The thrill of cheating

The thrill of cheating

MASERU – “MEN are like dogs and as women we have to accept this.”
These are the words of ’Mamolemo (not her real name). Despite her husband, a taxi operator, being a serial cheater, the Maseru woman has not mustered the strength to leave him.
Instead, she seems to have found ways of tolerating his philandering ways and the anguish they bring.

“He even flirts with the children that he transports to school. He doesn’t even love these women and girls. It is lust,” said the soft spoken woman in her late thirties.
She is not alone in this debacle: to stay or to leave. Many Basotho women are trapped in loveless marriages, often hanging in there due to cultural, economic or social reasons. Others remain in abusive marriages “for the sake of the children.”

In ’Mamolemo’s case, all was well until her husband’s breakthrough in the taxi business. As her husband’s business flourished, life at home became more miserable.
“He was now making a lot of money. Unfortunately it made him lose all sense and give less attention to the family,” she said.
Before the taxi business took off, he would bring his entire earnings home where the couple would work on the budget together.
Not anymore.

“He has changed completely. He is a totally different person. At times he tells me that business is bad when in fact he would have spent money on his adulterous affairs,” ’Mamolemo said.
Yet, she is sticking with him. Trying to find a “better man” is like looking for a needle in a haystack, she said.
“It is my strong belief that men are like birds of one feather that fly together,” she said. “They think and act alike.”
“Those who appear to be the good ones do so because they are still locked in poverty and cannot afford extra cash to fund extra-marital affairs,” she said.

For men involved in the shenanigans, it is all about fun – never mind the anguish it causes at home.
Thabiso Monare, who boasts of multiple concurrent sexual partners, said he is allured by the non-committal nature of his extra–marital relationships.
“You just take someone and have sex with her. Then you part ways. There is no commitment in such adventures,” said Monare.

Monare says some men go out in search of extra-marital affairs because their wives do not want to try new sex styles.
“Women ask a myriad of questions if the husband wants them to try out different sex styles,” said Monare, also explaining that he avoids “serious or steady” relationships outside his marriage.
“Such relationships are too demanding. These women would want you to text them in the morning to say ‘hi’. If I fail to do that then they get angry,” he said.

“Most men do not want to owe allegiance to anyone,” Monare said.
Tankiso Moletsane, a taxi driver in Maseru, claims some men simply fall to seduction.
“Women love cars more than anything,” he claimed, without providing evidence.

Moletsane says such women become hostile or even take to mockery of a man who ignores the advances.
“So they are the ones pushing us to do this,” he said.
Almost half (50.3 percent) of the marriages in Lesotho collapse due to adultery, according to a recent report by the Bureau of Statistics.
Those who choose to stay such as ’Mamolemo, the mental agony can be heart-rending.
There are health risks too.

“What adds salt to the wound is that some men do not even practice safe sex while indulging in adulterous relationships. You would be staying at home, respecting your husband and the family at large but the husband would behave like a teenager out there.”
However, infidelity is not limited to men, as evidenced by testimonies of women who spoke to thepost.

Some do it as a form of revenge. For others it is about the sex or money they would be missing at home.
Libuseng says she is in it for the money.
“Nothing makes me happier than money,” said the married 35-year-old who is employed at a car dealership in Maseru. She said the couple’s combined earnings barely cover the family basics.
The solution for Libuseng: get a blesser.

“I had no option but to engage in extra-marital affairs to get extra cash. It is not that I love these men I have affairs with,” she said, defending her actions and blaming the country’s deteriorating economic situation.
Libuseng said she does not even enjoy the sex with her partners outside marriage
“Poverty is what has pushed me into these types of relationships. I am short of taxi money right in the middle of the month yet I need to go to work. My lover chips in,” she said.

Sometimes it is all for the luxury that the husband cannot afford to finance.
“We are the kind of creatures that enjoy shopping all the time. If husbands do not give their wives money, the wives would go out and search for it,” she said.
“I don’t think I am alone in this web.”

Majara Molupe

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