I'm not proud of this, but one day I awoke to the realization that I had become the embodiment of an American stereotype: the middle-aged husband who imagines something better over the next ridge.
It was as if I had been magically transformed from an invisible older man into a rock star whose company women craved. Of course that appealed to my ego. On a deeper level, though, it appealed to my need for stability in a world in which the love I wanted seemed impossible to find.
We are acutely aware, of course, that others outside our group often look at us askance. We have theories as to why, but mine boils down to this: They don't consider us legitimate. In a society that values–no, practically invented–love as the only valid basis for marriage, anything even suggesting other motives is suspect.