Tag Archives: trust

Take off your moccasins

Screenshot of Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn fr...

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One of my all time favorite movies is Charade, with Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn. In it, they have this great exchange, where Hepburn’s character is trying to determine if Grant’s character is trustworthy:

REGGIE (Hepburn): Alex, how can you tell if anyone’s lying or not?

DYLE (Grant): You can’t.

R: There must be some way.

D: There’s an old riddle about two tribes of Indians. The Whitefeet always tell the truth and the Blackfeet always lie. So one day you meet an Indian, you say, “Hey Indian, what are you, a truthful Whitefoot or a lying Blackfoot?” He says, “I’m a truthful Whitefoot.” But which is he?

R: Why couldn’t you just look at his feet?

D: Because he’s wearing moccasins.

R: Well then he’s a truthful Whitefoot, of course.

D: Why not a lying Blackfoot?

R: Which one are you?

D: A truthful Whitefoot.

Of course, you (along with Reggie) have to wonder if he is. After all, wouldn’t a lying Blackfoot say the same thing?

There’s actually a longer brain teaser (scroll down about a third of the way down the page) about lying Blackfeet and truthful Whitefeet. It involves a professor at a fork in the road trying to get to a village, and he doesn’t want to get lost, but how can he trust the answer he gets from the native in front of him?

The point is, how do you know who you can trust? And rarely are humans entirely truthful nor are there people who lie all the time, regardless of the fact that we say, “If his mouth is moving, he’s lying.” So then the questions multiply – Is he trustworthy? Is what he is saying the truth?

Can you ever really know for sure?

Are you a truthful Whitefoot or a lying Blackfoot? Take off your moccasins, please.

(I couldn’t embed video, but here’s the clip from Charade.  You can also view the movie in it’s entirety on youtube.)

Not Heartbroken

My heart is not broken.  It’s really not.  I’m hurt that I was lied to.  I’m disgusted that I was cheated on.  I’m angry that I have no closure.  And I wouldn’t mind it much if I heard his balls got mangled in, say, the People Mover at the airport.  But I am not heartbroken. 

I don’t want him back.  I am so incredibly glad I am not still with him.  And I think that may be why I haven’t really, really cried.  I fight off tears often enough, but it’s really over the anger.  I feel sick to my stomach, but it’s really over the disgust.  My heart does not need to mend.

To that end, I’m starting to date again.

Am I ready, really ready?  Probably not.  But I think it will do me a world of good to get back out there, and it will serve as a reminder (I hope) that there are still good men out there.  It will help me stop dwelling.  Hopefully I can trust again. 

And it may supply you, reader, with a wealth of humor, because trust me, there is some funny stuff out there.

For instance, I got an email from this guy the other day, and he said:  “…feel free to right me, if your smart enough.”

Yes, including the typos, which is what had me laughing so hard I nearly shot water out my nose. 

I don’t mean to make fun of him.  He was very sweet in his email, and English was quite obviously not his first language.  I thanked him for the lovely email, and let him know nicely that I wasn’t interested.  He replied to thank me for replying to him.  Very sweet.

Epilogue (AKA Part 4)

This is the fourth (and,I hope, final) thing I will write about this.  Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 to get the whole story.

Were there warning signs with The Pilot? Sure. But it’s not like I ignored them. I confronted him directly any time I thought something seemed odd. And he lied, every time. I think of other things he said, things he did, while we were together, and I now see every last thing as a lie, whether it was or wasn’t.

  • When he said he loved me, he lied.
  • When he kissed me, he lied.
  • When he said he was sitting in a crash pad in Philly, on call, he lied.
  • When he said he was going to visit his parents, he lied.
  • When I woke with a headache and got up so as not to disturb him, and he followed me into the living room and sat with me on the couch, saying he couldn’t sleep without me, he lied.
  • When he buried his nose in my hair and (I thought) unconsciously inhaled my scent, he lied.
  • When he held and kissed my hand, he lied.
  • When he snuggled up next to me at night and told me how much he loved my bed, how much he missed it when he was gone, missed me when he was gone, he lied.

The thing I’m constantly wondering about is, does he feel any guilt about what he’s done to me, to her? Did he feel any guilt when he was actually in a relationship with both of us? And I keep coming up with the same answer – NO. And that really freaks me out, because that would make him a psychopath.

Think I’m being a bit extreme? Consider the description in Wikipedia: 

The prototypical psychopath has deficits or deviances in several areas: interpersonal relationships, emotion, and self-control. Psychopaths gain satisfaction through antisocial behavior, and do not experience shame, guilt, or remorse for their actions. Psychopaths lack a sense of guilt or remorse for any harm they may have caused others, instead rationalizing the behavior, blaming someone else, or denying it outright…. All of this belies their tendency to make a good, likable first impression. Psychopaths have a superficial charm about them, enabled by a willingness to say anything without concern for accuracy or truth…. Psychopaths also have a markedly distorted sense of the potential consequences of their actions, not only for others, but also for themselves. They do not, for example, deeply recognize the risk of being caught, disbelieved or injured as a result of their behaviour.

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The Anger

I’m really having to fight the urge to be petty. You know how they say never to break up with a songwriter, because they will have the last word? Well, the same could be said for a blogger. I’ve already researched the defamation and libel laws. ( “To prove libel, which is the same thing as written defamation, the plaintiff has to prove that the blogger published a false statement of fact …” – IOW, if it’s true, I can’t be sued for libel or defamation.) I’ve thought about posting his full name, DOB, what company he flies for, etc, so that anyone in the future who searches his name (future girlfriends, maybe?) will know. I’d love to let his mother know what kind of son she raised, let his sister know what kind of man he is, let his aunt know that her husband isn’t the only one in the family to cheat. I’m afraid that one day, I won’t be able to stop myself from doing those things.

I am so freaking mad at him, at what he’s done. I’m pissed that he lied. I’m pissed that I was fooled by him. I’m pissed that I’ve wasted a year and a half of my life loving a man that doesn’t exist. I’m pissed that his friends must think he’s such a stud, a girl in each city, and were high-fiving him behind my back the whole time. I’m pissed that I had unprotected sex with him, almost from the beginning, because I thought we were in a monogamous relationship, I’m pissed that he risked my health in that way.

And, yeah, I’m mad at myself, too. I’m mad that I believed him. That I didn’t sometimes push harder. I’m mad that I’m an easy-going person, that I respected him enough to allow his excuse of “I’m a private person” to dissuade me from posting more stuff online, on Facebook, where he could be found out sooner.

It makes me so mad, because things were coming to a head, anyway. I was determined to have a serious conversation about the state of our relationship, but I wanted to get through the holidays first.

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I agree with It Never Rains In Seattle, that he probably cut and ran when he found out that the other woman had emailed me. I think she probably confronted him, and he probably lied to her and said I was just a friend, maybe a friend who had “imagined” a relationship with him, and then he cut me out completely, maybe at her request. It kills me that he essentially snuck into my house while I wasn’t there to drop off my house key, and didn’t bother to even leave a note. Not even a simple post it note with “I’m sorry” on it, so at least I wouldn’t wonder and worry like I did. Heck, even Berger left Carrie a post it note.  (And, as a side note, I like what I found on this website:  “Break up in person! This cannot be stressed enough… have the courtesy to say goodbye face to face…. Use integrity and be honest as to why you are leaving…. Both parties will have some closure….”)

I’m big on closure. If I don’t have closure, I will continue thinking about it, breaking it apart, studying it, trying to figure it out. It’s killing me that I don’t have closure. I want to know why he decided to have a relationship with two women. Was he not satisfied with one, and if so, which one? Did we offer different things? Did he honestly fall in love with both of us and wasn’t able to decide which one to keep? Or was it simply an ego trip, to see if he could get away with it?

I still wish I could talk to The Pilot one last time. I would love an apology, an explanation. I know that’s wishful thinking, but what can I say, I’m an optimist at heart. I simply can’t understand how you can carry on two relationships, the way he did. How you can love someone, and do this to them. And I’m not just talking about me – I’m talking about her, too. If he loved her, how could he do this? If he loved me, how could he do this? It’s simply beyond my capacity of understanding.

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The Hurt

Ever been picked last for the baseball team?

This is why the women on The Bachelor cry, even when they are eliminated on the first episode. It makes you feel like you’re not good enough.

Is she prettier than me? Smarter than me? Thinner? Funnier? Nicer? A better person?

I know this is stupid, and that I am an amazing, beautiful, intelligent woman. But that doesn’t stop the questions. Why did he pick her over me? Was it because he was dating her before me? Was it because he loved her more?

I’ve been telling myself that it’s because he knew, if he picked me and I found out, he wouldn’t have me anyway, but he still had a chance at keeping her. Because once I found out it would have been over. I’ve always wondered if I would stay with a man who cheated on me, but in the scenario I’ve always imagined, it’s a one-time thing. This was so much worse.

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The man I was in love with didn’t exist. I had an imaginary boyfriend.

Honestly, I hate to say it, but it would be easier to handle if he had died. And, actually, it would really be almost accurate to say he had committed suicide. He, the him I knew, ceased to exist.

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The Worry

I don’t believe trust should be earned, I believe it should be given. I don’t think you can have a good relationship without trust already being a part of it. I still believe that, but I’m going to have a hard time operating that way in the future. How can I ever believe anything any future man I date says to me? I really worry about this. I’m going to constantly be questioning what he says, my own instincts, wondering if he’s lying to me.

I don’t lie. Of course that’s not true – I say “I’m fine” when asked how I am, because nobody really wants the truth. But I don’t really lie. I think that, because I don’t, I don’t know how to recognize lying in others.

Will I ever be able to trust again? To not wonder if someone is telling the truth when they have a “business dinner” or “have to stay late at the office.” Or the lovely, “She’s just a friend.” I’m terrified that this will ruin any future relationship I have. That me not trusting the man I am with will drive him away.

How do you learn to trust again?

Who needs to know?

Elizabeth Edwards is being criticized for not telling anyone about her husband’s affair, for standing by him and choosing to stay in their 30 year marriage.

Am I the only one going, “…What?!”

Regardless of how you feel about what John Edwards did, this is still, at the root, a private matter.  He violated hertrust, much more than he violated anyone else’s.  If this were the CEO of Widgets, Inc and his wife, no one would give a shit.  The employees wouldn’t wonder if they could trust him, the stockholders wouldn’t sell off their shares because they don’t trust him.  His wife, and his wife alone, would be the only one able to forgive him his misdeed.  The only person’s trust he violated was hers, the only contract he violated was the one he had with her.

Yes, you can argue that Edwards violated The People’s trust in him as a representative of them and as a leader.  But that is something he did, not something she did.  Did she violate The People’s trust?  Absolutely not.  You can argue that he (and she) hid it from the public in order to avoid losing all political aspirations.  But consider yourself.  If your husband confided that he had an affair, and you discussed it and decided to forgive him, who would you tell?  Maybe your kids, if they were of an age that they could be told.  Maybe a few close friends, to discuss it.  A therapist, certainly.  But would you tell your husbands boss?  Or the people he manages?  Do you tell strangers on the street?  Do you take out an ad on a bulletin board to make sure the whole world knows?