Fannie Fierce

Macking it with a Married Man

Filed By Fannie Fierce | September 14, 2007 11:11 AM | comments

Filed in: Living, Marriage Equality

Dear Fannie

I’m a 25 year old gay male. I live in a small city in the South, where it’s kind of hard to meet guys. I have to admit to using the internet to meet new guys, because the bar scene isn’t really me. I recently met someone online. He emailed me and he’s really sweet, funny… and well… really hot. But the problem is that he’s married. He was very upfront about the fact that he is bisexual and is married. No kids are involved, yet. Now, I know that I should just walk away because I can’t expect an LTR… but I’m tempted to hook up with him. What should I do?

-- The Other Man

Hey TOM (I hope that your name isn’t actually Tom, and the acronym is just a coincidence),

So, you’re thinking about getting down and dirty with a nuptial-knotted mister (so sue me… I like alliterations). Now, your average advice columnist would tell you that you’re a dirty shmuck for trying to get involved with a married man. How dare you threaten the stability of this clearly healthy heterosexual relationship! Damn queers!

Well, lucky for you, I’m not your average advice columnist… and frankly, giving you a slap on the wrist for thinking about bedding your beau with a bride would be far too easy.

Here’s how I see it. Once a cheater, always a cheater. People who cheat, I believe have a life-long propensity for cheating. Yes, the specific relationship they were in may have been on the rocks. Yes, maybe it was just that one time, but I will bet if someone did one of those nifty, authoritative “studies,” they’d find that people who have cheated on a partner in the past will almost indefinitely cheat again. But it’s important to identify who is doing the cheating.

You, TOM, aren’t the one betraying a spouse. That’s his commitment to keep, not yours. I’m tired of mistresses (and extra misters) throughout history getting all the flack for sleeping with married people. That kind of discourse tends to erase the fault of the married person, who is the one who made the commitment to his/her/one’s spouse.

Now, maybe it’s because I don’t have this overpowering reverence for the “sacred institution” of marriage, but I actually don’t have a problem with you hooking up with the married man. The fact that he sought you out, the fact that you don’t know his wife, etc., indicate that married guy already has the intent on having extra-marital sex. Whether he sleeps with you or not, he already wants sex with someone that is not his wife. If it’s not you, it’ll be someone else.

So go ahead, jump on that wedded wang. Just know that what’s happening is just sex. Don’t go expecting him to leave his wife for you or anything. And even if he did, I wouldn’t get with him LTR-style, because chances are that he’ll still be looking for a different kind of Nancy.

Also, just to clarify to all my readers who may be shocked at my response: If the married guy wrote in to me asking if he should cheat on his wife with TOM, I’d rip him a new one, a la Fannie Fantabulous Fierceness. I don’t condone cheaters. It’s cheap and dishonest. If you’re going to have sex outside of a relationship, it should ALWAYS be cleared with all parties involved. Honest non-monogamy is the only kind of non-monogamy I condone. I just don’t think that TOM is doing anything wrong, and I’m tired of people coming down on the “other man/woman” for violating something they didn’t commit to.


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I disagree. If TOM knowingly sleeps with a married man, he's just as unethical as the cheater. I'm poly, and I'd never get involved with someone who's in a committed monogamous relationship, even if it was just sex. I don't care who he's banging at home, but I do care that I'm participating in another person's deception. His responsibility to his spouse isn't my business, but my integrity is. I'm not going to be a home wrecker, even if he's the one calling for the wrecker ball(s).

Interesting. I generally have issues with "morality" as an abstract concept or people or people holding themselves to some tests of character that don't have much impact to the way the world is, and yet I know that this woman's husband sleeping around could cause her a lot of pain. And I'm also generally adverse to assigning blame, like it's the dude in the relationship's fault and no one else's, although how does this turn into the person who made him/herself available's fault suddenly?

Anyone who's looked for sex in the places I have knows has been hit on by married guy (well, guys who at least say they're married) and turned them down. I don't do that sort of thing, and now I'm wondering why, since my general feeling is that I'm not going to participate in something that I know will hurt another person. Then again, I'd throw that into one of those personal character issues, because, as you say and I totally agree, if someone wants to cheat with you, they're going to cheat with someone.

Oh well, I suppose it comes down to my reaction to others doing it. I mostly wouldn't sleep with those married guys just because they're bad in bed and definitely not what I'm looking for, and maybe I'm just building some sort of moral code around that. Or the other way around. I don't know. But you're totally right in that the misters and mistresses on the side usually get unduly blamed in cases of cheating.

But then again, that's probably because many in het, married relationships see their partner's sexuality as property, and the other person as a thief.

Well, there are interesting rationalizations on all sides here, but honestly, something like this is what I might have expected to read in Savage Love.

What is interesting is that everyone is expecting the wife to be in the dark about the whole affair (since it wasn't mentioned in TOM's note whether the husband and wife had an understanding or not). Might it not be better to find out if the guy's wife doesn't really mind before going off on the guy? For all you know, his wife could have violated the 'put out after marriage' contract or the 'keep looking good after marriage' contract to drive him off to get his rocks off elsewhere.

Here's another little rationalization you can try: Since he's gonna cheat with someone anyway, it might as well be you if you practice safe sex so that you won't be putting his wife at risk. After all, if he went to someone else, there's no guarantee that he'll be safe and thus endanger his wife.

See how easy it is to rationalize actions once you make up your mind about something?

What is interesting is that everyone is expecting the wife to be in the dark about the whole affair (since it wasn't mentioned in TOM's note whether the husband and wife had an understanding or not).

I wondered that too. Since he was upfront about being bi with TOM, maybe he's been as stand-up with his wife.

Welcome Fannie! Love the spicy, no-nonsense response. I agree that Tom best not expect anything (but possibly good sex and heartache, depending). As for responsibility, I don't think there's enough of that going around these days. Though in the end, like attracts like, so if Tom's the cheatin' kind, he'll likely opt to be a co-cheater (it does take two after all). If he's not, he's likely to opt out of this oh-so-enticing opportunity. I think if someone did one of those "nifty, authoritative 'studies,'" you mention, that they'd also find that those who co-cheat are at higher risk of eventually also cheating, than those who do not. Like attracts like. If Tom's wife does know, well, that's a whole other post!