I just scrolled through Facebook to find something silly to inspire me, and I found a friend’s post about hating women who steal men. So it must be a sign that I need to talk about relationships more. Or, it’s all a coincidence and any connections between the two are fabrications of my mind in order to justify something my subconscious needs to discuss more. Either way, here we are. So lets do it. Let’s talk about stealing partners, and more importantly, lets talk about how this is a falsified rhetoric to defend a person we care about.
When someone steals another person’s partner, they aren’t really stealing. I mean, certainly, it may be the best descriptive word to express the feelings that it inflicts on a person when their partner decides to leave them for someone else, but it isn’t stealing. Simply put, this is because stealing implies that whomever was “stolen” was an object of that person’s possession. That person is not an object, and, barring rape, it takes the decision of two people to have sex.
That being said, I don’t want to say I am advocating for men and women to cheat on each other. We’ve hashed and rehashed that conversation a few times, and it hurts quite a bit to be cheated on. Cheaters often feel guilty for cheating because they know how much it will hurt the other person. That being said, we can’t control the actions of people outside ourselves, so the reality is that we can’t really stop our partners from cheating. I mean, certainly, we can show them attention, and be available for them so that they don’t end up cheating on us for reasons related to feeling neglected, but even doing that doesn’t necessarily prevent them feeling inadequate.
Even less likely is our ability to control those we are not in a relationship with. The common person. They are the real wild card. I mean, let’s be honest, it’s quite possible for a random person to walk up to our partner—or ourselves, and kiss us out of the blue in front of our significant other. Completely out of our control. Should we be punished for that? I guess that depends on our reaction, but assuming we respond in a normal way—you know, freaking out because why is some random person coming up and kissing us—it seems unfair to react this way.
But lets assume someone succeeds in “stealing” our partner. Why do we blame the person who “stole” them, and not our partner? I mean, it was our partner’s decision. Personally, I think we blame them because we care about our partner. Most people who have cheated are not bad people. We like to paint them that way in order to cope with our own internal desperation and pains, but they aren’t. They just made a different choice, which was unfavorable to us. Which, for many people, is hard to accept, because they (typically) have a lot of good memories with that person, in which that person probably showed them a lot of love. So the idea that they would do a complete 180 and do something so hurtful seems impossible. In which case, we project these negative thoughts on the person who they went with. Which to me seems stupid. They were just acting in their own interests. I think you should hold whoever was your partner accountable.
Then again, maybe you should hold yourself accountable. Who knows? Relationships are complicated and often there is more going on than meets the eye. What do you think? Are there situations where you should blame the other person? Let me know!