I write, therefore I cheat

Not so long ago an ex emailed me. If I had a list of People To Least Likely Hear From Ever Again, he would have been number one. Just seeing his name brought me to the brink of a panic attach. I vividly remembered the cold words of his last correspondence.

The years apart, had made him milder. He confessed he had Googled me.
“I see you have not published that novel about you and me. How are you doing?”

Hungry for his approval I responded. A warm and intimate email conversation followed. He excused himself for his past behaviour;
“I am sorry I lashed out at you before. Your presence and your writing made my girlfriend jealous. She didn’t like what was going on between us.”
“ So you two still together?” I emailed in between my neutral lines.
“ We are. But what can you do? We men simply have too much hormones to be faithful.”
Ah! There was a surplus of hormones and I was asked to audition as mistress. I lived at safe distance from him (check), was unconnected to his circle of friends (check), and the chemistry between us had not been put to the test in over a decade, but the first signs had been promising (checkcheck). Perfect material for an evening with wine, memories and love making. And if he played his cards right? Memories and wine would not even be necessary. My own 30+ set of hormones would work all the magic we need.

But before I had time to reply, the writer in me started to protest.
“No!” she yelled. “I don’t want him in my life again! Not his cold shoulder. Not his mixed signals. Not his stupid wish to keep everything a secret, and not tell.”
Now of course, a lover’s wish to be discrete is not stupid. I know that. But to a writer? It is very very inconvenient. If you want to date a writer whose novels are practically memoires, you have to come up with something good. You are, after all, robbing your beloved from her future material. Bidding should not start under:
“I will take care of you for ever, love you for ever, be there for you for as long as you need me “
Then, maybe, a writer will take your request for secrecy into consideration.
If you are offering Miss Broken Heart (me!), all the sex and intimacy you can squeeze in between your mandatory sms texts to home, you are not a nice guy.
But if you are seducing a novelist (me!), for late hour romance, early hour rendez-vous, or the days you can lie yourself to a “conference”, you are making a BIG mistake.
Writers, bloggers and novelists are the last women in the world you want to be having a secret affair with. We want to write about it. Because that’s what we do.

“Let’s not go there,” the novelist in me now answered his last email. “You never liked what I wrote about you in the past, you will certainly not like it anymore today. I am the last person in the world any man should have a secret affair with.”

“Can’t you just not write about it?” he inquired.

“Can you just not cheat?” I replied.

We all have our vices. The things we are so passionate about, we do them regardless of who gets hurt. When we’re in love, we melt, promise to do better, and stay straight for a little while. Romantic hearts make the craziest of promises. But in the end? He is a cheater. I am a writer. And the only thing we can do to protect the ones we love, is to be honest, insist on condoms, and to always use fake names.