by Chrysa Smith

Love your wife. Stay faithful. Avoid temptation.

That’s good advice for any married man, I’d say.  I wouldn’t want to be the wifely recipient of such ‘good’ news; ie, ‘Your husband is having an affair, and by the way, it’s a breach of national security and perhaps a crime!’ Excuse me? Get me the sherry and possibly the Bible. Because I’d be splattered on the floor, and dialing my neighborhood shrink.

Yet, I get it. I can actually see, in cases such as General Petraeus, why what happened, happened. Let’s analyze this to death, shall we? The media is certainly doing it—why not us here at NRFGP? So I’ll weigh in, too.

Remember when us moms said we’d never let our kids run around naked? go barefoot? play with toy guns? eat without washing their hands?  Ah-huh. I thought so. We’ve all been there, done that. The moral of the story? Never say never. So, hold that thought.

For those of us who are sanctimonious, black-and-white thinkers, let’s think about this for a moment: how many times have we been in a situation that is:  utterly isolating, removed from reality, too darn tempting, thrown at us? How many married moments have there been spent in anger? isolation? resentment? hurt feelings? How many married couples are but a shell, living life on automatic, but not really connecting? How many times have we made promises that we broke?

Now, don’t get me wrong. An affair is never a good thing. But I see how it happens. Put together any combination of the ill-fated emotions mentioned above, and voila! You’ve got a mess. It’s human emotion gone wrong, at it’s worst, at it’s most dysfunctional.

So, I’m not surprised. What I’m actually surprised about is the timing of this whole confession—right before testifying at a trial—but that’s a political conundrum for another day. Right now, I feel sorry for the General, for his wife, for the mistress, for her family. Because, unless the General is a pathological philanderer, he’s got some baggage—and something wrong or missing in his marriage. He’s not an awful guy—or just another guy. A bit misguided maybe—and certainly in need of some marital healing.

God bless them all. If only we could all be perfect—-all of those stones made for throwing might be used for some better purpose—like potted plants.