It’s been all over the news this week. The Ashley Madison list scandal. All these poor people who have, somehow, had their names released to the public for doing what they thought, at the time, was a good idea. It turns out that, perhaps, it wasn’t such a good idea after all. They got outed, busted, and somewhat dragged through the mud, but none of their shame was probably nearly as bad as poor Josh Duggar’s. It just seems the guy can’t catch a break lately, but of course, it’s all his own doing. Sounds to me like he tried to get himself a quiver full of Ashley Madison and got busted.
All week, when the topic comes up, we keep going back to the reasons that people cheat. Is it because home life is just too boring? Is it because the wife / husband is no longer attractive? Is it because there is no “action” going on at home, so the person feels like he / she needs to get it somewhere else? Is it the thrill of the hunt? Is it a combination of all of these? My gut feeling tells me it’s different for everyone and that it’s probably a combination of all these and more.
I’m an attorney. My practice is general, but probably about 60-70% domestic relations, including divorce. I see accusations of adultery every week. Sometimes the spouses turn a blind eye to the adultery. Sometimes they say once is enough, and sometimes they actually encourage it and then try, later, to claim it’s a cause for divorce. It’s amazing the lengths people will go to to hide an affair. The question I always come back to, of course, is why not just get a divorce to start with? The reason for that is typically that the person committing the adultery wants to make sure that he / she has a new fish on the hook before releasing the other from the live well, so to speak.
In Duggar’s case, I have talked with several friends about his plight. His poor wife, with four kids with this guy, apparently has no resources or backing from her family (except her brother – go brother!) to escape from this situation. I’m sure she could, given a friend or two, like mine, who say “You don’t have to put up with this anymore.” (Thanks to my three friends from about 10 years ago – they know who they are.) I’m sure she could if she could escape her religion, which apparently (according to several news reports) tells her that, not only does she have to stay married to him because it’s “God’s will,” but that his cheating, lying ways are somehow her fault. Excuse me? I don’t think she condoned his behavior (“Yeah, Josh, please go hire a prostitute since I’m pregnant and all.”). I don’t think she knows that there is another option. This makes me very sad.
I also wonder, if in Duggar’s case, it was that he could get it anytime he wanted it. The whole Duggar clan and their friends claim that it’s a woman’s duty to submit to her husband at his will. Well, this makes me wonder – if his will is always granted, where is the fun in the chase or the uncertainty of when he’ll get it. It may be that poor Mr. Duggar just wanted to have some excitement in his life, who knows.
A friend and I were likening this saga to the Tiger Woods / Ellen Nordegren saga a few years ago. I am not the type who would sit idly by, like Anna Duggar, and let someone like Josh treat me like that and get by with it. Although it might take a bit of time, I would eventually get out. I did it once, and I’d do everything in my power to not be in that situation again. I think people make their own way. I also think that people (should) learn from their mistakes. I know I did mine.
I’m also the type of friend that would be standing behind Ellen Nordegren saying, “Here, try the 9-iron!”, while she was bashing in the hood of Tiger’s car. If I was Anna’s friend, I’d be finding a way to not only divorce the idiot but take the house, kids, cars, and anything else I could get my hands on. If he did what he’s admitted to doing, he deserves it.