This blog is not for the judgmental, the fearful-that-it-might-happen-to-me or those suffering from projective identification. You and welcome to read it, however, you are not welcome to judge me or level abuse. That's the disclaimer...

And the dharma makes six - in no particular order

I met Claud on a dating site ten years ago and discovered that he was married and had a long term lover. He wanted to add me into the mix and I declined. We kept in touch and when I met up with him recently he was still married with the same long term lover. Kudos Claud. I did wonder if his wife knew and was keeping mum or was simply incredibly naive. How do you keep a 14 year old affair a secret from your spouse?

I confessed to Claud that I had recently recently realised that my last 5 lovers over the last four years were all married. Not exactly a life of dharma! To protect their identities, I told him about Matthew, Mark, Luke I and II, and John.

Matthew lasted on and off for about two years. At the time I was rather surprised, but by now I see a pattern. He was in sales. I have mentioned him in a blog postbefore. I watched him lie to his wife that he was going into a meeting when we were going into the bedroom. I help men cheat! That's what I do...

He told me that he had only ever slept with his wife. I was surprised. I didn't know that still happened out of religious circles.

On an off patch I started seeing Mark, an old colleague with whom I had started a relationship with as the dynamic bipolar me in 2000. I called things off at the time without much of an explanation. I think it was because he was so needy and I think I happened to be shagging another married man at the time - old habits die hard. When I bumped into him several times in the local mall over ten years later, the vibe was amped and exciting. We had coffee. I let him read my anonymous online dating blog and he was quite turned on. He suggested we have a liaison and I responded in parental mode that he had two children to protect. Clearly a man scorned is just as bad as a woman scorned, as when I suggested a liaison about 3 years later, he was game. He told me that he had considered coming to me as a therapist and trying to get me in bed. Clearly I was not one thing he had laid to rest.

He was emotionally literate and a keen lover, just a surprisingly bad one having made it to his fifties. When I told him he was hurt and asked why I would say something like that to someone I like and respect. Assumptions remain the mother of all fuckups as yes, I like him, but why would I respect someone who was cheating on his wife? That said he was keen to learn and I kept him as an unreliable lover and we kept in regular contact. His wife also had her mental health issues and was  somewhat withdrawn at times, so he got lonely and wanted to connect and connect we did. He also traveled a lot which allowed us to have fun sexting.

You don't exactly have to be faithful to your married lover when you don't know if and when you are next going to see them, so things started up with Matthew again. When that ended I might have been more demanding with Mark and he gave me permission to take another lover. He didn't want me to get attached. He wanted to feel free. In fact he would prefer me to take another lover. 

There are slim pickings of sex when your lover is married. They need to get a gap. And be economical with the truth. Plans can change when the wife accidentally makes an admin blunder and you don't get the shag that was so carefully and calculatedly diarised. 

Enter Claud... I'll come back to that.

Luke I was a colleague of an ex boyfriend. We hooked up on Facebook. I did the boudoir shoot for him for Valentine's Day. As it turned out to be my first one night stand, he gets lumped in the category of Luke. He didn't fall into the category of happily married - unlike all the others - but he didn't want a divorce because he was wealthy and didn't want to lose half his wealth. What men will do when they are in love! Like get married in community of property.

Luke II was also surprisingly a one night stand. With the connection we had made over WhatsApp I was prepared to let him drive to Cape Town, make him dinner, have sex with him, and see him off the next morning. I was completely smitten, but when I asked him later what happened, he said he thought he was one of many and he went back to his family and the sporty lifestyle that he lived.   Ouch! It's not everyone that I let share my bed for an evening. 

The benefits of married men are that their visits are short lived. They seldom spend the night. You get your own space. I need a lot of space - with the medication I am on I can't concentrate for hours on end.

John was a good friend from varsity days who was in an inconvenient marriage. His wife was having an affair and gave him permission to find himself a lover. They stayed together for the young children and some other tricky details. They lived in a conservative community so he needed to look out of town and he told me about her. We liaised for about 5 years and he played husband to me by paying some of my bills when I was struggling. As he only travelled from Jo'burg to Cape Town infrequently, it was more of an emotional connection, with wifely permission. But we did rough and tumble in a sweet way and I did seek him out when I needed to connect. I refer to him as my out-of-town-husband. And he got to share my bed for the night.

So, re-enter from off stage Claud. We had a picnic in my bedroom with bubbly, cheese and chips, which ended in the ceremonial unwrapping of a condom. He will hopefully be a more reliable and regular addition.