The Wheel and Axle

Sham Versus Infidelity

by on Jul.05, 2013, under Film & TV, Queer

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The FB page of “My Husband’s Lover” recently asked a simple yet ultimately (as the comments section showed) divisive question: Kanino kayo pumapanig: sa babaeng pinakasalan, o sa lalaking unang inibig?

My initial reaction, swooning over #tomden and typical of the “follow your heart trope,” was to say, “Eric!”

Then I realized: If we want to look at this in a healthy manner, then the answer is, “Neither.”

The common response of the pro-Lallies is, “May pamilya na sila. They should stay together for the kids.” Often, there’s also the added rhetoric of the sanctity of marriage, blahblahblah. They fail to remember that the marriage was built on a lie. The sanctity was never there to begin with. It is not a marriage; it is a sham. Just ask Carmina Villaroel.


(Image courtesy of MHL’s Facebook Page)

The common response of the pro-Erics is, “True love!” They broke up years ago. Please move on. It’s actually pathetic, when you think about it. Sure, there was no closure, but only the desperate would not have moved on a decade later. Moreover, he is rekindling the relationship under the shadow of infidelity. True love is not always right. Besides, “How you get him is how you lose him.”

Also, a response to my comment on the post bothered me. “Paano ‘pag tanda nya?” (I spelled that out because the textspeak used will make you want to hurl large objects.)

If the only reason for you to get married and have children is to have someone to take care of you in your sunset years, then you have a selfish notion of what marriage and family are about.

You marry someone because you love them, not because you need a caregiver.

You have children because you want to share the world with offspring that you love. If they come back when you are old to take care of you, then great. If they want to be independent of you, then they have that choice, and it’s not bad, and you have no right to make them feel bad about it. Only selfish parents will expect their kids to be their crutch in old age.

This is why I respect my parents dearly. They have often told me and my brother that they want us to live our lives independently of them because they will not be around forever. If we take care of them in old age, they will welcome it; however, they do not expect it. It is easier to love and care for such parents as opposed to those who squeeze every last drop out of their kids – even if those kids already have their own families.

Love is giving and expecting nothing in return. If you think your children owe you every last minute to your dying day, then you should never have children.

Also, parents “staying together for the kids” will not always work especially if the marriage is broken irreparably. An environment of conflict or distrust can do more harm to the kids. Of course parents should always try to work things out, but if it is an intrinsic issue like the sham of Vincent and Lally’s “marriage,” then that marriage was never a marriage to begin with – just a piece of meaningless paper. Sometimes, parents who are separate but who nonetheless jointly provide love and support to their kids are the better option.

The healthy choice for Vincent is to get an annulment, especially since this is a valid annulment situation – not just legally in the Philippines but also ethically and morally. Then he should start anew with neither Lally, whom he lied to from the very start, nor Eric, with whom infidelity would have been the foundation of a renewed relationship.

This doesn’t mean Vincent should remain single forever, as the same brain-deficient simpleton commenter I noted above extrapolated from my initial statement (hence her question, “Paano ‘pag tanda nya?”). He can live a new life, seek out new lovers – whether men or women or both, whatever he is most comfortable with – and maybe along the way find a companion with whom he can start a clean slate based on honest love… and perhaps even grow old with.

Let’s face the facts. What Vincent has with both Lally and Eric are broken.

So start fresh. Be single for a while. Find someone new… and begin a new life based on love and not selfish reasons.

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15 Comments for this entry

  • winston

    am for eric and vincent. kasi may puso sila at sila talaga forever.

  • jdc-up

    I agree with you. I had a similar exchange with a high school classmate when he run into each recently, she exclaimed with much conviction that, verbatim, “Hindi ba yun naman ang dahilan para magka-anak? Para may mag-alaga sa iyo pagtanda mo.” And I really wanted to make her feel how selfish and dumb what she said was but just said, “Ang unfair naman nun sa bata na kaya mo lang siya binuhay para may caregiver ka lang.”

    I honestly believe that “My Husband’s Lover” is a breath of fresh air and a cold shower to those who think of love as black and white. Love is a spectrum of colors. It comes in its myriad forms.

  • Jeffrey Serrano

    Hello Allan,

    I agree, I just want to add something based on my experience, when me and my boyfriend separated we are broken and I know how it feels, it really hurts.

    I became single for a while and go out with friends and decided not to commit until my heart gets fully recovered.

    The reason for this is that I want to be fair with my future lover, I always give my 100% love (Not halfheartedly) and not use other people to move on or to recover.

    It’s been almost a year enjoying my single life, then all of a sudden, I felt something and I know that during those times I am ready to love again, so I decided to find someone to love…

    And do you know who I found? My X boyfriend, since I accepted all the pains and accepted the fact that we can’t be together, we are probably destined so our path crossed again that we never expected.

    We just had a good conversation and I don’t feel any pain since I accepted the fact that we can’t be together, but then, we started to share our good memories only but never to mention those bad experiences that helps us learn.

    We are running for 7 years and I just can’t believe that our love keeps on getting stronger not just sweeter but the best if it’s the second time around.

    Please see:

    • Steve E.

      I am happy for you Jeffrey. I made a mistake in following the dictate of society and so called religious belief. I hope you continue loving each other eternally. Like in a normal husband and wife, fidelity is very important.

      In my case, I never been involved in any same sex relationship with anyone. But this guy, who had been my best friend for 5 years, was the love of my life… the only person I ever loved, though I had been married twice already.

      We confined our friendship in just hugging and kissing because we were afraid of going all the way due to our conservative family background and upbringing. We opted to chose the so called ‘normal’ life, and as a consequence we both suffered for the rest of our lives.

      It’s your life to live. Congratulations.

  • Jeffrey Serrano

    There is still a so called “Destiny”. For MHL, it would still depend on them if they are meant for each other… 🙂

  • allancarreon

    @joy ramos: Thanks!

    @winston: 🙂 like I said above, my initial reaction (i.e. the romantic in me) is also to root for Eric and Vincent. Besides, IF I did have to choose between Eric and Lally – without the option of Vincent giving up both – I probably would choose Eric. Then again, that’s a bias in me.

    @jdc-up: I would’ve smacked your classmate in the head and slapped her silly if she said that to me. You are infinitely a better person than I am. 🙂 Seriously, though, I agree with you. I also agree that love is a spectrum and never black and white. One will never know how it goes.

    @Jeffrey Serrano: thank you for your heartfelt sharing. I agree that it can always still work out with people you’ve left behind and moved on from… after all, people are different and how life is lived varies widely. I think what probably made it different is that you and your ex started fresh on better footing with no strings attached to the past.

    I will say this, though: I don’t really believe in destiny. Destiny is what we make of our lives, the choices we make, and how hard we do to keep our relationships strong. But that’s just me. 🙂

  • allancarreon

    Also, @Jeffrey Serrano: are you from Ambergris (or Telus)? Our mutual friends are all from my time working in Ambergris a decade ago. It was still Ambergris then, and I already left when it became Telus. I was the manager for Quality when I left.

  • Steve E.

    I was exactly in similar situation. I let him go and pushed him away. I see myself as Eric but a closeted gay. We are now both married with grown up children and have not seen each other for past 30 years though we live in same city. We had been married twice, I supposed for the wrong reasons. Though still together, I heard that he had difficulty holding on to his marriage. While I continue to live a (normal?)life seen by many as a perfect husband & father. Now in my twilight years, I can never divulge who I really am. All my friends and relatives are very envious of my achievements & ideal family life, BUT BEHIND A VERY SAD MAN SUFFERING FOR THE REST OF HIS LIFE. NOT A DAY THAT I DON’T REMEMBER AND THINK OF THE ONLY PERSON I EVER LOVED. For Vincent’s sake, I hope he follows his heart, because it really hurts. At the end of the day, it is our life to live just once and no one will ever remember your sacrifices demanded by society or religious belief nor the sufferings we have to endure.

  • ram

    SIGH, I feel for Lally but unang nakilala ni Vincent at Eric ang isa’t isa, Sana yong tangang si Vincent nag antay na lang sa pagbabalik ni Eric. I really want the original lovers Eric and Vincent to end up together. Eric should be like , “Una kang naguing akin Vincent ” . I’m sure the kids and the in laws will understand. LOL.

  • Steve E.

    So start fresh. Be single for a while. Find someone new… and begin a new life based on love and not selfish reasons.

    Sounds easy, but it is not. Vince and Eric love each other dearly and there’s no two ways about it. Eric will always be in Vince heart, and it’s unfair to his new partner, just like what happened to Lally. He could find another man, but he will always find the Eric in this new person.

    It is extremely difficult to move on, especially if there’s no closure in your separation. For more than 30 years, I married and remarried, yet not a day in my life that I don’t remember my only true. I pretended to be happy but who am I kidding?

  • allancarreon

    @ram: to be realistic, you will find very few in-laws who will understand this situation. If it’s hard for parents to accept it, what more for non-blood relatives, particularly a woman’s parents who will likely only see that their daughter was deceived and used? There are of course exceptions, but in the current landscape of the Philippines, those are few and far between.

    @Steve E: thank you for sharing. Far be it for me to judge, but you are it seems remarrying for the wrong reasons. Why perpetuate the lie to your wife/wives? Just stay single.

    Love may be important, but people need to move on… especially after thirty years. It’s not healthy. That’s no longer love; that’s obsession. If it were true love, then you would have gone back for him. Love can’t be about cowardice. You may also be in love with the memory of him, but he may no longer be the person you knew thirty years ago. People change. Thirty years is a long time.

  • Steve E.

    Everything you said were right. Unfortunately, I am no longer young to reconsider the options. Though I still love him, I accepted my fate as part of life’s journey.

    My purpose in writing these messages is to reach the Vincents in today’s Philippine society not to imitate my decisions.

    I left Philippines 36 years ago, hoping to start a new life in a more opened society, in spite of the fact that I was already a successful professional with Master’s degree and Managerial position. Though physically away, my emotional tie with relatives & friends back home dominated my decisions. Also, as a breadwinner of big family from age 16 and a role model of my clan, I couldn’t risk losing the respect of those people.

    My Caucasian friend was also very worried of possible backlash from his family and friends. Besides, the arrangement was still unacceptable in this country in late 70s and early 80s.

    I am very eager to see the end of this tv series. Hoping that the producer or writer will give justice to the feelings of the characters, after showing how difficult to live as closeted gay. I wish for a happy ending for all those involved. I still hope that Vincent and Eric will be together for good because they truly love each other. Though I am a closeted gay, I see myself more as Eric in most things. I never been involved with anyone, except him. Both of us, married twice and had two grown up kids (a boy and a girl).

  • Jeffrey Serrano

    @Allan: Yes, I work there. It’s really nice to hear that you work for amber before as a Quality Manager, small world!

    Also, I respect your opinion that you don’t believe in destiny and then agree to some extent that destiny is what we make of our lives and/or the choices we make.

    I love him ever since but my decisions then may have undesirable outcome as I have waited for a sign as basis if we really are meant for each other (which is crazy or a childish acts believing in fairy tails haha) but yes, It’s still a matter of choice.

    @Steve: Yes, I will continue loving him endlessly. We just had our date last Saturday. I bought a bouquet of roses and asked him to go to the seaside walk in Mall Of Asia, a lot of people were staring at me as I was carrying a bouquet of roses, we were talking with each other through phone and I want him angry (For some reason, crazy right?) because he was searching for me, without knowing that I was already behind him, and when he turned, I gave him the flowers with a big smile saying “I love you” in front of many people.

    He was speechless after receiving the flowers and been smiling the whole night, thereafter is that we ate at Harbor View Resto and prepared a simple dinner, everything was set, “and you know what?” that night became my most happiest moment in my life as I’ve never seen him that happy before, those big smiles made my life worthwhile.

    I will post our pictures in my facebook soon.

  • allancarreon

    @Jeffrey: I was one of the pioneers of Ambergris, actually, particularly QA. I was one of those who helped build the department from scratch and was the first internally-promoted manager. Small world, indeed.

    Meanwhile, that’s a nice romantic story. I should do that again in the future… haven’t done something that sweet for some time now. 🙂

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