Paint in your mind the stereotypical picture of a young couple in the hospital preparing for the birth of their first child. What’s the guy doing? He might be standing close, holding his distressed partner’s hand and offering words of encouragement. Maybe he is a few feet away from the bed, watching anxiously as doctor’s work with her. The point is: He is there.
When Sarah Pearce gave birth to her first child several years ago, her partner, Chris Bennett, was nowhere to be found. He wasn’t even at the hospital. He was out cheating on her.
“I was in shock,” Pearce told Daily Mirror. “I just felt sick, and later so angry. He’d cheated on previous partners but always reassured me that I was the only serious partner he’d been faithful to. I believed he’d never cheat on me.”
Pearce found out about her partner, Bennett, and his extracurricular activities after his absences from important events grew too frequent to ignore. She eventually logged onto his Facebook and noticed an unfamiliar woman commenting on many of his posts. When she clicked on the woman’s profile, she saw a picture of the woman with Bennett. The photo’s caption read “Me and my guy.”
Stunned and hurt, she arranged a meeting with the woman. During the meeting, Bennett’s fling told her that she thought Bennett was single. When Bennett spoke of Pearce, the woman said, he referred to her as a crazed ex.
“We both cried and were devastated at how badly he’d treated me and at all the lies he’d told her,” Pearce says. The next day, she confronted Bennett.
“I told him I’d spent the day with his girlfriend and the color drained from his face,” she says. "That night, he texted me to say he was sorry, but I ignored it.”
Pearce’s anger remained steady for several days, but her resolve against Bennett eventually weakened.
"I started to see how sorry he seemed,” she says. “So I gave him an ultimatum that we move in together as a family, or he could leave. I found it hard to trust him to start with, but I knew if we had a future I had to give him the benefit of the doubt.”
Sarah’s trust was tested months later when Bennett unexpectedly left their house for several hours. When he came back, Pearce grilled him about what he’d been up to. Instead of running around town with other women, though, he’d been planning his proposal to her. At the height of Pearce's anger, Bennett dropped down on one knee and popped the question.
“I ruined the moment,” she jokes, “but I was overjoyed.”
Bennett gets that many will be skeptical of his ability to stay faithful, but he has one message for them: “They’re wrong,” he says. "As long as you learn from your mistakes, that’s the important thing. Now I’m older, wiser and we’re happy. I wouldn’t risk what we have for anything. I nearly lost everything and I’m so glad I didn’t. If I could speak to me back then as I am now, I’d give myself a slap across the face. I was a fool and idiot. Now we have a lovely house, two beautiful kids and the world is perfect.”
Sources: Daily Mirror / Photo Credit: Pixabay