Caught In The Lie
I’ve been single for a couple years after getting out of a crummy long term relationship and had been casually dating from various internet sources. Mostly, things had gone well but I hadn’t really found a guy to get serious about. I started talking to a fellow I’ll call Poltroon. This guy seemed normal and we had a lot in common. Our electronic communications were engaging and a lot of fun. I had a few things going on that prevented us from meeting in person for the first few weeks but he was really understanding about it. Our first date, over coffee, lasted over five hours. Good chemistry and good conversation abounded. We just really clicked and things were off and running.
Poltroon and I were talking every day via email, text, or phone calls. We were both busy people and got together a little less than weekly, but it suited us both just fine. We talked about everything. He very clearly stated that he was single, never been married and had no children. I’m 30 and he’s 41, so while that is not entirely expected, it didn’t really raise any red flags either. He was a little evasive about previous relationships but I chalked it up to not wanting to dig into the nitty, gritty, drama of a bad relationship too soon. I feel similarly and don’t like to put all that stuff out there until I feel secure in how it’s going to be received. I didn’t push too much but I did feel like there was something he wasn’t telling me. We had been seeing each other and talking every day for over a month when MVWD struck.
We planned a lunch date for a weekday that we both had available. It, like every other date to this point, was great. We were finishing up lunch and discussing going for a walk in a popular local park that we both wanted to check out. I started getting phone bombed by a local number that I didn’t recognize. He stepped away to use the restroom and I decided to take the call in case someone had changed a phone number or there was some other emergency. The person blowing up my phone introduced herself as Mrs. Poltroon and wanted to know: did I know that he was married and had three kids?
At that moment, I felt like someone could have knocked me over with a feather. I was completely shocked and just couldn’t have anticipated this turn of events. Poltroon returned to the table while I was speaking to his wife. I was saying things like, “I had no idea Poltroon was married,” “I apologize for this and I absolutely don’t date married men,” and “No, I won’t be dating a married man now or in the future.” He stood there speechless as I got off the phone, picked up my purse, and walked out of the restaurant to ask him a couple of questions regarding his marital status. He sheepishly followed me outside, if there’s ever an actual expression that could be described as “hangdog” this was it.
I asked him the two most relevant questions at that moment: “Are you married?” and “Do you have three kids?” As one would expect from a man called Poltroon, he reluctantly admitted to having three kids (which he had previously denied existing) but that he and his wife were divorced. My response to that was that I would need to see a divorce decree to verify that statement. He then amended his statement that they were separated but “in the process.” In my opinion being separated is still married.
At that moment, I watched in utter shock as a car zoomed over a sidewalk and drove into the building next door to the restaurant parking lot, about 100 feet from where we were standing. I think my exact words were, “What the hell is happening today!? Unbelievable.”
Poltroon apologized for causing me trouble and that he would deal with his wife. The coda to MVWD is that his wife continued to call and text me for the next 48 hours. I started to feel seriously threatened and contacted Poltroon to see if he could intervene. He was very apologetic for the episode and offered the kinds of explanations that one might expect about being separated and not wanting to bring drama into my life. At this point, I couldn’t care less about either of them and just wanted to be left alone. I don’t need a lying poltroon or his harassing harpy of an (ex?) wife bothering me. I’ve maintained all of her phone and text messages in case the authorities need to be contacted.