I had a horrible dream last night. And the night before (in which I dreamt my husband was having an affair with a friend of mine. Amazing how that ooooof to the gut can be conjured up so easily). Last night's dream wasn't about infidelity, not directly anyway. It was about trust...or lack of.
Yesterday I was interviewed by a lifestyle writer at the Toronto Star newspaper for an article she was writing on "when your spouse cheats". The writer found me via another article in which I was quoted that ran on the Web site BettyConfidential. In both cases, I requested anonymity. I've thought long and hard (gotta be careful using that phrase on a Web site about cheating!) about why I don't reveal my true identity (ie. real name. Believe me, you people hear know my true identity better than many of my closest friends). And I do it because my children don't know their daddy cheated on mommy. And they're young enough that they wouldn't really understand the nuances, they would likely only process the basics: Daddy lied. Daddy cheated. Ergo, lying and cheating maybe aren't so bad after all. Or maybe they are and Daddy is bad. Either way, not exactly the message I want to send.
And, I suppose I'm also protecting my husband, who would be humiliated by public knowledge of his transgressions. If he wasn't so contrite and so determined to "become the man [I] always though [he] was", I might not be so charitable. And, though there are days I'd love to pull away the mask and reveal to the world that I am all those things they think I am...but that I'm also a betrayed wife.
Though trust can often be a casualty of betrayal, I must be hard-wired to expect the best in people. (It's called either faith or idiocy, depending...). I trusted both reporters to not use my real name, to respect my choice to remain "Elle".
In my dream, I opened up The Toronto Star to not only discover that the reporter had used my real name, but that he had identified me as the author of – and she included the name of my most recent book. I felt numb...then, fortunately, woke up.
I turned to the online version of The Star and discovered that the reporter had protected my identity. And for that I'm very grateful.