Back in the days when women were men’s chattel, a law allowed husbands to sue the man who caused his wife to cheat on him. Throughout history we find numerous ways adulterers were dealt with, such as being stoned to death, or being hanged. And women weren’t the only gender punished for adultery. Even fornication with another man’s wife could result in harsh physical punishments.
But as time goes on, we find adultery being more and more normalized. A row of books normalizing female promiscuity can be found in your local library or bookstores, as increasingly, women find the idea of being a loyal wife disgusting. Songs celebrate women’s lack of loyalty, such as the one that goes “these hoes ain’t loyal.” Imagine what society would be like if we changed that to “all the virtuous ladies please stand up, please stand up!” A married woman today is more than a wife, she is someone to be known for her… body—wait, no, she should be known for her creativity, her humanity, and everything else she does that is awe-inspiring, as if women in the past were not known for being anything other than being a wife.
Although even some conservative women do not wish to be a man’s property anymore, they will happily treat their man as property in the event of a divorce and sue for alimony. Men today are treated as if they are property, with three out of four divorces being initiated by women, and women receiving almost all the alimony payments (this is changing, but the most current statistic I have found suggests 97% of alimony payments go to men, despite women apparently being breadwinners in 40% of households).
So what is a man to do if he believes in the sanctity of marriage, but is approached by his wife with the proposition for divorce? And to add insult to injury, only after further investigation, he discovers that she was cheating on him. Now, he not only owes her money, she can live in his house, and continue to demand more from him. A woman can get away with cheating on her husband today, without being penalized, and even be rewarded. There is only one word for this: weakness.
Thankfully for the man in North Carolina, he was able to sue the man who tempted his wife and formed a relationship with her, which could possibly save him from the stresses of financial destitution. The law tort (torts are laws that serve to protect individuals who suffered harm) that allows this is called ‘alienation of affection.’ It stipulates that a married person can sue someone who was responsible of causing the married person’s spouse to withhold affection from them, and essentially, steal them away.
To successfully sue, the claimant must show three things: first, that there was a marriage with love and affection; secondly that the love and affection was destroyed; and thirdly, that a third party’s wrongful intentions was responsible for the destruction of the marriage.*
*Consult with a lawyer for accurate legal information. I took this from legal websites I found.
Critics of the law state that it comes from an antiquated time, where women were considered men’s property—or chattel legally speaking—and that it fails to uphold the sanctity of marriage as it was intended, while taking away personal responsibility on the part of the person who got cheated on for the affair. This law has a basis in 17th century English common law. It’s not really the “affections” that the law protects against, but the loss of “consortium,” or the right to companionship, sex and affection from your spouse (it applies to men and women). Do you feel that you—whether you’re a man or a woman—have the right to your partner’s loyalty? Should loyalty be a right?
In this law, the loss of affection was caused by a “criminal conversation,” another phrase for adultery. For a detailed overview of this law, please see this resource. In this post, I will briefly cover the man’s case and then explain how he could have taken personal responsibility for what happened, and then conclude with my opinion on the law.
Howard, from North Carolina, felt that a man whom he believed was a friend, intentionally destroyed his marriage. This man regularly came to their house and they all had dinner together. But he found out after she initiated the divorce that he would visit their home when he was away at work.
“It was like someone calling you and telling you that a family member had just suddenly and tragically died” he said.
Howard told CNN that he hired a private investigator after learning about his wife’s intention to divorce, and that’s when he discovered that she was adulterous. He’s one of many men who find out after the fact that their ex-wife wants a divorce because she’s now sleeping with another man. This man was a colleague of hers from work.
“I believe in the sanctity of marriage. Other families should see what the consequences are to not only breaking the vow to whatever religion you subscribe to, but also your legal responsibilities.”
Although Howard won the lawsuit, he won’t see the money for a while, if ever, as in many of these cases, the claimant just wins a piece of paper, as one of the lawyers in the video above cites as a reason why this law should be abolished. There are currently six states where this law is still in effect: North Carolina, Hawaii, South Dakota, Mississippi, New Mexico, Utah and New Mexico.
Howard believes in the sanctity of marriage, and it sounds like he put faith in the faithfulness of his wife. But many women who go to work start to form relationships with their colleagues or male bosses. Men and women cannot be friends in most cases, and sexual tensions naturally can arise in the workplace when two people decide they kind of like talking to each other and are of the opposite sex. It could be that she cheated on him because she wasn’t getting the proper attention from her partner, but infidelity happens in happy relationships too (I’m not sure yet how “happiness” is defined and will update you on this finding in a future post).
Whether or not his wife cheated because she wasn’t satisfied with Howard, here are two things he could have done differently to prevent this outcome.
1. Check Her Phone and Ask For Transparency
As I mentioned in this video, a man should not hesitate to check his woman’s phone or simply ask for more transparency. All you have to do is open your mouth and be vulnerable enough to seem insecure for a moment. What she thinks is irrelevant. Remember, YOU are the leader. The amount of suffering that could have been prevented if men demanded the right to loyalty and did not tolerate anything less is immense, but unknown, as men suffer silently on this issue. They want to trust her, and protect her, and years down the line, get comfortable and do not suspect their wife is anything but a virtuous woman.
Indeed, in ancient times, it was believed women could either lead men astray, or support men in their mission by being virtuous. Although this is considered misogynistic today, men need to set clear boundaries and lead women instead of thinking they are capable of leading themselves. Because in ancient societies, even if women were virtuous, it was the patriarchy leading them. Without that enforcement, the result is very clear as we can see today.
Men who demand loyalty and tolerate nothing else (I believe all healthy men demand this at their core) will be motivated to be involved in his woman’s life outside their marriage—if she has one, as so many women today do. This includes knowing about her friend group. Are there male friends in this group? Should you invite one of her male colleagues to your house for a friendly family dinner? Should you inquire about the nature of the text messages between her and this male colleague? And should she even have his phone number? What about on social media? Do your friends, including your best friends, follow her and interact with her on social media? It seems far from uncommon for a man’s best friend to have an affair with his woman. You should be just as transparent with her about your relationships outside your marriage with other women as well.
Howard could have been braver. He was too kind, and too unsuspecting. And tragically—a woman will never tell you this—but being that way can cause her to seek fulfillment outside your marriage due to dissatisfaction. She will however tell you that she doesn’t like it when you’re controlling or suspecting of her, but what she feels inside is your masculinity and is turned on by your demands for her utmost loyalty. So make sure to think the opposite of what she reveals verbally on this matter, and you will find that she will flip-flop on the issue eventually due to her nature.
Howard was so meek, he hired a private investigator to figure out what was going on instead of point blank just asking her. I was very disappointed to read that this man didn’t have the courage to confront his wife. A man who cannot confront his wife will not be respected by her. Many might ask where I get my opinions from. Well, I have female readers who are passionate about this subject, and they have told me this. Two have even DM’ed me on Instagram telling me that they felt that when their man isn’t brave enough to stand up to them and put her in her place, they feel like he never loved her.
I know it’s mind-boggling to consider this, but women take a lot of time to deal with. They nag, are inherently demanding of your time and resources, and on top of that, want you to stand up to them, but when you do, will temporarily nag that you did, even though they like it on some level. It’s incredibly frustrating sometimes to manage her. It’s like another job. But if you’re in a relationship, you have to be committed to put in that time and deal with this reality. The point here is to be involved.
2. Weight Loss
Honestly, the first time I saw this man on video, I thought to myself “no wonder she cheated.” This man is at least 80 lbs overweight, if not 120 lbs. Although some women are OK with beer bellies, as when she is on top she can potentially stimulate her clitoris with it, women are not attracted to it especially when they are still in their reproductive years (roughly between the ages of 14 to 45).
Howard has a deep and masculine voice, but perhaps his wife was not attracted to him because of his weight, and felt sexually unfulfilled. If you are a traditionally-minded person, then you should be reminded of this verse from the Bible:
“But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband.The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband”(1 Corinthians: 2-3)
Here, Paul writes that it is a duty to have sexual relations with your partner, and continues: “do not deprive each other” (1 Corinthians 7: 5). The meaning of this exact passage is hotly debated among Christians, and I liked the perspective I found here, and wasn’t so sure about the one I found here, because it was written by a woman who wears a suit and has a feminist haircut who argues that men shouldn’t demand sex from their wives if they refuse to do the same things that he wants. She also is giving advice to a man, which is forbidden Biblically as women are in no position to be an authority to men.
Nevertheless, the summary of this part of the Bible is that sex is a blessing and a husband and wife should enjoy it together. But this passage also calls into question not having sex before marriage, because what if people can’t make sex enjoyable to their partner after marriage? Maybe they would find out if a partner is sexually compatible* with them if they ha premarital sex with each other and in previous relationships. It’s common for a man to have a higher sex drive than the woman and this discrepancy ending up being a source of contention among couples, and it would be hard to know that before having sex.
*I don’t believe compatibility can be sexual. Compatibility has to do with the soul, not fleshy things.
You just have to “figure it out” somehow, and this may be one reason why it definitely is a struggle to save sex until marriage and not be lured by Satan, and then continue to enjoy it for years to come with each other while balancing all the conflicts that arise within a marriage. However, I believe that struggle is for the best, because the opposite approach leads to far greater disaster. I say “greater” because many former Christians, like Joshua Harris, openly denounce purity culture, and it’s important for Christians and other traditional-minded people to consider the struggles and challenges purity culture puts people through. However, from watching Harris’ documentary it seems as if people took Joshua’s book way too seriously and treated it as its own Bible rather than one man’s opinion, and that’s what really led to their problems, rather than anything specific to Christianity.
Nevertheless, we could interpret these passages to say “don’t be fat and ugly as a man because then you won’t be performing your marital duty properly.” Although there is more pressure on women to be fair and beautiful, if one of our marital duties is to prevent fornication by having sex with our spouse and not deprive each other of it, we should keep ourselves at a healthy body weight. It’s also good for us anyway, so there’s no downside.if one of our marital duties is to prevent fornication by having sex with our spouse and not deprive each other of it, we should keep ourselves at a healthy body weight. Click To Tweet
Further, we could interpret getting fat, unsightly, and losing sex appeal as “deprivation” in a sense. Although you can still have sex and fulfill this marital duty despite being 100 lbs overweight as a man, it might not be as fun for your partner and you could be depriving them of a much better time. This could happen in a number of ways.
For one, women by nature are soft and men are hard. Our erections are hard, and so too are our bodies when we are in shape (15% body fat is enough), whereas, when women are in shape and healthy their plump breasts, buttocks and abdomen are still soft and supple due to naturally having more body fat. When a man is overweight, he becomes soft physically, and this can be perceived during sex with her eyes closed.
Secondly, if he is as overweight as Howard, his stamina in the bedroom might suffer, unless she is always on top. Even if she is on top, he could develop erectile dysfunction if his overweight is causing circulation issues (chronic inflammation and atherosclerosis). And in that case, he would fail to perform his marital duty. And thirdly, his face won’t look as sexually appealing. Women look at a man’s face to uncover important cues about his masculinity, and when you have a face as bloated as Howard’s, women aren’t as interested in sex.
I believe this law tort is an important remnant of our past, and men who wish to marry American women should move to one of the six states where the law is still enacted. You might have a great job now but you could be richer if you lived somewhere that protected you financially from divorce. However, if the man or woman you’re suing has no money, you won’t benefit as much as you’d like, but your former partner certainly won’t benefit as much as he or she could in other states, especially if they would never have to pay alimony. If they want to buy a house and move in together, their credit score will be impaired now if the money owed causes your ex’s new partner to be in debt.
Considering that most alimony payments go to men, even if women cheat, I find that this law offers men like Howard protection from financial destitution and potential health problems associated with it (which could be costly) and it is a very good thing. I think all 50 states should enact this law again and that we must find a healthier balance between women’s liberation and women as men’s chattel.
One flaw of this law is that it takes away personal responsibility. But one flaw of not having the law is that it takes away responsibility from the cheating partner, especially if she is a woman and can benefit from alimony payments from her former husband. I think society would be better if this law applied only for breadwinners of a household whose ex’s demand burdensome alimony payments. Or, there should be a law to cancel alimony payments to cheating spouses.
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