I am always amazed at people who say they do not know how they ended up in an extra marital affair. Let us agree that it is not possible to slip and fall into a stranger’s birth canal. Is it? When things like this happen, you always see them coming. If they happen it is because you refused to get out of the way of oncoming traffic.
As working married people, the major temptations come from the work environment. However, distractions can come from other places, too.
For instance, that coffee place you frequent, your gym, your Rotary club – affairs are very rarely a result of an alien sighting.
So how do those of us who are serious about our marriage commitments guard our things? When you build a house, you will plan for a fence around it.
When you buy a brand new car, you will generally want to park it in a garage, a car port, or at the very least, have a cover to shield it.
When you get married, which I believe is worth more than the house or car, you must have a plan to protect it, and in this plan it is the little things that really matter.
Married people, a great starting point is your wedding ring. Don’t make silly excuses about why you cannot wear it.
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If you have time to put on cologne and earrings and wigs and neckties and all the other paraphernalia, then you have time to slip on your wedding ring.
It makes a statement that everyone should interact with you knowing that you are married.
In the use of your mouth and money, charity begins at home. Don’t compliment someone of the opposite sex before you say something nice to your spouse.
If you’re at the gym planning to tell Jack how symmetrical his shiny abs look, pick up the phone and pay your husband a genuine compliment.
Before you tell the intern how she’s looking good today, what did you tell your wife to kick start her day?
Affairs always begin in some kind of mutual appreciation, so better put those sweet words where you have an actual lifetime investment.
Carry photos of your family in your wallet – that is what those transparent little slots are for. If you can keep a photo of the president on your office wall, you can very well keep a photo of your family on your desk.
Some of you will now pretend this is unprofessional. No. You’re actually drawing the battle line between work and office.
After all, you pretend that you are working to support your family. What better way to keep the goal in sight than to have a photo of those hungry mouths you need to feed?
It is that much harder to grope your secretary’s bum when your three-year-old princess is smiling at daddy from the picture you took the day she joined nursery school.
Keep the hugging and touching of other people to a minimum. In fact, take a leaf from the Japanese and learn to bow politely. You never know where people’s hands have been.
When you marry someone, the only thing you can exclusively guarantee them is access to your body. If by the end of the day, your body has been hugged by workmates, pawed by your yoga instructor and squeezed out in a post-sauna massage, what exactly is still exclusive about your arrangement?
Sometimes, even with effort on your part, the world is still full of persistent perverts and weirdos. There are women who see married men as ‘secure’ and men who see married women as a challenge.
If you realise you are getting emotionally close to someone of the opposite sex, listen to your internal warning system and give yourself some distance.
Stop going for coffees and lunches and walks with just this one person. I’m sure your spouse would also appreciate going on a quick coffee date with you to hear about how your day went.
And finally, folks, just because it is on WhatsApp does not mean it isn’t cheating. If you’re sharing your daily schedule, dreams, hopes, jokes, photos and thoughts with someone else at all hours of the day, that person better be your spouse.