She was deceived. But she also cheated. Lived both sides. Then she knows: there are a thousand facets to infidelity and so many stories to tell. Here is his.

“I know that’s not right,” Nathalie repeats, sitting over a double espresso on a sunny Outremont patio just lately. “But it’s not one-dimensional. […] And I, I have known all the facets: I have been deceived, I have deceived, and I have been the mistress…”

With her long brown hair and her lively gaze, Nathalie looks like a strong woman. Determined. A go-getter, what. However, she drooled. Here: her very first lover, a “teenage sweetheart, with teenage sexuality, passionate”, died tragically, after 10 years together. She wasn’t 30 when her house of cards collapsed.

“My whole life story was written,” she recalls. We had a house, a child, we thought maybe we had another one. Everything had to be rewritten…” She does not expand on the subject, but confirms: “I found it hard. »

After this mourning, she dates a second man for a few years, a friend of a friend with whom she has a second child. “He was a super good guy, he was super good, he brought me a nice balance,” she sums up. In bed ? “Okay, but he was more of a friend,” she says. I don’t remember any great antics. Me, I prefer something more passionate…”

Besides, she cheated on him.

The lover in question, a co-worker (“handsome, tall, smelled good”), is also “engaged.” “I want this to lead to something,” she told him. And after a few months of “flirting” and other “on the run” antics, over dinner time, they both leave their respective spouses to make a middle way.

How long did their story last? Fifteen long years.

“I knew it wasn’t right, but I wasn’t happy, life is short,” Natalie said, speaking of her deception. I didn’t want to wall myself in a relationship that didn’t suit me. Or who no longer suited him.

And with the lover-turned-husband in a large blended family? “The first few years were great. We had a lot of spontaneity, a lot of love. We tried a lot of things,” she says, mentioning toys, positions and all kinds of erotic activities. “For me, sex is super important, it’s a way of communicating. Kissing too, it’s super important, it expresses a lot, these gestures are important, “she slips here. We will understand later why.

And then ? And then Mr. had health problems, combined with erectile problems. “I asked myself questions,” she recalls. Is it my fault? Am I not sexy enough? It was difficult to discuss it, and I understand. Except that as a bonus, the gentleman became “morose”, stupid with her, all smiles with the others. They had no more intimacy, and Nathalie ended up having an affair with another colleague. The affair did not last, and Nathalie began to doubt… her own husband. You follow ? “He was traveling a lot, she recalls, and we had no more sexuality. And now, while rummaging through her phone, she discovers lots of profiles on lots of dating apps. A sprawling double life. “It was so big, it hurts my heart. […] It had been years! […] He deceived me assiduously! […] Yes, me too, I cheated on him, she concedes. A few months was fun, but I quit! »

His sense of betrayal is palpable.

Still, at the end of the quarantine (let’s summarize), Nathalie faces it. Then leaves him. New dizziness. After all these years, she “felt liberated,” she says. “I decided to find myself. Who am I ? What do I like to do? »

She in turn subscribes to a site, but above all does not want to commit. “I had given enough, I felt like freedom. And it is on Ashley Madison (with the revealing extramarital slogan: Life is short, have an affair, Life is short, live an adventure) that she finds her happiness. “I don’t want one nights, she says, but friends with benefits […] And I want to understand why people do that. »

She ends up meeting two men, with whom she is friends to this day. And yes, she understood. “What they’re looking for is intimacy, not just sex,” she explains. They want to stick together, chat. […] These hugs, caresses, taking care of each other, communication, that’s what many couples lack… ” Here we are. Her eyes suddenly fill with tears. “If I had known that, I might not be here!” […] What can I do to make sure that doesn’t happen to me again? I still have this fear…”

We understand that his wounds are not yet healed, but that they are healing slowly. “These two guys really helped me,” confirms Nathalie, speaking of her two lovers. You know, when your husband flirts with lots of women, you think you’re ugly. These two guys made me feel beautiful and desirable. »

We can’t help it: does she feel guilty for being the mistress herself? “Yes and no, it’s hard to explain. I know it’s not right, at the same time I’m single […] and they gave me a lot. They gave me my confidence back! »

As proof: since then, Nathalie has tried a lot of things: debauchery (with two couples, “but I wouldn’t do it again”), seeing a friend, then another, and she finally wonders if she’s going to dare to commit again.

“I now understand some facets of the couple better. These small daily gestures that give pleasure. Guys find it important too,” she knows now. And she has no intention of forgetting it.