on our little getaway, maybe under the influence of being outside of our normal surroundings, and with a hotel room to return to instead of our house (and laundry and dishes, etc.) to “break the spell,” I was open to the idea.
You know what? It was fun. And interesting. And exciting. It wasn’t the idea of cheating (albeit pretend). It was, as Courtney says, the seeing each other and ourselves anew. It was a great exercise in getting outside of our everyday existence and our very solid roles. We’ll plan another “affair” sometime soon, this time, very willingly. And with absolutely no guilt!
Tango with us: