I’ve “closed my eyes” to some critical issues involving men in my life. I knew Edgar was cheating and was the wrong man for me, but I stayed with him for 12 years. I wasn’t having a particularly ecstatic marriage, but I remained married for two decades. I can analyze my behavior—and have—from here to eternity, but I never really come up with completely understandable explanations for some of it. The way we act isn’t always easy to fathom, even when we pay therapists $200 an hour to try to help us figure it all out.
I’m astounded that Maria didn’t know about Arnold’s “love child,” but I guess I’m not surprised that she stayed, even if she did know. Maybe she stopped loving her husband years ago and figured it would hurt their young kids too much for her to leave. Perhaps she loved Arnold so much she couldn’t leave. Or maybe she was too preoccupied with her dad’s Alzheimer’s to spend much time thinking about her husband’s philandering.
I have a close friend whose husband led a double life (he also had a child with another woman) and she didn’t know a thing about it for years. Situations like this are more common than we think. It’s a sad state of affairs all around, literally and figuratively. At least Maria finally cast herself in The Terminator role.