Monday, May 22, 2006

Attack of Conscience

Out for lunch with a friend. A group of guys walk in & sit at a nearby table. I notice her watching one of them with this look of wistful, puppy-like devotion on her face. She really likes him. We see him around a lot & everyone knows he's her crush. Am feeling kind of sad for her. She's been having a hard time & well, something good should happen to her. She needs it.

We get up for the buffet. I love their salad bar & am busy filling up my plate when I feel something touch my hair. I look up to find that my hair had been about to fall into a plate of hommos if the guy next to me had not pushed it out of the way. I tell him am sorry & thanks. He says no problem, that it's beautiful hair but not in his food. I smile because am thinking of Maxxed Out's comment about women on bread. Then I notice that the guy am talking to is one of the group of sitting with my friend's crush. In the next instant he's asking if we'd like to join them.

I almost said yes. It would give my friend a chance to establish contact with her long-time crush. There was a time when I wouldn't have thought twice. Just doing a friend a favor. On occasion I'd even approach a guy if my friend liked his friend. The rule is that it's ok to make a guy think you're interested in him if you're not. If it's actually your friend who is interested in him or in someone he's with. If you ARE interested in him then you NEVER approach him. You wait for your friends to do it for you. Who ever made these rules anyway?

But I tried to picture myself trying to explain this to my husband. He'd just hate it if I went through with this. Then I had another thought. The guy was clearly flirting with me, openly checking me out. Had he noticed my ring? If he hadn't then he would sooner or later & then what would he think of me for encouraging him?

So I said no thanks. And I went back to our table. Was going to tell her what happened then decided not to. Couldn't shake the feeling that I'd somehow let her down.

She dropped me off at home afterwards. Didn't have my car with me. I'd been having problems with my sound system so I'd let my husband take it to be sorted out. At home I had to deal with the stress of trying to find the maid something to do. She'd already spent all day scrubbing everything clean. Racked my brains a bit then I told her to do some laundary then gave her a shopping list & money & sent her off to the Co-op. Whew. That got her out of my hair for a while. Had my shower & changed then I sat down to finish some work I'd brought home with me.

Lost track of time until 10:00pm. Got up to pray maghrib & Isha. Called my husband to see why he wasn't home yet. He was out picking up my car. Got dinner started. He came home, gave me the car keys. I said thanks & gave him a kiss. No big deal.

But then this morning when I came downstairs & got into my car I had a shock. At first I thought I was in the wrong car! The car had been washed & cleaned inside out. The seat covers had been changed. That's something I've been wanting to do for ages. I had a new set of speakers. The tank was full. Even my empty box of tissues had been replaced with a new one.

I think it was the box of tissues that did it. I burst into tears. I felt so bad that at the time when he was busy doing all this for me I'd been busy thinking about letting some guy pick me & my friend up.

I actually got out of the car to go back upstairs when some inner voice of reason told me to get a grip. If I go running upstairs in tears & wake him & throw myself in his arms & tell him - which is what the visions in my head were telling me to do -he'll think am confessing to an affair. I'll make the whole thing look even worse.

So I got back in the car & drove myself to work. The minute I got in I ran into the bathroom & did some more crying. Then I washed my eyes with cold water & went back to my desk. Thought of calling him now that I was calmer. Told myself he won't pick up anyway. In the end I called & he didn't pick up. So I sent him sms saying thank you for my car etc.....

Got busy with work for a while but still felt down so in the end I went to M's office & blurted out the whole thing out.

Her advice was:

1) Don't tell him. He doesn't need to know. It will upset him & if he's been doing nice things for me then he doesn't deserve that.
2) Stop feeling bad. What matters is I didn't do it out of respect for his feelings.
3) Remember the suntan oil story. The same thing happened with him. A girl approached him & he passed her on to his friend. And he came & told me about it. Was he crying? No. So I should stop crying.
4) Think of something nice to do for him.

Good advice? I don't know. But I feel a bit better.

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21 Comments:

Blogger GC said...

Well I think it really depends on how you think your husband will take it. If he will take it in a joking manner, then you can tell him and laugh about it together. If he will get all upset, then you're better off keeping it to yourself, especially that nothing really happened and you were just trying to help your friend.

5/22/2006 01:11:00 PM  
Blogger Nerro said...

Can't get it..you didn't approach the guy at the end..mesh keda?? tab..the thought shouldn't bother ur husband..or if you think it might..then don't tell him...thinking about helping a friend is not a crime...but since you felt that it might annoy ur husband and stepped back..fa it is cool...

5/22/2006 02:27:00 PM  
Blogger Safiya said...

Your friends advice is very sound. Especially as if you tell him now, he will tell that you've been brooding over it and it will seem more then it is.

After all what did you actually do? Nothing. Some guy asked you to sit with him and his friends and you said no. End of story. You sound like an attractive woman so you are bound to be approached from time to time.

As for the car, you should see it as further proof that you've married a lovely man who is still capable of surprising you.

Re: the maid. Keep an eye out for a family looking for a maid. You will be able to personally recommend her which means that 1) You will have found the maid a more interesting job 2) You've found someone trustworthy for the family.

Sorry for such a long post!

5/22/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Blogger Mumbo Jumbo said...

I think you're like me- 3la rasek bad7a- I'm not sure if you use that expression in Moroccan. :)
I always feel the need to blurt out things un-necessarily, just to get them out in the open.

If it'll make you feel better, then just tell him. Bring it up in a 'by-the-way'... If it'll be awkward, keep it to yourself. After all, you did choose not to sit with them.

I think you did the right thing though. If the guys were Arab, most Arab guys are dirty-minded, so if they did see your wedding ring, they might've thought you were interested in some hanky-panky.

5/22/2006 06:02:00 PM  
Blogger programmer craig said...

Hi LouLou,

There's nothing really wrong with a guy flirting with you (though if he saw you were married and gave it a shot anyway, he's a sleazeball) but I think it would bother your husband a great deal if he knew you were even thinking about encouraging it, for whatever the reason.

I really think you should watch out, and try to change the way you think about such things. If you're feeling guilty about something, your husband will eventually notice, and he'll start wondering what it is. And then he'll remember that you were acting "strange" in the past(even if he was just imagining it), even years later. And believe it or not, guys do talk to each other too. If somebody tells your husband that he saw a guy hitting on you and it looked like you were receptive, he'll start churning it around and try to come up with all the other times you were acting weird for no apparrent reason. He may suspect something is going on, even if you haven't done anything wrong. Trust is very important in a marriage, and I can tell you from firsthand experience: once it's gone, it never comes back.

You didn't do anything wrong, and I'm not saying you did. I'm just saying you should be careful :)

Anyway, I agree with all that advice. Don't plant any seeds of doubt, when there's no reason too.

5/22/2006 08:27:00 PM  
Blogger Alluring said...

Im just curious; why do you always seem to do things that you tend to regret later?

My advice, think before you execute your actions. You will save yourself the guilt trips.

Back to the post, you didn't actually talk to the guy, don't torture yourself for a thought that might've been.

5/22/2006 09:05:00 PM  
Blogger Twosret said...

Nothing happened Loulou to worry about really it is not a big deal.

Don't worry about it.

T.

5/22/2006 09:44:00 PM  
Blogger Gilgamish said...

yea i agree, nothing happened, so no worries, it is not like you guilty of anything, I think it bottomed down on how to help your friend and you were confused, I think its just takes time when you've acquired a new thing and thats marriage for now.
You are just used to something and now you have to learn a new thing.

confusion and nothing at all.

5/22/2006 10:04:00 PM  
Blogger moi said...

Hey, you did the right thing at the restuarant, and there's no need to tell him. What he did with the car was really sweet and you should def do something nice back :)

5/22/2006 10:55:00 PM  
Blogger Leilouta said...

Loulou, you're being too hard on yourself.

If I were you, I would've talked to those guys, and told my husband about it. "Le plus beau" though is that he wouldn't mind at all.

As long as they trust us, they know we'll never deceive them.

5/22/2006 11:25:00 PM  
Blogger programmer craig said...

Well, I re-read my comment, and I think what I said is all true, but I made this little thing sound like doomsday. It's not. Your husband has nothing to worry about, LouLou, and this post is the proof of that :)

5/22/2006 11:27:00 PM  
Blogger forsoothsayer said...

lou, every time i read your blog i think how you're a sensible and smart woman except when it comes to your husband :)

sure, your husband wouldn't have liked you to join those guys even if it was for your friends, even if he did it with his friend (he sounds like super Double Standard Man, but i guess most guys would also be displeased). but it's not a betrayal for u to have thought about it while he was cleaning your car. nehda. i actually did the same thing for a girlfriend of mine, and it worked out and my boyfriend wasn't mad...then again we're not married and he's not egyptian.

5/23/2006 12:37:00 AM  
Blogger programmer craig said...

then again we're not married

:)

he's not egyptian

When it comes to love, I think people are all the same.

5/23/2006 12:46:00 AM  
Blogger Libyan Violet said...

Loulou, stop torturing yourself, you did nothing. However, it is too late to share the moment with hubby though , if you did it immediately it would have be ok , talking the morning after though is not !
and that is my humble opinion.

5/23/2006 01:43:00 AM  
Blogger Alina said...

Lou, you are too hard on yourself! You've made the right choice and at times we all act like that: think of helping our friends first and only then think of the consequences on ourselves, then blame ourselves...Also, if you tell K, it might upset him, but if you need to and he is the wonderful husband I think he is, he will understand and get over what upsets him in this small incident.

Either way you choose, stop blaming yourself that much!

5/23/2006 12:56:00 PM  
Blogger LouLou said...

Global,

"If he will take it in a joking manner, then you can tell him and laugh about it together."

No way. He will get upset.No doubt about it. I can laugh over things like that when they happen to him but never the other way around.

Nerro,

"Can't get it..you didn't approach the guy at the end..mesh keda??"

I didn't approach him. He approached me. So you would have done it?

Safiya,

"you should see it as further proof that you've married a lovely man who is still capable of surprising you."

I did! It's just that under the circumstances further proof of that made me feel maybe I didn't deserve him.:(

Mumbo Jumbo,

"I always feel the need to blurt out things un-necessarily, just to get them out in the open."

Actually I have trouble opening up with most people. That's why I need a blog. Some people are exceptions. He's one of the them. Although marriage is teaching me to be a bit more secretive with him than I used to be.

Craig,

Ok it's official. You ARE an alarmist & not just in politics.:)

Actually some of the things you mentioned did pass through my mind. It's the first time something like this came up since I got married. So I needed to stop & consider how the parameters of the situation might have changed.

I don't expect it to come up very often. After all at my age most of my girlfriends are already either married or seriously involved. It's not like when we were younger & we thought a girls' night out was wasted if at least one of us didn't get hooked up with some eligible guy.:)

Alluring,

"Im just curious; why do you always seem to do things that you tend to regret later?"

Two reasons why you would always do things that you later regret:

1) You have the kind of personality that cannot allow any event of any significance to pass by without revision & analysis followed by wishing you could go back & do things better.

2) Some situations you can't come out of without regrets. This is why I chose the title Attack of Conscience. On the day it happened I felt like a horrible person with no morals because I didn't help my friend. The next day I felt like a horrible person with no morals because I even thought of helping my friend. I would have felt bad no matter what I did.

Twosret!

Welcome back. One of your rare guest appearances or here to stay this time?

Gilgamish,

"You are just used to something and now you have to learn a new thing. "

You're right. This marriage stuff needs some practice it seems.

Moi,

Hi there. Nice to see you here.:)

"What he did with the car was really sweet and you should def do something nice back :) "

I'm thinking, I'm thinking. Any ideas?

Leilouta,

"Loulou, you're being too hard on yourself."

Yes that's a bad habit I have.

forsooth,

"lou, every time i read your blog i think how you're a sensible and smart woman except when it comes to your husband :)"

Woman you are one tough cookie! Are you always smart & sensible when you're in love? Everyone knows am an emotional wreck around him. And everyone promised me marriage would help me get over him. I guess it takes time. His fault really for refusing to give me a baby to divert some of that emotional energy.:)

Libyan Violet,

"However, it is too late to share the moment with hubby though , if you did it immediately it would have be ok , talking the morning after though is not !"

Telling him is not an option anymore I know. Who needs the headache?

Alina,

"Lou, you are too hard on yourself!"

I know, I know. It's my rising sign. Virgo. But I will try to improve. I promise.

5/23/2006 07:01:00 PM  
Blogger Twosret said...

Loulou,

Your blog, Lone Highlander girl, SM is always on top of my list :) I'm trying to keep up and stay in touch despite of the move and all the crazy busy life I'm leading lately.

Promise to stay longer this time :)

5/23/2006 09:06:00 PM  
Blogger Nerro said...

I wouldn't have done it for the reason eno I learned the hard way..that some way or another I will end up being the bad guy :D Can do it for a male friend though..
Bas if I am in ur place I wouldn't do it if I felt the guy is hitting on me..

5/23/2006 11:30:00 PM  
Blogger Cliche~ said...

telling him gives it too much importance...

while in reality..its is really unimportant and insignificant, right?

5/24/2006 03:11:00 AM  
Blogger Mumbo Jumbo said...

Loulou,
"Actually I have trouble opening up with most people. That's why I need a blog. Some people are exceptions. He's one of the them. Although marriage is teaching me to be a bit more secretive with him than I used to be."

I think you misunderstood what I meant. I meant that when I'm feeling guilty about something, even when I didn't do anything wrong, or when I feel that not saying something would be as bad as lying, I tend to blurt it out and confront the person.

I don't blurt out things in general to people though. I also have a problem opening up, which is why I blog, too- to vent about things I cannot always speak about. :)

5/24/2006 12:42:00 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

LouLou..
It is a great thing that we dont get judged by our thoguhts or we would have been all guilty of being the worse persons ever..
You thought, decided and did the right thing.. Be happy about it..
Take care

5/25/2006 09:21:00 AM  

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