Cheating outside the classroom

A glimpse into the sometimes perverted male psyche.

Paige Vigil

Since I was old enough to start dating, my dad has warned about the âÄútigersâÄù of the world. He told me to wear turtlenecks to the beach and to remember that boys only have one thing on their minds. Of course, the 16-year-old version of me who was hearing this naïvely wanted to believe it was simply untrue. As I have become older, I have realized that my dad was partially right. As a grown woman, I find that most men I attract are emotionally unavailable; theyâÄôre either in a relationship or just coming out of one from which they still have strings. Baggage is acceptable âÄî everyone has some baggage they carry around âÄî but these men are different because the strings are attached. In my past experiences, these men have made it very clear to me that even though they are emotionally unavailable they are still physically available. In my version of a happy ending, my knight in shining armor never had another princess that he had to make it home to for dinner. Of course, it would be ridiculous to label all men âÄúcheaters,âÄù but their animalistic instincts are undeniable. Most women have caught a manâÄôs gawking eyes on her chest or felt the swift slap of a manâÄôs hand on her derrière. That is not to say that women arenâÄôt feeding into the cheating manâÄôs fantasy. Many women enter into an affair knowing that the man is unavailable. While we are all human, an athlete recently put himself on such a high pedestal that he believed his celebrity could save him from the consequences cheating can bring. The infamous golfer Tiger Woods (perhaps now more appropriately âÄúCheetah WoodsâÄù) has admitted to having embraced his own temptations outside of his marriage. It seems as if WoodsâÄô image changed overnight. Before his infidelities, he was not only known for his stellar golf skills but also his squeaky-clean image. Now it is no secret that since his marriage, Woods, along with a few of his male counterparts, have made themselves physically available to numerous women. Woods went on the record Friday with a public statement in which he apologized to his family, coworkers, friends and admirers. The apology seemed like a 14-minute insincere speech that was carefully crafted by his overzealous public relations representative. When considering the topic of cheating, I found it hard to grasp the concept of why someone would go looking for a different version of what they already have. To get a better understanding of this, I anonymously interviewed two male students who happen to be in very different situations. Bachelor No. 1 has a girlfriend, and bachelor No. 2 is newly single. Their opinions on the topic shared little similarity beside the fact that they both agreed that girls kissing other girls is not cheating. Bachelor No. 1 surprised me with his answers. He presented himself as the type of man that women can feel at ease around. He has never cheated, nor will he ever cheat, unless ESPN reporter Erin Andrews somehow finds her way to his bed. He explained to me briefly that the emotional and physical aspects of a relationship are equally important, so some men, when one is lacking, will look for it elsewhere. Bachelor No. 1 believes a man might cheat because he is looking for something better than what he has or is simply bored with his current situation. He believes that a woman can drive her man into someone elseâÄôs arms by not giving him enough space. He seemed to understand that all strong relationships are built upon the grounds of communication, because that is how he believes you can tell your partner is cheating. When the grounds of communication change, a red flag should go off. Bachelor No. 2 was significantly more crass. Being a newly single man, he admitted to being slightly out of practice with his pick-up techniques, which seemed modest to me, as he began talking. To this bachelor, cheating consists of kissing and anything beyond, yet dancing and cuddling seemed to remain acceptable. When asked if he has cheated, he admitted to one discrepancy but remained vague about the circumstances. He did tell his partner because the guilt was enough to drive him into admittance, yet to my surprise, she stayed with him. He explained that body language is usually a sufficient indicator of whether a woman is willing to bear the walk of shame the next morning. Having previously been a woman scorned, I have to admit that being cheated on is a real emotional drag. In the end, cheated was exactly how I felt. The vengeful side of me naturally wanted my revenge, but I have no regrets about walking away without bloody knuckles. Having been cheated out of a potentially good relationship, I know I will never jeopardize someone elseâÄôs relationship in a similar manner. Not only would I never want to be someoneâÄôs mistress, but I would also never wish upon someone else the empty feelings infidelity put me through. Clearly, everyone makes mistakes, but I do not believe that the saying âÄúonce a cheater, always a cheaterâÄù is true. I have witnessed many people cheat and truly learn from it. I like to think my dad is right about everything. The sports team he chooses always wins, and beets are delicious. He is truly one of my role models. Yet, I have to admit all boys arenâÄôt the one-dimensional sex machines my dad would like me to believe them to be. Cheating is wrong, but (some) men have more on their minds than what the perverted young male stereotype may allow. Paige Vigil welcomes comments at [email protected]