Dating a married man is a bad idea. (Yes yes, I know. Duh. But before you get too comfortable on your high horse, don't assume you know why unless you've also had several unfortunate experiences with married men or women. Then ride 'em cowboy. My hat's off to you.)
Dunno why or how, but I have the tendency to attract married men. I chalk it up to the absence of anything remotely similar to a wedding ring. My friends theorize it's because I also have this tendency to be somewhat naive about a man's intentions. Either way, whatever. Married men love me.
My first experience was in college with one of my former instructors. We dated (after I was done with his class) for about 5 months. I don't remember why we broke up, but it had nothing to do with a wife, whom I didn't meet until 3 years later. She called me one day while I was at work.
"Is this S.G.Loughlin?" asked a heavily accented female voice.
"Yes. Who is this please?"
"I'm Ramon's wife. Have you contacted my husband lately?"
Shocked. Utterly shocked. I'm opening and closing my mouth silently like a fish.
"Uh. Yes? I guess I just emailed him a few days ago."
"Well I want you to stop. Never contact him again. He is my husband. You leave him alone or I will be forced to do something to you. Did he tell you I am his wife and I have his baby? Leave him alone..." Her English was good enough to threaten bodily harm but not quite good enough to explain how the hell she got my number or what the royal fuck?
According to her, they'd be married for the last five years but she had only recently come to the U.S. (they're both West African) and learned he had been having affairs. Mind you, she's calling me years after we dated, threatening physical violence, though I'm not sure she meant to actually threaten me given English was her second, maybe third, language. Either way, I'm not going to investigate the matter too closely.
I agree to never contact him again - "No problem! I'll be sure to lose his and your number as soon as we hang up! My apologies! Have a nice life!" - and hang up.
A few days pass. I'm walking home and Ramon passes me in his car. He pulls over, smiling and asks why I haven't called him back.
"Are you kidding me? Because your wife called me. She threatened to beat me up Ramon. Um, hello. You're married?"
He sings me a song and dance about her actually being a crazy ex-girlfriend who hacked his email account and contacted all his friends to find out if he'd been cheating on her..blah blah blah...it's not true...yada yada.
Whatever dude. What. Ever.
Epilogue: She called me about a year after that asking for help. Evidently she tested positive for a STD and he had left her and the baby high and dry. As an undocumented immigrant, she didn't know where to go or how to get help. I gave her the number of a Planned Parenthood, wished her luck and raced to get my own test. Thankfully he caught it after we had broken up (whew!) and I was clean. I changed my number and email address.
Stay tuned for Dating Married Men: Part II.