Infidelity; Why We’re Obsessed.

This post is inspired by my discovery (from where else, the Twitter-sphere) that Kristen Stewart had an affair with 41-year old Rupert Sanders. The married director of Snow White and the Huntsman and its lead actress BOTH cheated on their respective partners, despite a 19 year age gap. Several things about this situation are shocking but the statements released by the pair both refer to their love for their respective partners, and their despair at the hurt the situation has caused. Sanders is married (with two young children) to Liberty Ross, who has been seen in Vogue. And, although the couple are notoriously private, it was confirmed in 2010 that Stewart was dating her Twilight co-star Robert Pattinson – a position coveted by many around the globe. Is the upset the pair claim to be devastated about caused by the actual situation, or just the discovery?

I think it’s probably a weakness of mine to not be able to think of this from the other side. In one respect, I understand the excitement of developing feelings for someone, and getting involved in something new. It’s one of the best rushes in the world. But on the other hand, despite doubts I’ve had with my relationship at times, I have never considered any kind of infidelity as an option. In my mind, the important thing in a relationship is – as well as love – you need commitment and patience.

I’m bad with change. My boyfriend knows that I’ve had issues when the ‘honeymoon period’ is over, and I miss the initial excitement you get when you are first dating – when you get a text, look forward to seeing each other, feeling your feelings change and develop. But once you get through that, I’ve found the relationship can be just as amazing, or even better than before. So maybe this is the reason that some people decide to cheat on a partner, to reclaim this rush?

The two in question were in longer term relationships – Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson have been dating for approximately 3 years, and Rupert Saunders has been married for seven years. But they don’t seem to have expressed doubts about their relationship of any time: in particular, Stewart and Pattinson have been seen expressing their love more publicly recently, and in their statements to the press, both Stewart and Saunders both declared their love for their partners.

If it’s not a question of love, then what? The pressure of not spending enough time together, due to hectic celebrity lifestyle? I suppose that I cannot possibly understand this, but in my head, there can just never be an excuse. Stewart said in her statement; ‘This momentary indiscretion has jeopardized the most important thing in my life, the person I love and respect the most, Rob. I love him’. Maybe it’s simply to do with the different thought processes of individuals. But for me, cheating is one of the worst ways to disrespect somebody. A betrayal of trust can hurt somebody for a long time, I’ve learned this much. To consider somebody the most important thing in your life, to me, means to think of them in almost everything you do. Maybe for some, this is not the case.

As a society, we gorge ourselves on details of celebrity culture – cheating, new relationships, marriage, divorce. This is scandalous in terms of magazine fodder: Kristen Stewart has been portrayed in the media as quiet, private, even moody, but above all committed to her relationship. We want to be shocked, and these situations fill readers with glee. A popular weekly magazine features a column about a real life affair: this is popular with the readers, both shocked and appalled, as well as egging the woman on.

But maybe it’s simply nobody’s business: why publicly apologise  for an affair when the only person you should be apologising to is the person you cheated on? No matter which way you look at it, this is a situation to be played out between the people involved. I can judge all I want, as personally I could never forgive cheating. Then, celebrity lifestyles seem to be a type of ‘hyper reality’ where everything that they experience is exaggerated – they feel invincible and nobody will ever say no to their demands. Any devastation caused in this situation rests entirely with them, and finally being held accountable may make them feel very human again. Maybe the media scrutiny will bring back their consideration of others feelings. But then, that could be me just making judgmental assumptions again.


10 thoughts on “Infidelity; Why We’re Obsessed.

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